Iran plans Holocaust conference

TEHRAN, Iran (CNN) — Iran, whose president has labeled the attempt by Nazi Germany to exterminate Jews during World War II a “myth” and called for the destruction of Israel, announced Sunday it will hold a conference on the Holocaust.

“There will be a conference that will research the topic of the Holocaust and all its dimensions in the future,” according to a statement on the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA).

The statement did not say when the meeting would take place or who would be involved but said it would be sponsored by Iran’s Foreign Ministry and the Organization of the Islamic Conference “and in consultation with other countries to pursue this issue.”

Last month, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in a speech, “They have invented a myth that Jews were massacred, and place this above God, religions and the prophets.”

He added, “The West has given more significance to the myth of the genocide of the Jews.”

He argued that the “myth” of the Holocaust served as Europe’s pretext for the existence of Israel.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, President Bush, and many European officials condemned the remarks. Israeli officials also said Iran was ignoring the biblical Jewish homeland and thousands of years of Jewish history.

Ahmadinejad’s remarks about the Holocaust and calls for the destruction of Israel play out in the showdown over his nation’s nuclear intentions.

U.S. and European officials have expressed concern that Iran is trying to build a nuclear weapon under the guise of restarting its nuclear reactors for peaceful energy purposes. Tehran insists it has the right to build nuclear fuel.

Britain, France and Germany — the so-called EU-3, which conducted failed negotiations with Iran — along with the United States want the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog, to turn the issue over to the U.N. Security Council.

“The current president of Iran has announced that the destruction of Israel is an important part of their agenda, and that’s unacceptable,” President Bush said Friday at the White House, at an appearance with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“And the development of a nuclear weapon, it seems like to me, would make him a step closer to achieving that objective.”

I did not realize that the Iranians had such disdain for the Holocaust. I can not believe that they believe this event is a “myth.” They used the word, myth, in the wrong context. If they totally do not believe it, then they should call it fiction or a tale since myths usually have some truth to its origin. I understand that Iranians have suffered much in their history. But to straight out deny someone else’s history, identity, and suffering is degrading and hurtful as well. I also understand that the Holocaust is an event that receives all the attention from other horrendous genocides.

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One response to “Iran plans Holocaust conference

  1. Darren

    The Holocaust is not only one of the greatest genocides of the 20th century (let’s not forget Stalin’s purges in Soviet Russia) but it has also shaped Middle East politics in ways that are evident in the violence today.

    The negative effects of Western colonialism on the region have never been shaken. When WW2 was over, Britain and the U.S. decided that to make up for the suffering that the Jews had endured, Israel would be created. The problem with that is that they displaced the Arabs who were living in Palestine, who had done nothing wrong.

    Where once there was a thriving society there was now an oppressed minority group. And those people are still alive today. That action still affects everything. Iraq should be three countries right now. When Britain left these regions the borders that were created reflected the understanding of a white man who looks at brown people as all the same. In reality, these groups should not be in a country together. Sunnis and Shiites are killing each other rampantly in Iraq right now and all we can think to do is frame it as an insurgent al-Qaeda who hate freedom. Argh.

    Now Iran is trying to have this conference denying history and preaching hatred against the Jews. I have to believe there can be a society in that region that allows these groups to coexist. Israel as a nation (not Jews as a people) commits war crimes daily that fosters hate in the region. Hatred for them and hatred for the U.S. support.

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