Wednesday, October 01, 2008

How Tehran propagandist got round Cyrus's Zionism

I could not resist flagging this propaganda piece timed for the Jewish New Year by Press TV, a Tehran-based outfit employing a journalist with the unlikely name of Dex Eastman.

It extolls the exemplary treatment of the Jews by the Iranians over the centuries. The Jews experienced no antisemitism, he claims.

"Over the centuries, Iran not only developed a reputation for its respect toward religious minorities, but became known as a country where anti-Semitism has had next to no place.

A Jewish gathering celebrating the second anniversary of the Constitutional Revolution in Tehran. Since the early 20th century, the Iranian Jewish community has enjoyed a seat in Parliament.
Jews lived in peace and harmony in Iran during World War II. While the establishment of the Israeli regime in the aftermath of World War II did provoke anti-Zionist sentiments in the country, the country's Jewish population was not threatened. *

In the 1970s, the number of impoverished Iranian Jews amounted to a mere 10 percent; 80 percent were middle class and 10 percent wealthy.*


Although Jews accounted for only a small percentage of the Iranian population, in 1979 two of the 18 members of the Iranian Academy of Sciences, 80 of the 4,000 university lecturers, and 600 of the 10,000 physicians in the country were Jewish.

What better example of tolerance than the ancient king of Persia Cyrus, who invented the concept of human rights.

But Cyrus presents Eastman with a problem. The Jews of Persia always remember Cyrus with gratitude as the ruler who allowed them to return to their homeland in the land of Israel from exile in Babylon. But to admit Cyrus's Zionism would contradict the Iranian regime' policy towards the Jews, who are entitled to religious but not political rights.

This is how Eastman solves his dilemma:

Cyrus ordered his compatriots to help the Jews and introduced the principle of freedom of movement, allowing them to return to the then Persian territories that now constitute Palestine. His treatment was such that many Jews set up home in the Persian Empire.

In other words, what is now Palestine was then just a random corner of the Persian empire to which Jews had no particular attachment.

Read article in full

*All credit should go to the Shah, Reza Pahlavi, under whose reign the Jews 'never had it so good.'

1 comment:

heather said...

fyi:

http://www.azzaman.com/english/index.asp?fname=news\2008-09-28\kurd.htm

via gateway pundit.