Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Iranian Jews caught up in war of words

Before the Iranian Revolution, every seat in the synagogue was full for morning prayer, but in those turbulent years, half of Iran's Jews fled the country. Those who stayed behind hope they are not heading for a new crisis, Elizabeth Palmer of CBS News reports. (With thanks: Albert)

But the signs are ominous. Iran's hardline president has denied Hitler's holocaust and said Israel should be wiped off the map. Also, Israel refuses to rule out a strike on Iran's nuclear installations.

But in the shops and bazaars, Jewish merchants don't like to talk about the war of words.

"For the last 26 years we have very, very peaceful life with Muslims," one merchant says.

Instead, they stress that during the Iranian Revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini promised to protect them. But how do they feel when President Ahmadinejad says that Israel has no right to exist? "We know that all these things is politics, and they are not real," one Iranian Jew explains.

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