Quantcast

Jewish Journal

Israel converts Ahmadinejad

by Brad A. Greenberg

September 18, 2008 | 3:33 pm

Not exactly. But considering his history of diatribes against Israel and the Jewish people, you’ve got to wonder: Who got to Mahmoud?

TEHRAN — The Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, took the unusual step on Thursday of publicly defending a high official accused by legislators and senior clerics of saying that Iran was a friend of the Israeli people.

Nonetheless, Mr. Ahmadinejad repeated his opposition to Israel, saying that while “some say the idea of a Greater Israel has expired, I say the idea of a lesser Israel has expired, too.” He also called the Holocaust a “fake” and accused Israel of perpetrating a holocaust on the Palestinian people, The Associated Press said.

In mid July, the vice president for tourism, Esfandiar Rahim Mashai, was quoted as saying Iran was “a friend of the Israeli people.” He repeated the comment in August saying there was “no hostility toward the Israeli people.”

The rejection of Israel is a founding principle of Iran’s Islamic revolution so that any suggestion of recognition of Israel is heretical, and Mr. Mashai’s remarks drew protests from some 200 legislators and from some senior clerics. But, despite their calls for his ouster, Mr. Mashai was not dismissed or disciplined.

On Thursday, Mr. Ahmadinejad, whose son is married to a daughter of Mr. Mashai, came to his defense, saying that Mr. Mashai “has served the people and the government for 30 years.”

“He has never used the term ‘Israeli people’ and never will.” he said.

Instead, Mr. Ahmadinejad insisted that “what Mr. Mashai said is the message of the government,” representing that as Iran wanting to help people who had been “tricked” by the authorities into living in Israel.

“Our nation has no problem with other nations, but as far the Zionist regime is concerned, we do not believe in an Israeli government or an Israeli nation,” he said.

Oh. Nevermind.

Tracker Pixel for Entry

COMMENTS

We welcome your feedback.

Privacy Policy
Your information will not be shared or sold without your consent. Get all the details.

Terms of Service
JewishJournal.com has rules for its commenting community.Get all the details.

Publication
JewishJournal.com reserves the right to use your comment in our weekly print publication.

ADVERTISEMENT
PUT YOUR AD HERE

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

{blog_image:alt}

Since launching the blog in 2007, I’ve referred to myself as “a God-fearing Christian with devilishly good Jewish looks.” The description, I’d say, is an accurate one,...

Read more