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Creating Kristallnacht: Hate Baiting at the National Post PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Friday, 19 May 2006 12:00

Creating Kristallnacht: Hate Baiting at the National Post

PEJ News
- C. L. Cook - Canada's National Post broke a sensational story; a story so big, the flagship of the CanWest Global media monolith denied it's nationwide dailies, keeping the scoop to themselves. Today, the Post reported Iran has signed into law a provision requiring Iranian Jews and Christians wear identifying badges declaring their religious affiliation. Below the 18 point high headline, a picture of a man and woman, circa Hitler's Germany, each sporting the infamous Yellow Star of David stitched to their overcoats. It's a stunning development, one that should shock the world, and finally convince all of Iran's despotism. But of course, the National Post story is a complete fabrication; a fact Canwest itself is now "reporting."


Creating Kristallnacht:
Hate Baiting at the National Post

C. L. Cook

PEJ News
May 19, 2006

It sometimes seems we live in a time of unprecedented corruption, perfidy, and abomination; but, as Shakespeare said: "There's nothing new under the sun."

"Hitler" is a name often invoked in the media these days. The terrors of the Nazi regime, especially referencing its grotesque concentration camps, where State enemies were dispatched after suffering religious humiliation, torture, and God knows what else. The world has witnessed ruthless invasions and occupations, inflicted by a tryannical, rogue nation on its smaller neighbours before; in the form of Hitler's Germany, the world watched, horror-struck, a racist, ideologically perverse campaign of global domination, whose goal was no less than the enslavement of the entire planet. 

Yes Bill, verily there is nothing new under the sun.

The story of Jewish suffering under the Nazis, both during the rise of fascism in Germany, through its progression to its inevitable ends behind the barbed wire of the concentration camps, reminds of the gruesome potential of collective barbarity. Even today, more than 70 years from the shocking and awful ascension of Hitler and his henchmen, the remembrance of the legislated "branding" of German Jews, all made to sew the Star of David on their clothing, is a particularly poignant symbol of totalitarianism, the apposite of human decency, early warning of terrible portent.

It also serves a reminder of how quickly a society can be led into madness, an induced insanity that would allow the blasphemies forever recorded in the annals of history. It's a story that demands reverent acknowledgement, respect, and a regular revisiting. As indeed it is remembered in solemn ceremonies, news media, and motion pictures. It is a lesson hard learnt by millions of our predecessors, and not to be treated cynically for political advancement, or commercial interest.

Though that's a message apparently lost on the editors of "Canwest Goebbels," as CanWest is affectionately referred in some circles.

The logical extension of the avowedly pro-Israel media monster's pro-war propaganda-driven "information" dissemination philosophy, (as iterated by its late #1, Israel "Izzy" Asper, on his assumption of much of the former Canadian media magnate, disgraced Lord Black's, crumbling empire) today's Holocaust hijacking presented on the Post's front page nation-wide, and quietly being disavowed even now in its on-line edition, is the flowering of the Hate War waged by Canwest in the service of a greater and possibly perpetual state of war in the world. Canwest proved today worse, with this abortion of truth issued, than their most jaded critics would believe.

I can't believe it!

I can't believe it took this long for the Likudite Canwest Global to descend to the eye-poking, nostril-gouging level it has in it's smear assault against "evil" Iran; as sinisterly personified singularly in the person of its president, another Hitler in the making, who given half a chance would create a nuclear-tipped missile to set fire to the world; beginning in Israel.

And he hates Jews, we're daily told; would have them all wear badges, immolate the nation, etc...  

Yet, the story is bullshit. 

Phoney as Saddam's WMD, the National Post published a pack of lies; lies told at a time when the rally cry to an unprovoked war of conquest and occupation in a far off land is the goal of a furious lobbying campaign in America, and around the world. Fake as the babies thrown from Kuwaiti incubators, abandoned to die on the cold, cold hospital floor, etc... used to "justify" the first Gulf War. The Post's 'Iran Eyes Badges for Jews, Christians?' is an incitement to disgust, fear, and the loathing of Iran, and its people, the ones likely to suffer should another front in the War on Terror be allowed opened.

Hate Crime

Unlike America, Canada has laws against crimes of incitement to hatred of identifiable groups, based on ethnic, gender, or sexual orientation parameters. What are Persian-Canadians, and the greater Muslim population of Canada, to make of the Post's story? What effects might they suffer at the long-knuckled hands of the National Post's misinformed readership? Will hasty on-line retractions of page one libel suffice to defer legal proceedings, or government censure?

Canada's newly arrived prime minister, Harper responded to questions from the Canwest reporter tasked to refute the front page fiasco, saying simply:

"Unfortunately we?ve seen enough already from the Iranian regime to suggest that it is very capable of this kind of action. It boggles the mind that any regime on the face of the earth would want to do anything that would remind people of Nazi Germany."

Yes Stephen, it boggles the mind to be sure.

I'll remember to check the recycling for a front page copy tomorrow
to hang beside the yellowed CanWest call to arms against Iraq already pinned on my wall. 

Chris Cook
is a contributing editor to PEJ News, and hosts Gorilla Radio, broad/webcast from the University of Victoria, Canada. You can check out the GR Blog here.

Comments are welcome at: info(at)pej.ca

[I generally highlight links to sources, but as Canwest is apparently in "purge splurge" mode, these below are the raw materials I found as of time of writing. And, Victorians may be interested to read their "Liberal" MP for Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca's bold question to the government on this issue, as I found it recorded at Babble.ca - lex]

from Babble.ca - posted by SGM - I nominate Liberal MP Keith Martin to win the Award for Hysterical Overreaction to a Non-story, based on the questions he asked of Peter MacKay in the House of Commons yesterday:

Hon. Keith Martin (Esquimalt?Juan de Fuca, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the comments from the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, but he must also recognize that this is Hitler's shadow stalking the earth, that this is the same regime in Iran that has denied the Holocaust and has state sponsored persecution of members of the Baha'i faith. Quite frankly, words are not enough.
I ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs if, at the very least, he has called in the Iranian ambassador to Canada to express Canada's disgust over these actions in Iran.

Hon. Keith Martin (Esquimalt?Juan de Fuca, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Canada's response must be focused, clear, strong and unequivocal. I ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs, will he bring the matter up at the United Nations Security Council? If this comes to pass, will he then call for an international ban on the purchase of Iranian oil?

A matter for the Security Council?

Glad you've got things in perspective, Mr. Martin.

CanWest Goebbels Plays the Holocaust Card
by ape ? Friday May 19, 2006 at 07:13 PM

Dismembering the Holocaust

photo http://www.canada.com/scripts/frontpage.aspx?name=National+Post&thumb=false


Experts say report of badges for Jews in Iran is untrue

A yellow badge [as]worn by Jews in Nazi
Germany  during the 1940s.

Chris Wattie, National Post
Published: Friday, May 19, 2006

Several experts are casting doubt on reports that Iran had passed a law requiring the country?s Jews and other religious minorities to wear coloured badges identifying them as non-Muslims.
The Iranian embassy in Otttawa also denied the Iranian government had passed such a law.

A news story and column by Iranian-born analyst Amir Taheri in yesterday?s National Post reported that the Iranian parliament had passed a sweeping new law this week outlining proper dress for Iran?s majority Muslims, including an order for Jews, Christians and Zoroastrians to wear special strips of cloth.

According to the reports, Jews were to wear yellow cloth strips, called zonnar, while Christians were to wear red and Zoroastrians blue.

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre and Iranian expatriates living in Canada had confirmed that the order had been passed, although it still had to be approved by Iran?s ?Supreme Guide? Ali Khamenehi before being put into effect.

Hormoz Ghahremani, a spokesman for the Iranian Embassy in Ottawa, said in an e-mail to the Post yesterday that, ?We wish to categorically reject the news item.

?These kinds of slanderous accusations are part of a smear campaign against Iran by vested interests, which needs to be denounced at every step.?

Sam Kermanian, of the U.S.-based Iranian-American Jewish Federation, said in an interview from Los Angeles that he had contacted members of the Jewish community in Iran ? including the lone Jewish member of the Iranian parliament ? and they denied any such measure was in place.

Mr. Kermanian said the subject of ?what to do with religious minorities? came up during debates leading up to the passing of the dress code law.

?It is possible that some ideas might have been thrown around,? he said. ?But to the best of my knowledge the final version of the law does not demand any identifying marks by the religious minority groups.?

Ali Reza Nourizadeh, an Iranian commentator on political affairs in London, suggested that the requirements for badges or insignia for religious minorities was part of a ?secondary motion? introduced in parliament, addressing the changes specific to the attire of people of various religious backgrounds.

Mr. Nourizadeh said that motion was very minor and was far from being passed into law.

That account could not be confirmed.

Meir Javdanfar, an Israeli expert on Iran and the Middle East who was born and raised in Tehran, said yesterday that he was unable to find any evidence that such a law had been passed.

?None of my sources in Iran have heard of this,? he said. ?I don?t know where this comes from.?

Mr. Javdanfar said that not all clauses of the law had been passed through the parliament and said the requirement that Jews, Christians and Zoroastrians wear special insignia might be part of an older version of the Islamic dress law, which was first written two years ago.

?In any case, there is no way that they could have forced Iranian Jews to wear this,? he added. ?The Iranian people would never stand for it.?

However, Mr. Kermanian added that Jews in Iran still face widespread, systematic discrimination. ?For example if they sell food they have to identify themselves and their shops as non-Muslim,? he said.

Rabbi Marvin Hier, the dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre in Los Angeles, acknowledged that he did not have independent confirmation of the requirement for Jews to wear badges, but said he still believes it was passed.

?We know that the national uniform law was passed and that certain colours were selected for Jews and other minorities,? he said. ?[But] if the Iranian government is going to pass such a law then they are not likely to be forthcoming about what they are doing.?

Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister, said yesterday that Iran is ?very capable? of enacting such a law but could not confirm reports that members of religious minorities must wear identifiable markers on their clothing.

?Unfortunately we?ve seen enough already from the Iranian regime to suggest that it is very capable of this kind of action,? Mr. Harper said. ?It boggles the mind that any regime on the face of the earth would want to do anything that would remind people of Nazi Germany.?

National Post, with files from Allan Woods, CanWest News Service

? National Post 20Iran Eyes Badges for Jews, Christians?

Last Updated on Friday, 19 May 2006 12:00

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