January 27th was Holocaust Memorial Day, where the world remembered the six million Jews and five million others killed. The day signifies the end of the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp in Poland, which alone is estimated to have claimed the lives of over one million.
The leader of one country decided to act in defiance of the memorial day, and would you believe that we made a nuclear weapons deal with him, and then paid his country $1.7 billion in a legal settlement?
Obviously this leader is Iranian supreme leader Ali Khamenei.
Via the Times of Israel:
As the global community marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day Wednesday, Iran’s supreme leader uploaded a video to his official website questioning the magnitude of the Nazi regime’s mass murder campaign against the Jewish people during World War II.
In a video titled “Are the Dark Ages Over,” a series of photos showing killed or injured Palestinian children is displayed on screen, while a Farsi-speaking man, presumably Ayatollah Ali Khamenei himself, can be heard condemning the nations of the world for offering support to Israel.
“It is Western powers headed by America that are [supporting Israel],” the narrator says. “This is while they say in their slogans that they are opposed to terrorism and [the Islamic State terrorist group].”
The speaker goes on to accuse European nations of silencing any view that does not conform to the historically accepted account of the genocide against the Jews by Nazi Germany.
The video was uploaded as Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani visited Europe, with trips to Italy, where he met with the pope on Tuesday, and France. Before leaving Rome for Paris on Wednesday, Rouhani charged that the “Zionist lobby” in the US was preventing warmer Iran-US ties.
Khamenei has expressed doubts about the historicity of the Holocaust in the past.
“The Holocaust is an event whose reality is uncertain and if it has happened, it’s uncertain how it has happened,” Khamenei said during an address in 2014, according to a Twitter account under his name thought to be run by his office.
“Expressing opinion about the Holocaust, or casting doubt on it, is one of the greatest sins in the West. They prevent this, arrest the doubters, try them while claiming to be a free country,” said Khamenei, who has repeatedly called the Holocaust a “myth.”
Officials in Iran have been reluctant to admit the slaughter of 6 million Jews in Europe at the hands of the Nazis during World War II.
Earlier this month Israeli officials called on the UN to condemn Iran for the Tehran municipality’s annual Holocaust denial cartoon contest, set to take place in June of this year.
As Khamenei promises his constituents that Israel won’t exist in another 25 years, I can’t help but wonder why those who deny the Holocaust are always the same kind of people who wish there was one.
[Note: This post was authored by The Analytical Economist]