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October 1, 2014

Iran New Horizon Conference Draws U.S. Anti-Semites, Holocaust Deniers

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Medea Benjamin participating in the 2nd New Horizon Conference in Tehran

Update — 10/02/14: Read more about the 2nd New Horizon Conference and its U.S. and international participants.

Iran kicked off its anti-America and anti-Israel New Horizon Conference as the final part of the 13th International Resistance Film Festival in Tehran. The three-day conference opened on September 29 and marks the second time Tehran has hosted the event. According to organizers, the event will include “tens of elite thinkers, philosophers, activists and politicians worldwide” who will discuss and “expose” Zionist control of the film industry and the influence of the “Zionist lobby in America.”

As in the previous conference, this year’s New Horizon Conference has drawn the participation of several anti-Israel activists, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists and Holocaust deniers. A new presence at the conference is the participation of a so called American anti-war activist, Medea Benjamin, a co-founder of CODEPINK.

In addition to Benjamin, the conference’s official website published the names of several American and international anti-Semites, anti-Israel activists and Holocaust deniers that are expected to be in attendance, including Maria Poumier, a French conspiracy theorist and Holocaust denier; Claudio Moffa, an Italian Holocaust denier; Kevin Barrett, an anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist and frequent contributor to Iran’s English language propaganda news network, Press TV; Garth Porter, an anti-Israel journalist; Pepe Escobar, a Brazilian anti-Israel journalist; and Art Olivier, a former elected official from California and 9/11 conspiracy theorist.

Moreover, Iranian news agencies have reported that a number of other individuals are scheduled to also attend the three-day conference in Tehran. Iranian news agencies have reported the expected participation of Alison Weir, the  director of If Americans Knew and the Council for the National Interest, two grassroots anti-Israel organizations; Ken O’Keefe, an anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist former U.S. Marine and a regular contributor to Press TV; Wayne Madsen, an anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist; Cyrus McGoldrick, the former Civil Rights Manager for the New York chapter of Council on American-Islamic Relations; Dieudonne M’bala M’bala, the French anti-Semitic comedian and the creator of the anti-Semitic “quenelle” gesture; and Mark Siljander, a former U.S. Representative (R-MI) who was found guilty in 2010 of two federal charges relating to his ties to an Islamic charity alleged to have funded terrorist groups.

The conference was opened with remarks by the personal advisor to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Mohsen Ghomi, who boasted that the conference itself is “the biggest threat to Zionists,” and that “American officials are puppets of the Zionist lobby who are taking advantage of American ignorance.” Anti-Israel journalist Garth Porter said during his presentation on Monday that the Mossad and CIA are responsible for manufacturing the nuclear crisis with Iran.

The 2nd New Horizon Conference comes on the heels of the 13th annual International Resistance Film Festival that ran in Tehran from September 22-29. The film festival included submissions from dozens of countries, including Iran, North Korea, Lebanon, Syria and Turkey, and was organized by the Cinematic Community of the Islamic Revolution and Sacred Defense and the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization.

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May 23, 2014

CIS Promotes Widely Disputed Report on Far-Right Radio Show

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Jessica Vaughan

On May 20, Jessica Vaughan of the anti-immigrant think tank Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) appeared as a guest on “Trunews,” a radio show hosted by far-right conspiracy theorist Rick Wiles. Vaughan was on the show to discuss a widely disputed new CIS report blaming the Obama administration for the release of over 36,000 “criminal aliens” by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in 2013.

The report, authored by Vaughan, provides a skewed analysis of the numbers compiled by ICE.  Her apparent intention in the report was not only to promote the narrative that immigrants are criminals but also to attack the Obama administration for its alleged failure to enforce immigration laws currently on the books, both common tactics of the anti-immigrant movement. In response to the CIS report, ICE spokespersons noted that immigrants who have committed crimes are only sent to ICE after they have served their sentences and that in some cases, the agency was required by law to release some of the immigrants.

After a few minutes of allowing Vaughan to explain the major takeaways from the report, Wiles offered a suggestion as to what to do with the undocumented population currently residing in the United States. Wiles stated, “Hey, um, you put them on a C130 cargo plane and strap a parachute to them and you fly over the home country and you push them out the door!” Vaughan responded with a laugh and stated, “Some people have suggested that!”

Vaughan’s appearance on “Trunews” is another recent example of the anti-immigrant movement using far-right and extreme media to promote their cause. In April of this year, Vaughan granted an interview to reporter from the anti-Semitic newspaper American Free Press (AFP), founded by Holocaust denier Willis Carto. In March of 2014, Chris Chmielenski of the anti-immigrant group NumbersUSA, provided an interview to AFP.

In 2014, Frosty Wooldridge, an advisory board member with the extreme anti-immigrant group Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) appeared on more than one occasion on “The Jeff Rense Pro­gram.”  The program is a conspiracy-oriented Inter­net radio show broadcast on Rense’s noto­ri­ously anti-Semitic web­site. In Decem­ber 2013, David North, a fel­low with CIS appeared on “The Real­ist Report,” an Inter­net radio show hosted by the vir­u­lent anti-Semite and Holo­caust denier, John Friend.

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December 24, 2013

Anti-Semite John Friend Interviews Center for Immigration Fellow on His Radio Show

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John Friend, host of “The Realist Report”

David North, a fellow with the anti-immigrant group Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) appeared on “The Realist Report,” a radio show hosted by the virulent anti-Semite and Holocaust denier, John Friend. The show focused on immigration.

After the interview with North, Friend also promoted his white supremacist views regarding immigration. He wrote in the comments section of his website that he wished he asked North the following question: “In your view, do traditionally White Western European countries have the right to maintain and protect their traditional racial, ethnic, and cultural heritage?” Also in the comments section, Friend promoted the anti-Semitic conspiracy theory that Jews are responsible for non-white immigration to the United States.

Though CIS claims to be a mainstream organization that is against illegal immigration, this is not the first example of CIS associating itself with anti-Semites. In November of 2012, CIS circulated an article to its members authored by Virginia Abernethy. Abernethy serves on the editorial board of the Occidental Quarterly, an anti-Semitic publication edited by anti-Semitic professor Kevin MacDonald. In May 2012, CIS legal policy analyst, Jon Feere, provided quotes for  article titled, “‘Big Ag’ Favors Illegal Immigration” in American Free Press (AFP), a conspiracy-oriented anti-Semitic newspaper run by long-time anti-Semite and Holocaust denier, Willis Carto.

It is not clear if North knew about Friend’s anti-Semitism but even a cursory look at Friend’s work would have revealed his extreme views. Friend has written numerous anti-Semitic articles for AFP and on his personal website. His homepage contains quotes from Adolf Hitler and Joseph Goebbels. In a May 2013 article on his website, Friend wrote, “The arrogance, deceit, and treachery of the organized Jewish community knows no bounds.  Adolf Hitler was quite correct when he described the Jews as having an ‘unqualified capacity for falsehood.’” In a March 2013, article, Friend called the Holocaust a “fake narrative.”

In March 2013, Friend also announced the creation of the American Nationalist Association (ANA), a group which “aims to develop and advance the interests of traditional White America.” ANA’s statement of principles also reveals Friend’s anti-Semitism. The statement urges peoples of European ancestry to “Expose and reject all forms of Communism, Cultural Marxism, International Zionism, Globalism, Multi-Culturalism, and all Un-American rackets, frauds and organizations, including Usury and International Finance Capitalism.”

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