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June 25, 2014 0

PCUSA Affiliated Group Demonizes Israel With Anti-Jewish Themes

Lurk­ing not too far in the back­ground of last week’s dis­ap­point­ing vote by the Gen­eral Assem­bly of the Pres­by­ter­ian Church USA (PCUSA) to divest from US com­pa­nies doing busi­ness with Israel in the West Bank, is the ongo­ing cam­paign by ele­ments within PCUSA to dele­git­imize Israel by using bla­tantly anti-Jewish ideas and themes. A dri­ving force of this cam­paign is the PCUSA-affiliated activist group Israel-Palestine Mis­sion Net­work (IPMN), an anti-Israel orga­ni­za­tion work­ing with orga­ni­za­tions com­mit­ted to dele­git­imiz­ing Israel, includ­ing the Boy­cott, Divest­ment and Sanc­tions (BDS) move­ment and Jew­ish Voice for Peace.

IPMN is most infa­mously respon­si­ble for pub­lish­ing the so-called study guide “Zion­ism Unset­tled,” which prop­a­gates egre­gious anti-Israel themes long-peddled by Israel’s ene­mies, and is, at its core, an anti-Semitic doc­u­ment. Despite the obvi­ous offen­sive nature of this pub­li­ca­tion, as well as the Gen­eral Assembly’s approval of an over­ture stat­ing that Zion­ism Unset­tled does not “rep­re­sent the views of PCUSA,” it remains avail­able for pur­chase on the PUCSA web­site where it is absurdly mar­keted as a help­ful guide on how to “pro­mote more truth­ful rela­tion­ships among fol­low­ers of the three Abra­hamic religions.”

Presbyterian_Church_(U.S.A.)Equally trou­bling is the anti-Semitism which per­me­ates IPMN’s Face­book pages, as high­lighted in a new report by the Israel-based watch­dog orga­ni­za­tion NGO-Monitor. Accord­ing to the report, the IPMN Face­book page (which was shut down in Jan­u­ary 2012 after crit­i­cism over the post­ing of extrem­ist mate­ri­als and then reopened in July 2012 as a “closed but not secret” page) con­tains numer­ous post­ings and com­ments express­ing age-old anti-Semitic themes, as well as links to anti-Semitic arti­cles and web­sites. Exam­ples include:

  • Youtube video titled: “Zion­ist con­trolled America’s des­per­ate lust for Iran War”
  • Arti­cle in “Ugly Truth”, a blog run by the anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­rist Mark Glenn
  • Poster mock­ing “The genetic ances­try of Jews” and their his­toric con­nec­tion to the land of Israel
  • Car­toon depict­ing a stereo­typ­i­cal “ultra-Orthodox” Jew ruth­lessly killing an inno­cent Palestinian

While IPMN’s Face­book page only has about 300 mem­bers, the con­tent is con­sis­tent with and ampli­fies some of the anti-Israel and anti-Semitic themes con­tained in Zion­ism Unset­tled.

It is greatly trou­bling that despite IPMN’s evi­dent hos­til­ity towards Jews and anti-Israel ani­mus, PCUSA has not only failed to repu­di­ate their egre­gious views but still remains affil­i­ated with IPMN. There is no doubt that false­hoods pro­moted by IPMN in Zion­ism Unset­tled have neg­a­tively influ­enced the atti­tudes of some PCUSA mem­bers towards Israel, and per­haps even Jews, and pro­vided an offen­sive back­drop to the Gen­eral Assembly’s pas­sage of the Israel divest­ment resolution.

It is time for PCUSA to denounce IPMN for their abhor­rent views and fully dis­as­so­ci­ate itself from the organization.

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December 3, 2013 0

Denver Conference To Feature Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theorists

The Mus­lim Stu­dent Asso­ci­a­tion – Per­sian Speak­ing Group (MSA-PSG) will hold its 43rd annual con­fer­ence in Den­ver, Col­orado, which will draw the par­tic­i­pa­tion of sev­eral anti-Semites, con­spir­acy the­o­rists and Holo­caust deniers.msa-psg-iran-denver

The con­fer­ence, titled “Await­ing the Sav­ior,” is sched­uled for Decem­ber 26–29 and will include lec­tures and work­shop ses­sions with the pur­ported aim to dis­cuss “how Islam can help guide us in our await­ing time to be the true sup­port­ers of our Imam,” also known as the Mahdi, a mes­sianic fig­ure for Shi’a Muslims. 

The MSA-PGA was founded in 1970 by Mostafa Cham­ron, an Iran­ian anti-Shah activist when he was a stu­dent at the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia – Berke­ley. Cham­ron sub­se­quently returned to Iran after the 1979 Islamic Rev­o­lu­tion and served as defense min­is­ter and a mem­ber of par­lia­ment for the Islamic Repub­lic of Iran.

The orga­ni­za­tion has a his­tory of invit­ing anti-Semitic speak­ers and extrem­ists to its annual con­fer­ence. Among the list of speak­ers invited this year, and in pre­vi­ous years, are Muham­mad al Asi and Abdul Alim Musa. Al Asi and Musa are fre­quently invited to speak at anti-Israel events on cam­pus where they engage in anti-Semitic rhetoric dur­ing their speeches and lec­tures. Addi­tion­ally, both indi­vid­u­als have pub­licly sworn alle­giance to Iran’s supreme leader, Aya­tol­lah Ali Khamenei. Musa is also the leader of Sabiqun, an anti-Semitic Mus­lim group that advo­cates for the cre­ation of a global Islamic state.

Anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­rists Mark Glenn and Mark Dankof are also invited to speak at this year’s event. At the 2012 annual MSA-PSG con­fer­ence, Dankof made a series of con­spir­a­to­r­ial and anti-Semitic claims that Mus­lims and Chris­tians are under threat by Zion­ists. More­over, Dankof made a series of alle­ga­tions that Jews are in con­trol of Amer­i­can pol­i­tics, eco­nom­ics and media, and that Jew­ish con­spir­a­cies are behind impor­tant U.S. events, such as the assas­si­na­tion of Pres­i­dent Kennedy and the 9/11 ter­ror­ist attacks.

The orga­ni­za­tion, which is pri­mar­ily based in Los Ange­les, adheres to the strict prin­ci­ples of Twelver Shi’a Islam and the vir­u­lently anti-Semitic and anti-West ide­ol­ogy of the founder of the Islamic Repub­lic, Aya­tol­lah Ruhol­lah Khome­ini. Con­trary to its name, mem­bers of the MSA-PSG are not nec­es­sar­ily stu­dents. Many mem­bers are of Pak­istani or South Asian ori­gins who have pre­vi­ously spent time at Iran­ian sem­i­nar­ies and reli­gious insti­tu­tions. Pre­vi­ous years’ con­fer­ences have pri­mar­ily been held in Hous­ton and Chicago.

Another sched­uled speaker is Hamza Soda­gar, an Iranian-born cleric. At the 2010 Mus­lim Con­gress (MC) con­ven­tion, Soda­gar made sev­eral con­spir­a­to­r­ial charges, includ­ing one where he alleged Zion­ist con­trol over U.S. Muslims.

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November 22, 2013 0

Anti-Semitic Iran Film Festival Appeals To U.S. Extremists

The Office of Cul­tural Stud­ies for the Islamic Rev­o­lu­tion, an Iran­ian non-governmental orga­ni­za­tion that enjoys sup­port from high-ranking offi­cials in the Iran­ian gov­ern­ment, will hold the 4th annual Ammar Pop­u­lar Film Fes­ti­val (APFF) in Tehran from Jan­u­ary 3–11, 2014.ammar-film-festival-iran

The film fes­ti­val, which is named after one of the com­pan­ions of the Prophet Moham­mad, is solic­it­ing films on anti-American, anti-Israel and anti-Semitic top­ics. These include: “False-flag attacks: The Sep­tem­ber 11th attacks, the role of the Zion­ist Lobby and neo­cons, the Israeli attack to USS Lib­erty,” “the power of the Zion­ist Lobby in the US and Europe, includ­ing Chris­t­ian Zion­ism,” “ The role of Israeli Lob­bies in pro­mot­ing war,” and “Resis­tance against Zion­ist, not only in Pales­tine but also in USA and Europe.” The best sub­mis­sions will be entered into a competition.

The afore­men­tioned cat­e­gories only appear on the festival’s Eng­lish lan­guage web­site, which may sug­gest that orga­niz­ers are specif­i­cally seek­ing sub­mis­sions from extrem­ists that have pre­vi­ously been given a plat­form in Iran.

Con­sid­er­ing the con­spir­a­to­r­ial top­ics for this year’s sub­mis­sions, it is no sur­prise that the APFF has attracted inter­est from anti-Semites from out­side Iran, includ­ing Amer­i­can anti-Semites such as Holo­caust denier Michael Hoff­man, the edi­tor of the con­spir­a­to­r­ial Vet­er­ans Today, Gor­don Duff, and fre­quent Press TV con­trib­u­tor Mark Glenn.

Amer­i­can anti-Semites have been fre­quent par­tic­i­pants in anti-Semitic and Holo­caust deny­ing con­fer­ences in Iran, often under the guise of pro­mot­ing cul­tural and aca­d­e­mic under­stand­ing.  They also fre­quently appear on Press TV, Iran’s government-run English-language satel­lite news network.

Last year’s APFF included a meet­ing with Iran’s Supreme Leader Aya­tol­lah Ali Khamenei who encour­aged the audi­ence to incor­po­rate polit­i­cal mes­sages into films. He stated, “…cer­tain orga­ni­za­tions which pro­mote west­ern art such as Hol­ly­wood are com­pletely polit­i­cal. If it is not like this, why do they not allow Iran­ian films which are anti-Zionist to be nom­i­nated at film festivals?”

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