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May 11, 2012

Iranian Organizations Publishing Anti-Semitic Islamic School Textbooks

The Alavi Foundation, a New York-based Iranian organization that also operates as the Mostazafan Foundation, and Al Balagh, an Iran-based publishing house, have been publishing English-language religious books for children that promote anti-Semitism and conspiracy theories, according to a recent Canadian news report.

The books contain passages contrasting Islam with “the Jews and the Nazis,” as well as descriptions of Jews as a “racist,” “treacherous” and “crafty” people.

The books, A Glance at the life of the Holy Prophet of Islam and Prophet Muhammad: A Brief Biography, justify engagement in violent acts of jihad “whenever the time comes for it,” and claim that the Jews of Medina “conspired to kill Prophet Muhammad” after signing covenants with Muhammad and his early followers.

One of the books even highlights to the reader that the very name “Jew” has become “synonymous for treachery” and “the slaying of prophets.”

The Alavi Foundation describes itself as a non-governmental organization that promotes Iranian and Islamic culture in the U.S. Prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the Alavi Foundation was named the Pahlavi Foundation, after the Shah of Iran, and provided scholastic scholarships to young Iranians wishing to study in the U.S. Upon seizing power, Ayatollah Khomeini renamed the foundation to the Mostazafan Foundation (Farsi for “the downtrodden”), and is now called the Alavi Foundation. The names of the foundation are often used interchangeably. The organization claims that it is not an organ of the Iranian regime, but U.S. prosecutors seized the foundation’s assets and arrested its president in 2008.

Recently the two books were found to be in use at a Toronto-based Islamic school, the East End Madrassa. Following complaints the school removed the publications from its websites and course curricula.

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