Are the Reports True? UPDATE: False Report

Though not yet confirmed, the National Post reported today that the Iranian parliament passed a law that is ominously reminiscent of the Holocaust. Amir Taheri, who authored the piece, writes:

The law mandates the government to make sure that all Iranians wear "standard Islamic garments" designed to remove ethnic and class distinctions reflected in clothing, and to eliminate "the influence of the infidel" on the way Iranians, especially, the young dress. It also envisages separate dress codes for religious minorities, Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians, who will have to adopt distinct colour schemes to make them identifiable in public. The new codes would enable Muslims to easily recognize non-Muslims so that they can avoid shaking hands with them by mistake, and thus becoming najis (unclean).

The report continues:

Religious minorities would have their own colour schemes. They will also have to wear special insignia, known as zonnar, to indicate their non-Islamic faiths. Jews would be marked out with a yellow strip of cloth sewn in front of their clothes while Christians will be assigned the colour red. Zoroastrians end up with Persian blue as the colour of their zonnar. It is not clear what will happen to followers of other religions, including Hindus, Bahais and Buddhists, not to mention plain agnostics and atheists, whose very existence is denied by the Islamic Republic.

Let me be very clear on this point: the veracity of the original article has not yet been confirmed (and hopefully it will be discredited).

Several responses to the new law have been issued.

Said Israel’s Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter:

Whoever makes Jews anywhere wear the yellow star again, will find themselves in a coffin draped in black.

Said Ophir Paz-Pines, member of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee in the Knesset:

The State of Israel was created after the Holocaust in order to ensure it would not be repeated. The yellow star is a bright red warning sign that obligates us to muster the entire world in the face of events there [Iran].

Said Meretz Chairman Yossi Beilin:

Israel could no longer be satisfied with warnings, and that the moment Jews are forced to wear the yellow band, Israel must act to evacuate all Jews from Iran . . . Israel must stand at the forefront of efforts to separate Iran's crazy and Hitlerite regime from government control.

I will refrain from issuing any condemnations of the Iranian regime until this report is either confirmed or discredited. If true, however, then I submit that the combined forces of the Western world are incapable of inflicting the level of pain that these lawmakers would deserve.

UPDATE: The reports are false. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the 13 page legislation and nowhere did it mention a dress code for religious minorities. According to the Jerusalem Post:

A draft law being considered by Iran's parliament encourages the wearing of Islamic clothing to protect the country's Muslim identity, according to a copy of the bill obtained by The Associated Press on Saturday.

The 13-article bill, which received preliminary approval a week ago, makes no mention of requiring special attire for religious minorities.

Posted by Dr Politico at May 19, 2006 9:21 PM
Comments
Comment #149627

Jerusalem Post is still running the story.

Ha’aretz claims it is highly unlikely.

Posted by: Dr Politico at May 19, 2006 10:46 PM
Comment #149628

I hope it is discredited, or else it would be a very scary day in our world.

-einghf

Posted by: Einghf at May 19, 2006 10:46 PM
Comment #149629

I am with Einghf I hope it is not true. then where do we go?

Posted by: Randall Jeremiah at May 19, 2006 10:53 PM
Comment #149637

Iran report of Holocaust-style badges questioned

Posted by: Adrienne at May 19, 2006 11:14 PM
Comment #149643

If it’s true I wouldn’t be surprised. the Muslims were allies of Germany in WWII. The Emir of Jerusalem even assisted the Nazis in devising the “final solution”.

Posted by: traveller at May 19, 2006 11:35 PM
Comment #149649

Traveller,

You’re absolutely right. In fact, Ahmadinejad’s repeated denial of the Holocaust is all the more ironic when one considers the strong connection that existed between Iran and Hitler’s regime. Also, under the leadership of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, to whom Yasser Arafat was proudly related, the entire Islamic world enjoyed close ties to Hitler and the Holocaust. Edwin Black of the San Francisco Chronicle cleverly points out that Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust denial is “more like self-denial.” He continues:

Iran’s axis with the Third Reich began during the prewar years … allowing them to use the city as a base for … agitation against the British and the region’s Jews.

(…)

Relations between Berlin and Tehran were strong from the moment Hitler came to power in 1933. At that time, Reza Shah Pahlavi’s nation was known as Persia. The shah became a stalwart admirer of Hitler, Nazism and the concept of the Aryan master race.

(…)

So intense was the shah’s identification with the Third Reich that in 1935 he renamed his ancient country Iran which in Farsi means Aryan.

(…)

Shortly after World War II broke out in 1939, the Mufti of Jerusalem crafted a strategic alliance with Hitler to exchange Iraqi oil for active Arab and Islamic participation in the murder of Jews in the Mideast and Eastern Europe. This was predicated on support for a pan-Arab state and Arab control over Palestine.
During the war years, Iran became a haven for Gestapo agents. It was from Iran that the seeds of the abortive 1941 pro-Nazi coup in Baghdad were planted.

Read full article here.

Ahmadinejad’s claim that the Palestinians are being punished for the crimes of the Europeans are belied by historical fact. The Islamic world at large actively participated in the horrific crimes perpetrated by Hitler’s regime.

Posted by: Dr Politico at May 19, 2006 11:50 PM
Comment #149654

I sure hope that the reports are false. But I’m afraid they aint. If they are true it’s going to interesting to see where the UN will be on it. Will it condemn it in word only and let another holocaust take place? Or will it take steps to insure that one won’t?
If the UN allows Iran to get by with starting another holocaust it will loose what little credibility it has left.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 20, 2006 12:10 AM
Comment #149662

Dr,
Beware of misinformation and propaganda. This article sure looks suspicious.

The author is a member of the Benador Group. His recent article in the May 2006 Commentary magazine assures us everything is Iraq is going very well.
http://www.benadorassociates.com/article/19499

With friends like the Neocons of the Benador Group, who needs enemies?

After WWI, the map of the Middle East was drawn by Britain & France with the interests of their oil companies in mind. The cooperation between Muslims & Nazis was motivated as much by opposition to a common enemy, the British, as much as oppostion to Zionism or other motivation.

Did you know Churchill wanted to gas the Iraqis in the early 1920’s? The means for aerial delivery were not finished in time to use gas on the Iraqis.

Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 12:28 AM
Comment #149672

phx8,

It is a suspicious article, which is why I included the warnings. However, the Jerusalem Post is running it. Altenatively, Haaretz has noted that it seems very unlikely. I’m just confused as to why it’s taking so long to get the facts straight.

Of course, having a guy like Ahmadinejad in control doesn’t help. Indeed, the potential for truth is the scariest aspect of this story.

Posted by: Dr Politico at May 20, 2006 12:47 AM
Comment #149676

NOT TRUE
Iran: Lawmakers Debate Women’s Clothing
Associated Press May 20, 2006

… Emad Afroogh, the legislator who sponsored the bill and is chairman of Parliament’s Cultural Committee, said that the Canadian report was untrue and that the measure sought only to make women dress more conservatively and avoid Western fashions. Another lawmaker, Morris Motamed, a Jew, also said the Canadian report was false.

ALSO NOT TRUE that Iran cooperated with the Nazis. Edwin Blacks claims about Iran are disgustingly false. See Iran, Jews and the Holocaust: An answer to Mr. Black by Dr Abbas Milani of Stanford University.

Posted by: hass at May 20, 2006 1:05 AM
Comment #149683

Hass,

Thanks for pointing out that article by Dr Abbas Milani. If Edwin Black fabricated that story, it is absolutely unforgivable. He authored a book on the topic and I plan to examine his sources.

Posted by: Dr Politico at May 20, 2006 1:29 AM
Comment #149697

If this is a false story, as it is beginning to appear, who is planting the stories? And why?

Posted by: gergle at May 20, 2006 4:43 AM
Comment #149700

A cautionary note about Dr. Milani’s article, the recognition of Israel occurred during a moderate period of Irans history. Iran held a prowestern stance during that period. After the overthrow of the Shaw, the new Iran cannot be described as moderate by any standard. If this story is true, it is consistent with the gradual reduction of freedom of dissent and the rejection of tolerance for things secular.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 20, 2006 5:07 AM
Comment #149723

As much as you’d love the story to be true (“hey, that’s BETTER than WMD…”), it isn’t. This is all so nauseatingly familiar. Don’t expect it to work this time.

Here’s the link that clears the table.

Posted by: Jeff Seltzer at May 20, 2006 10:46 AM
Comment #149725

The report is false. The Jerusalem Post reports:

A draft law being considered by Iran’s parliament encourages the wearing of Islamic clothing to protect the country’s Muslim identity, according to a copy of the bill obtained by The Associated Press on Saturday.

The 13-article bill, which received preliminary approval a week ago, makes no mention of requiring special attire for religious minorities.


Posted by: Dr Politico at May 20, 2006 11:03 AM
Comment #149886

Traveller:

If it’s true I wouldn’t be surprised. the Muslims were allies of Germany in WWII. The Emir of Jerusalem even assisted the Nazis in devising the “final solution”.

Tell that to TE Lawrence and Emir Faisal bin Hussein. Some Muslims may have allied with Germany, but others were our own allies. Emir Faisal even supported the Jewish Zionist movement initially, though the agreement he struck was not honored. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faisal-Weizmann_Agreement

Dr Politico:

The report is false. The Jerusalem Post reports:
A draft law being considered by Iran’s parliament encourages the wearing of Islamic clothing to protect the country’s Muslim identity, according to a copy of the bill obtained by The Associated Press on Saturday.

Hmm, so as it turns out it’s actually little more than our own congress has just done by making our national language English… they made their national dress code Arab. What could be wrong with that? They’re promoting Assimilation of their immigrants! Aren’t the conservatives all about that here in America?

Posted by: Jarandhel at May 21, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #149917

Jarandhel,

First, Iranians are not Arabs.

Second, the position of religious minorities in Iran cannot be compared to the position of immigrants in the US, let alone illegal immigrants.

As for a national language, I think Iran already has one: Farsi. Don’t most countries have an official language? I’m guessing they do, but let me know if I’m wrong. I don’t care enough to research it on my own.

Posted by: Dr Politico at May 21, 2006 1:21 PM
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