Monday, May 22, 2006

Iranian badge story false

Jewschool quotes a number of newspaper articles from the Canadian press which demonstrate that the story about Iranian badges is based on false information. Mobius says, "What seems apparent from this, at least to me, is that powerful forces are attempting to build international support for an invasion of Iran by equating its actions with that of Nazi Germany’s loudly in the press." He may be right about the National Post in Canada - their front page certainly made that point, with the headline of "Iran Eyes Badges for Jews" and under it a photograph of two Jews in Germany wearing the yellow star. But again, as I've stated in my comments to my previous post, this was not the only point that Taheri was making in his article - he wrote about how this law might affect Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians in Iran, rather than singling out Jews.

In any case, regardless of what Iran may or may not be doing, I certainly do not support a U.S. war against Iran, which I think would be disastrous for the U.S., Iran, and Israel.

Update: The Jerusalem Post has also published an article denying the truth of the story, and describing what impact this new law, which deals with recommended "Islamic dress", might have on Iranian women.

See also this posting by Andrew Sullivan: "I've now read enough to feel confident in saying that the Canada National Post story about Jews in Iran being forced to wear yellow badges is almost certainly bunk. The Jewish delegate in Iran's pseudo-parliament denies it....Was this active disinformation? If so, who was behind it? And for what purpose? That seems to me to be the next salient question."

Further Update: Haaretz has an interesting article on the retraction of the story about the Iranian badges: "Yesterday, after it emerged that the report had been false, the affair of 'the yellow patch that wasn't' left us with one lesson: The world is ready to believe anything when it comes to a country ruled by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.... '[The Iranian president] has aroused a tense mood of hostility toward himself and toward Iran," Iran expert Javedanfar said. "The Western world's readiness to accept without question this false accusation is an attempt to settle accounts with Ahmadinejad. It is as if the Western world was saying to him: Just as you are willing to be inaccurate when it comes to historical facts about the Holocaust, so we can pay you back in kind,' Javedanfar continued."

1 comment:

  1. Kudos for the unambiguous follow-up with the question of motivation for the false story clearly highlighted.

    As I write this, some on-line are still defending the accuracy of the original report and denouncing as 'liberal appeasers' or even 'anti-semetic' those who pointed out how goofy it was. Many embraced the story fiercely as re-inforcement for a narrative that's been strongly promoted and were unwilling to relinquish it.

    The real follow up we should all be doing to this story now, is to take a long hard look at those promoting that narrative, such as Mr Taheri, the Benador Associates group and The National Post and it's own history of distortion and bias. The Post was founded by Conrad Black who also owned the equally right-wing Jerusalem Post. It is currently owned by the Asper family buisiness Can-West.

    It is also worthwhile, if perilous, to point out that in the same week this story of a false racist law in Iraq blew up into a huge media fire-storm, a real law was approved, barely, by Israel's Supreme Court that splits up marriages and destroys families and has been denounced as a racist and ethnic cleansing law both inside and out of Israel.

    There's an old saying that 'a lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still getting it's boots on.'