Iranian President Calls To Transfer Israel to Europe

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad suggested Thursday to dismantle the Jewish State and rebuild it in Europe: "If the Europeans are honest they should give provinces in Europe… to the Zionists."

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Hillel Fendel , | updated: 11:14 AM

Speaking in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Ahmadinejad implied that guilt for the holocaust led European countries to support the establishment of the State of Israel. His words were filled with holocaust denial: "Some European countries insist on saying that Hitler killed millions of innocent Jews in furnaces, and they insist on it to the extent that if anyone proves something contrary to that, they condemn that person and throw them in jail."

"Although we don't accept this claim," Ahmadinejad said, "if we suppose it is true, our question for the Europeans is: Is the killing of innocent Jewish people by Hitler the reason for their support to the occupiers of Jerusalem?"

The Iranian president then suggested that the State of Israel be dismantled and rebuilt somewhere in Europe: "If the Europeans are honest they should give some of their provinces in Europe, like in Germany, Austria or other countries, to the Zionists, and the Zionists can establish their state in Europe. You offer part of Europe, and we will support it."

Israeli government spokesman Raanan Gissin was quoted as saying in response, "Just to remind Mr. Ahmadinejad, we've been here long before his ancestors were here. Therefore, we have a birthright to be here in the land of our forefathers and to live here."

Just two months ago, Ahmadinejad called for Israel to be "wiped off the map."

The Nazis murdered some 6-7 million Jews during the Holocaust years, mainly between 1939 and 1945. Holocaust denial, which the Anti-Defamation League calls "one of the most notable anti-Semitic propaganda movements to develop over the past two decades," is a violation of laws governing racial defamation and hate crimes in some western European countries and Canada.

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan also rejected the two aspects of Ahmadinejad's remarks. A spokesman for Annan said he was "shocked" to hear that the Iranian leader "reportedly cast doubt on the truth of the Holocaust and suggested that the State of Israel should be moved from the Middle East to Europe." Annan quoted a UN General Assembly resolution of last month rejecting “any denial of the Holocaust as an historical event,” and urged all countries “to combat such denial, and to educate their populations about the well established historical facts of the Holocaust, in which one third of the Jewish people were murdered, along with countless members of other minorities.”

U.S. spokesmen tied Ahmadinejad's remarks to the ongoing international concern over Iranian nuclear dangers. State Department spokesman J. Adam Ereli said the comments were "appalling and reprehensible," adding, "They certainly don't inspire hope among any of us in the international community that the government in Iran is prepared to engage as a responsible member of the community."

White House spokesman Scott McClellan said, "It just further underscores our concerns about the regime in Iran. And it's all the more reason why it's so important that the regime does not have the ability to develop nuclear weapons."

The LA Times reported today, "Israel and the United States have cited Iran's hostility toward the Jewish state as a reason that it must be prevented from developing nuclear weapons." In fact, however, U.S. spokesmen frequently refer to Iranian threats against "its neighbors."

More to the point, however, is this week's news that Iran has increased the range of its missiles to 1,250 miles, putting parts of Europe within reach as well.


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