Iranian media showed strong reactions after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu distorted the history of Iran’s civilization by terming it “anti-Semitic”.
In his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Netanyahu claimed that Iranians tried, 2500 years ago, to decimate the Jewish nation, but failed to do so. Netanyahu further said Jews hold celebrations on Sundays and Mondays marking their freedom from the hands of Iranians!
According to a report by IFP News, the comments came under spotlight by Iranian media and turned into one of the most visited posts on social media networks. In reaction to Netanyahu’s remarks, some Iranian users of social media networks touched upon the role of Cyrus the Great, the founder of the Achaemenid dynasty, in offering shelter to Israelites, giving them religious freedom and recognising Judaism. They dismissed Netanyahu’s claim as a distortion of history and disrespect for Cyrus.
Netanyahu also said in the meeting with Putin that Iranians today are descendants of their ancestors who lived in ancient times, and hence, they, too, try to exterminate the Jewish people. He noted Iranians say this loud and clear and write it on their ballistic missiles.
In response to Netanyahu, the Russian president said the story belongs to the 5th century BCE, and that people are living in a different world today and should talk together about today’s world.
Now, the key question which has escaped the attention of social media activists as well as analysts of news and political events is why Netanyahu has resorted to ancient times and seeks to explain the situation today by distorting history.
What objective is he pursuing by denying and distorting an undeniable fact, which is a milestone not only in the Iranian history, but in the human history as well? Is he unaware of the content of the Cyrus Cylinder, which is regarded as heritage of the human civilization as well as the first human rights charter? The Cyrus Cylinder is a cylinder of clay inscribed in Akkadian cuneiform script, and is sometimes referred to as the Cyrus’s Command. It openly speaks of the freedom of followers of different religions in territories under the Achaemenid rule. Moreover, all Orientalists recognise Iran’s giving refuge to Jews as a milepost in the ancient history of Iran. So, the question is, is Netanyahu’s knowledge about human history that little?
Three years ago, the Israeli premier sought to distort scientific facts with a childish cartoon and tried to create the impression that Iran was close to developing an atomic bomb. At that time, he had a clear motive for his actions and was one of the key players in the Iranophobia scenario. But now, what does Netanyahu have in mind by distorting historical facts and claiming that the desire to wipe out the Jewish people has been a historical ambition of Iranians?
In that meeting, Putin reportedly asked the Israeli premier to talk about today, not the distant past. But even Putin’s remarks seem not appropriate! When Netanyahu speaks of Iranian-made missiles with “Israel must be wiped out” written on them in Hebrew, it shows he is aware of the present time and has not come to visit Putin to review the ancient history.
Netanyahu’s distortion of history sheds light on his presupposition that Iranians (even before they converted to Islam) and the Iranian civilisation are, by nature, enemies of him and the Jews. Moreover, it reveals he seeks to “Iranise” the fight against Israel’s aggressive nature.
If Netanyahu succeeds in creating the impression that “enmity toward Jews” is a historical ambition of Iranians dating back to the ancient Persian Empire, he will take a key step toward completing a scenario of “reconciliation with Arab states” and the formation of an “anti-Islamic Arab alliance.” Then, the strategy of “creating unity among Islamic states and nations against the Tel Aviv regime” will be superseded by one of “creating unity among regional states and people against Iran, a government and nation that, he claims, cherishes the idea of reviving their ancient empire.”
And that’s not all. Netanyahu and his cronies along with countries supporting Israel have, for years, sought to portray “fighting occupation” as “hostility toward Judaism and Jewish people.” They want to portray a basic right of humans accepted by all freedom seekers, no matter what their religion or ethnicity is, as a racist and cruel anti-Semitic move aimed at making millions of Jews homeless. It has been years that the Zionists interpret the “elimination of occupiers and occupation” as “determination to decimate a government and people that are followers of a divine faith” and insist that this fabricated story is true.
The meeting between Netanyahu and Putin unmasked a scenario formed by distortion of two facts:
The first distorted story dates back to the time when the Israeli regime was established in Palestine. Occupation and incessant building of Jewish settlements on the one hand, and accusing those fighting the occupation of “bearing enmity and grudge” toward an ethnic group for no good reason on the other. This distortion and deception is not a new tactic.
The second distortion, however, is a new scenario. The allegation that animosity toward Jews is a historical issue which has its roots in Ancient Persia! This lie creates the impression that extermination of the Jewish people is an aspiration pursued by Iranians. That would turn the cause of Palestine and the issue of fighting occupiers into and Iranian issue, not an Arab, Islamic and humanitarian one. That would change the meaning of “fighting occupation” and distort facts on the origin of animosity toward the Israeli regime.