Iranian Holocaust Conference Will Showcase Deniers and Anti-Semites From Around the World; ADL Urges European Leaders to Speak Out
Update: The Iranian Holocaust denial conference brought together a diverse group of anti-Semites, including white supremacists and neo-Nazis, radical anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian activists, and Islamic fundamentalists. The gathering included racists such as David Duke, former Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, and notorious Western anti-Semites and known Holocaust deniers, as well as members of Neturei Karta, a fringe anti-Israel Jewish group that advocates the "dismantling" of the Jewish state of Israel. More
New York, NY, December 7, 2006 â€¦ The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today urged European leaders to condemn an upcoming conference in Iran titled, "Review of the Holocaust: Global Vision," in which the Iranian government will feature dozens of speakers questioning the historical fact of the Holocaust.
"We believe this type of Holocaust denial has no place in the family of nations, and that it is essential for European and world leaders to condemn this conference and everything it stands for at its core, which is anti-Semitism," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor.
"Holocaust denial is an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory that posits that Jews, for their own selfish purposes, created a monstrous tale of their own destruction and deliberately inflicted the hoax on the entire world," added Mr. Foxman. "It presumes that Jews control the international media and all other forms of information, for how else could such a 'fantasy' flourish the way it has."
The conference, scheduled to take place next week in Tehran, follows on the heels of a cartoon contest sponsored by the Iranian government, in which cartoonists from around the world were given awards for drawings that mocked the Holocaust and attacked Israel and Jews.
While Tehran has refused to release a list of participants, Bradley Smith, a U.S.-based Holocaust denier, has boasted to supporters that at least ten notorious Holocaust deniers from around the world will present papers, including Robert Faurisson of France, Jurgen Graf of Switzerland, Michele Renouf of the U.K. and Ahmed Rami of Sweden. Mark Weber of the Institute for Historical Review, a major purveyor of Holocaust denial materials based in California, has said that while he will not be attending, his organization is providing a video presentation to be shown to delegates.
In a letter to European leaders, ADL urged their governments and the European Union to publicly denounce the conference.
"This conference seeks to question the record of the Holocaust and is a disgrace to the memories of the six million Jews and others who died at the hands of the Nazis," said the League's letter, whose recipients include Prime Minister Tony Blair of the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Romano Prodi of Italy, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Jacques Chirac of France and Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen of Finland, who also serves as President of the European Union.
ADL praised U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan for his strong statement, issued today, condemning the Iranian Holocaust conference and "any effort to question or deny the Holocaust." Mr. Annan said that, "â€¦any attempt to cast doubt on the reality of this unique and undeniable horror must be firmly resisted by all people of goodwill and of whatever faith."
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.