Khamenei and Eastwood.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Iranian Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has become the latest person to criticize US film American Sniper for its allegedly anti-Muslim message.
The Iraq war bipopic directed by Clint Eastwood tells the real-life story of late US Navy SEAL sharpshooter Chris Kyle, whose 160 kills in Iraq is considered the highest count ever in US military history. The film has been nominated for six Oscars including best picture and grossed over $300 million at the US box office.
It has become a flashpoint in US public debate
with some liberals and conservatives sparring over its portrayal of war, soldiers, and Eastwood's interpretation of the history leading up to the 2003 Iraq invasion.
The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee has said that its members have been targets of "violent threats" caused by the film's language directed at Muslims.
Khamenei attacked the film on his Twitter feed Monday, relaying via the social media network his quotes from a meeting with religious minorities in Iran.
"Islam says we should behave out of fairness& justice towards the followers of other religions," a message on Khamenei's Twitter account read. "Arrogants who claim justice don’t respect any fairness towards Muslim minorities living in Western countries."
"This isn’t abt why Muslims don’t have basic freedom in some parts of West; it is abt why they don't have physical safety!," he added.
"For ex. Hollywood’s “American Sniper”encourages a non-Muslim youngster to harass the Muslims as much possible," he tweeted, using the hashtag #ChapelHillShooting, in reference to the murder of three Muslims in North Carolina