'Teheran using classic anti-Semitism'

Says director of thinktank on anti-Semitism; Mofaz: Any means valid to stop Iranian nuclearization.

iran nuclear new 224.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
iran nuclear new 224.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
Iran's dehumanizing Israel is a modern form of classical anti-Semitism, Charles Asher Small, director of the Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism, said on Wednesday. "The regime attempts to garner support in its use of classical anti-Semitic tropes," he said, speaking at a two-day conference on the challenges posed by Iran, sponsored by the Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism in New Haven, Connecticut. Teheran was scapegoating Jews while cracking down on dissent at home, Small said. "The most dangerous thing is the inaction of our leaders - students and faculty, Jewish leadership and leadership of the Western world - to confront Iran on genocidal anti-Semitism and abuses in its own community." Canadian legislator Irwin Cotler, a keynote speaker at the conference, said the precursors to genocide were more present in Iran than they were prior to any past genocide. "We have learned the danger of state-sanctioned incitement to genocide, and the dangers of indifference and inaction," Cotler said. "What differentiates other genocides and [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad, is that all those have occurred, this is only one we have the responsibility to prevent." To do that, Cotler advocated taking legal measures specified in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which calls on states to hold each other accountable for incitement and the like. "Incitement to genocide is greeted almost with a yawn," said Cotler. "There has not been one referral by a UN agency to hold Ahmadinejad accountable." "Instead of talking about military action and all problems, why don't we use legal remedies, hold him to account, around which there is a clear consensus," the former Canadian justice minister said. "If we don't do anything, we are repeating the pattern of international indifference and inaction." Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz also addressed the conference. He repeated remarks made earlier in Washington and reported in Thursday's Jerusalem Post to the effect that Iran will likely achieve control of the technology required to enrich uranium for an atomic bomb within a year, again citing an updated Israeli intelligence assessment. In the past, the consensus in the intelligence community was that Iran had encountered technical difficulties with fuel enrichment and that its attainment of nuclear capability was much further off, Mofaz said, but a recent IDF Military Intelligence assessment showed that the "point of no return" with regards to Iran going nuclear was 2010. Speaking on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Mofaz linked the Nazi atrocities with the threat posed by Teheran, saying that Israel would not accept a nuclear Iran. "The Iranian regime is the No. 1 threat to mankind in the 21st century. It is a multi-dimensional, multi-armed threat, which increases every day, every hour," he said. The diplomatic route was the best way to go, he said, "But we must set two timetables - one for rating the Iranian progress and the other to rate the effects of the sanctions. Should those two prove mutually exclusive, we mustn't exclude any of our options." Every scenario must be prepared for, he said, and any way of ensuring Iran did not go nuclear would be valid.