Organizer of Holocaust-denying cartoon comp has new theme: coronavirus

Iranian propagandist Masoud Shojaei-Tabatabaei, who has previously organized two competitions mocking the Holocaust, has launched another peddling coronavirus conspiracy theories.

A medical team sprays disinfectant to sanitize Imam Reza's holy shrine, following the coronavirus outbreak, in Mashhad, Iran (photo credit: WANA NEWS AGENCY/REUTERS)
A medical team sprays disinfectant to sanitize Imam Reza's holy shrine, following the coronavirus outbreak, in Mashhad, Iran
(photo credit: WANA NEWS AGENCY/REUTERS)
An Iranian artist who organized a Holocaust-mocking cartoon competition has turned his hand to a new topic: coronavirus conspiracy theories.
His "We Defeat Coronavirus" competition has received more than 2,000 submissions from cartoonists in 68 countries, the artist and veteran propagandist Masoud Shojaei-Tabatabaei told media outlets in Tehran on Wednesday, according to The Algemeiner. Several of the submissions have come from artists in China, he said.
The cartoons centered around theories put forward by the Iranian regime that America is responsible for coronavirus, and is using the disease to defeat China and Iran. One submission to the competition featured a missile being launched by the US, with a note from US President Donald Trump reading "To China and Iran, with my love."
Another featured a coughing man with a coronavirus microbe on his shoulder. Behind his back, an enlarged hand draped with the American flag is snatching his medicine away.
Shojaei-Tabatabaei has previously organized two Holocaust-questioning cartoon competitions in Iran, in 2006 and again in 2016, both featuring cartoons that mocked and denied the Holocaust. In May 2016, the Islamic Propaganda Organization displayed more than 150 cartoons from the latter event in an exhibition.
“We held the Holocaust Contest to raise the question of why the Holocaust cannot be discussed in the West despite its claims of freedom of expression,” Shojaei-Tabatabaei explained at the time, praising the "pure nature" of the artists who, he said, were opposed to the "child-killing regime of Israel."
Under instructions from the regime in Tehran, Iranian media has been pushing conspiracy theories about coronavirus onto the public, including describing the virus as a "biological weapon" and a "CIA plot" to destabilize the country. Iran's Health Ministry, under orders from the supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei, is trying to determine whether the virus is a biological attack, specifically targeting Iranians through DNA manipulation to make them susceptible.
Meanwhile, the regime has been refusing US offers of aid to defeat the virus, denouncing it as a "big lie," while at the same time is calling for sanctions by America imposed over its nuclear program to be lifted.
“Due to Iran’s national mobilization against the virus and the full use of the medical capacity of the armed forces, it is not necessary for now for hospital beds to be set up by foreign forces, and their presence is ruled out,” Alireza Vahabzadeh, adviser to Iran’s health minister, said on Tuesday, according to The Algemeiner.


Tags Propaganda