Start of Main Content

Iranian Perspectives on the Holocaust and Antisemitism

Listen to Iranians speak about present-day antisemitism, discrimination, Holocaust denial, propaganda, and the dangers of totalitarian regimes.

  • Reza Aslan is disturbed by what he calls the “global cosmic conflict” between the West and radical Islamism.

  • Following an international meeting of Holocaust deniers in Tehran in 2006, Iranian exile Ladan Boroumand published a statement deploring the fact that denial of the Holocaust has become a propaganda tool for Iran's leaders today.

  • Iranian-born Rita Jahanforuz is one of the biggest pop stars in Israel. With the release of her recent album, sung almost entirely in her native Farsi, Rita is developing a fan base in Iran as well, despite the fact that her music is banned there. Although she does not consider herself a political person, Rita is proof that individuals can challenge a system of state-sponsored antisemitism by reaching across cultural boundaries. 

  • Dr. Kavian Milani is a practicing member of the Baha'i faith, a physician, and an advocate for human rights. When Milani was growing up in Iran, his father was killed by the regime because of his faith. Today Milani draws on the Baha'i ideals to fight tyranny and to break the cycle of divide and conquer that is at the heart of all dangerous regimes, including the Nazi regime. 

  • In his book, Fariborz Mokhtari brings to light the story of Abdol Hossein Sardari, sometimes called “the Iranian Schindler” for his efforts to save Jews during World War II. Mokhtari hopes to encourage new conversations about the Holocaust and about Iran.

  • Hasan Sarbakhshian and Parvaneh Vahidmanesh gathered stories and photographs from Iran's dwindling Jewish population for their book Iranian Jews. The effort would eventually cause them to flee Iran, their homeland, for the United States.