Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Jews Flee Iran, Fearing Persecution: Sound Familiar?

"Comparisons are odious,"1 but I'll risk making this one.

"40 Iranian Jews Make Exodus from Iran, Arrive in Israel to Escape Dangers" (December 25, 2007) tells how, and why, these Jews left Iran.

One of the covert emigrants "told all his friends where he was going, and they wanted to come along. 'I was scared in Iran as a Jew,' he said. 'I would never be able to wear a skullcap in the streets there.' Others said they felt safe in Iran, discounting warnings that Jews could become targets."

Seeing that headline was "like deja vu all over again" for me. In April of 1933, Chancellor Hitler and his colleagues defined what they meant by "non-Aryan," and what they intended to do about people who weren't part of the herrenvolk.

About three quarters of a century ago, intellectuals and Jews started leaving Germany, before the Nazi regime made life unpleasant and brief.

Today, some Jews are leaving Iran for about the same reason.

There are obvious differences between 1933 and 2007.

For starters, the leaders of Iran aren't Aryan. Actually, they are, but not the way the Nazis used the term.

On the other hand, then and now, nominally-democratic regimes with clearly-defined philosophies are removing people, and ideas, that their leaders don't like.

I'm seriously concerned.
1 Samuel Johnson (1709-1784). The quote, in context, is
"Asked by a Scot what Johnson thought of Scotland: 'That it is a very vile country, to be sure, Sir' 'Well, Sir! (replies the Scot, somewhat mortified), God made it.' Johnson: 'Certainly he did; but we must always remember that he made it for Scotchmen, and comparisons are odious, Mr. S------; but God made hell.' "
(Quotes on Scotland, The Samuel Johnson Sound Bite Page)
Johnson's witticism has been paraphrased to refer to Texas, as well as other places and topics.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.