In this picture released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a ceremony marking the 29th anniversary of the death of the late revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini, at his mausoleum, just outside Tehran, Iran, Monday, June 4, 2018. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)
It’s so alarming you have to stop and read it twice. But it’s real. On Sunday, a Twitter account for Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader, called for the eradication of Israel.
“Our stance against Israel is the same stance we have always taken. Israel is a malignant cancerous tumor in the West Asian region that has to be removed and eradicated: it is possible and it will happen,” read the post.
It’s believed Khamenei does not run his own account and that this was in fact a quote repeating a remark he had said several years ago.
That only makes it worse. It means he’s been saying this for years.
Liberal MP Michael Levitt got it right, writing in response online: “The odious and repugnant Iranian regime makes clear its true intent,” he posted to Twitter. “This call to genocide must not be ignored. Iran must be held accountable by the international community.”
Michael Levitt, MP @LevittMichael
The odious & repugnant Iranian regime makes clear its true intent “#Israel is a malignant cancerous tumor….that has to be removed & eradicated.” This call to #genocide must not be ignored. #Iran must be held accountable by the international community. #cdnpoli
After his post, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland noted “Canada strongly condemns this incitement to violence, and condemns all of Iran’s threats against Israel.”
Appalled by the abhorrent statement from Supreme Leader Khamenei. Canada strongly condemns this incitement to violence, and condemns all of Iran’s threats against Israel. Canada is a loyal friend of Israel, and we will continue to support Israel’s right to live in peace.
But so far there has been relative silence around the world about this despicable call to eradicate an entire country and the people living within it. A remark like this should have world leaders lining up to denounce it.
It is these sorts of outrageous statements that should cause Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to think twice about cozying up to the Iranian regime. He’s already promised to re-open diplomatic relations with Iran and lift sanctions.
To do this would be to reward the Iranian regime’s behaviour. It would be one thing if lifting the sanctions benefited the long-suffering people of Iran. But the evidence has shown it does not.
The money that has entered Iran since former President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal was signed in 2015 has only benefited the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
We were told that current President Hassan Rouhani was a moderate, that he was a step forward from the flagrantly anti-Semitic Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Even if he is though, he does not control Khamenei. The hatred still runs deep.
Yet another example that Canada cannot go soft on the Iranian regime.