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Of The National Anthem
Israel Is "Cancelled" In Berlin
Germany's socialists haven't changed. They just don't use the word
"National" any more.
Iranian calls for the destruction of Israel are almost routine these days.
But for a former official of the Islamic Republic to call for the destruction of
the Jewish state in the city where the Holocaust was planned adds a repugnant
twist - especially as the German government sponsored the event that gave the
man from Tehran a Western stage.
At a conference on the Mideast in Berlin on Wednesday, Muhammad Javad
Ardashir Larijani said the "Zionist project," which has "created only violence
and atrocities," should be "canceled." Mr. Larijani, a former deputy foreign
minister, is the brother of Iran's former nuclear negotiator and current
parliamentary speaker, Ali Larijani.
The conference organizers, the Peace Research Institute of Frankfurt, made
a clumsy attempt at damage control.
"We very much regret that the feelings of several Israeli participants were
hurt," the institute said in a statement, making it sound as if the problem was
with oversensitive Israelis rather than with the Iranian's call for the
destruction of their country.
While the institute said that it rejects Mr. Larijani's comments, it still
defended the decision to invite him. The institute says it wants to provide a
"forum where politicians and experts can exchange positions - also controversial
But calling for the destruction of a country isn't "controversial" - it's
beyond the realm of civilized debate. To give such views a "forum" is to give
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