FAR­RAKHAN

The Washington Times Daily - - NATION -

to “pull the trig­ger of war in the Mid­dle East at the in­sis­tence of Is­rael.”

“The Chris­tians say that Satan is a liar, and ev­ery day they keep a count of Trump’s lies,” Mr. Far­rakhan said at a meet­ing with Mohsen Rezaee, sec­re­tary of Iran’s Ex­pe­di­ency Dis­cern­ment Coun­cil, which serves as an ad­vi­sory board to the supreme leader, Ay­a­tol­lah Ali Khamenei, ac­cord­ing to The Jerusalem Post.

In other words, the 85-year-old Far­rakhan has yet to cool his rhetoric de­spite com­ing un­der fire last week­end for the “death to Amer­ica” chant at the Univer­sity of Tehran.

Au­dio and video from his ap­pear­ance show him speak­ing the Farsi words for “death to,” which sound like “marg bar.”

“Amer­ica hates when you say, ‘Marg bar Is­rael.’ Am I say­ing it right?” asked Mr. Far­rakhan, flanked by Ira­nian of­fi­cials, at an ap­pear­ance be­fore stu­dents and me­dia.

Sev­eral peo­ple in the au­di­ence cor­rected his pro­nun­ci­a­tion. He then said “marg bar” twice, to which they an­swered “Amer­ica” and “Is­rael.” The crowd laughed as a smil­ing Mr. Far­rakhan shouted, “OK!”

Does that mean he led a chant? The Ira­nian tele­vi­sion an­nouncer thought so, say­ing in Farsi, “Lis­ten to the leader of the Na­tion of Is­lam chant­ing ‘Death to Amer­ica,’” although Mr. Far­rakhan did not say “Amer­ica.”

“I asked a ques­tion about how to pro­nounce the chant in Farsi dur­ing my meet­ing with Ira­nian stu­dents, and an ex­am­i­na­tion of the video shows just that,” Mr. Far­rakhan said. “My point was to en­gage stu­dents in a talk about what gives a na­tion per­pe­tu­ity ver­sus that which un­der­mines and de­stroys a na­tion.”

Not ev­ery­one was buy­ing his ex­pla­na­tion, given that the au­to­matic re­join­ders to “death to” in Iran would be “Amer­ica” or “Is­rael.”

Cor­nell Law School pro­fes­sor William A. Ja­cob­son called the de­nial “ex­tremely un­per­sua­sive, given his his­tory,” a ref­er­ence to Mr. Far­rakhan’s record of anti-Semitic jabs, such as last month’s tweet re­fer­ring to Jews as ter­mites.

“If his de­fense is he only spoke the words ‘death to’ but he didn’t lead the chant, that seems to be the equiv­a­lent over what the def­i­ni­tion of ‘is’ is,” said Mr. Ja­cob­son, who runs the con­ser­va­tive Le­gal In­sur­rec­tion blog.

Af­ter the “death to Amer­ica” ex­change, Mr. Far­rakhan told the univer­sity au­di­ence, “If you mean death to Amer­ica, death to Is­rael, then you must mean life for Is­lam, life for Iran, life for Mus­lims.”

Mr. Far­rakhan also blasted the U.S. sanc­tions on Iran as “un­just” and warned the crowd not to trust the U.S. gov­ern­ment.

“That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t com­mu­ni­cate with Amer­ica, but you should know who you’re com­mu­ni­cat­ing with,” Mr. Far­rakhan said. “You’re com­mu­ni­cat­ing with those who make promises that they never in­tend to keep.”

His in­cen­di­ary mis­sives dur­ing the high-pro­file Iran tour come at an awk­ward mo­ment for his lib­eral U.S. sup­port­ers, start­ing with Women’s March lead­ers Tamika Mal­lory and Linda Sar­sour, as they pre­pare for a third mas­sive anti-Trump rally in Jan­uary.

Ac­tress and lib­eral ac­tivist Alyssa Mi­lano said this week that she won’t speak at the march in Wash­ing­ton un­less his Women’s March al­lies de­nounce him for his anti-Semitism.

“Any­time that there is any big­otry or anti-Semitism in that re­spect, it needs to be called out and ad­dressed. I’m dis­ap­pointed in the lead­er­ship of the Women’s March that they haven’t done it ad­e­quately,” Miss Mi­lano told The Ad­vo­cate.

Con­gres­sional Black Cau­cus mem­bers also have come un­der fire for meet­ing and ap­pear­ing with Mr. Far­rakhan over the years, and while sev­eral have con­demned his more in­flam­ma­tory re­marks, they have steered clear of crit­i­ciz­ing him per­son­ally.

In his Thurs­day state­ment, Mr. Far­rakhan in­sisted that “I am not and have never been an enemy to Amer­ica, nor the peo­ple of Amer­ica.

“How­ever, I love Amer­ica enough to speak un­pleas­ant truths that are in the best in­ter­ests of an erring na­tion that per­haps she may change her con­duct and course,” he said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.