When is a Jew-hater not a Jew-hater?
Actor Mel Gibson's "Jews cause all the wars" drunk driving tirade elicited a coast-to-coast butt-whupping. A contrite Mel Gibson apologized -- twice -- entered rehab and asked to speak with prominent Jewish figures to map out a "path for healing." But last Sunday, a puzzled Gibson probably cut off his television, shouting, "Where's CBS's Mike Wallace when I need him?"
You see, Wallace just aired his "60 Minutes" interview with the president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, an on-the-record, unrepentant Jew-hater and Holocaust-denier.
Ahmadinejad, at the October 2005 "World Without Zionism" conference, said, "The Jewish-Zionist state occupying Jerusalem must be wiped off the map." Following denials that Ahmadinejad would never use an English idiom like "wiped off the map," some Persian language specialists translated the sentence as, "This regime that is occupying Jerusalem must be eliminated from the pages of history."
And, oh, about America, Ahmadinejad said, "And God willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world without the United States and Zionism." On another occasion, Ahmadinejad said, "They [Europeans] have invented a myth that Jews were massacred. . . . If you have burned the Jews, why don't you give a piece of Europe, the United States, Canada or Alaska to Israel. . . . [I]f you have committed this huge crime, why should the innocent nation of Palestine pay . . . ?" Only days ago, for good measure, before the Israeli-Hezbollah "ceasefire," Ahmadinejad said, "[T]he main solution is for the elimination of the Zionist regime."
Therefore, when the pugnacious Wallace sat down with Ahmadinejad, one expected the fit to hit the shan. But, no. For, as Wallace later said, he found Ahmadinejad an "impressive fellow," "attractive," "smart as hell," "savvy" and "rational." Wallace, the intrepid reporter, apparently smitten by what he perceived as Ahmadinejad's charm, poise and carriage, refused to call the president an anti-Semite!
Here's Wallace, after the Ahmadinejad interview, but before it aired, on Sean Hannity's radio show.
Hannity: "So you don't think he's an anti-Semite?"
Wallace: "He himself -- by anti-Semite, anti-Jew? Anti-Jew? . . . No, I don't."
What about Ahmadinejad's assertion that "if" the Holocaust took place, it took place in Europe, so why should Palestine suffer?