April 1, 2020

Elan Carr: Iran Is the ‘World’s Chief Trafficker in Anti-Semitism’

Elan Carr, newly appointed special envoy for monitoring and combating anti-Semitism in Poland. Credit: Erin Ben-Moche

During the Jan. 8 U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom’s (USCIRF) Global Efforts to Combat Anti-Semitism hearing, United States Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Elan Carr called Iran a leading exporter of anti-Semitism worldwide.

USCIRF Commissioner Gary Bauer pointed out during the hearing that Iran uses government resources to get its citizens to chant, “Death to Jews” and “Death to Israel.” He added that “anti-Semitism seems to be one of the core reasons [the Iranian regime] exists.”

Carr replied, “Iran is not only the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, it is the world’s chief trafficker in anti-Semitism. The Islamic Republic of Iran has pushed anti-Semitic dogma throughout the Middle East and throughout the Muslim world beyond the Middle East.”

He pointed to radical Islamists perpetuating anti-Semitic violence throughout Europe as an example of Iran’s anti-Semitic propaganda metastasizing outside the Middle East.

“What happens in the Middle East directly affects the European street and in many cases, the U.S. college campus,” Carr said.

Carr called on world leaders to confront the Iranian regime on its anti-Semitism, and specifically urged European government to designate Hezbollah as a terror group.

“If you’re not willing to designate Hezbollah a terrorist organization, then protecting Jews seems to be a goal that is not being achieved,” Carr said.

Carr also said during the hearing that the internet has been utilized as a key purveyor of anti-Semitic rhetoric, citing various online chat rooms.

“Those of us who are parents would never dream of allowing our kids to wander unescorted, or even escorted, in neighborhoods of crime and drugs and violence and danger,” Carr said. “Yet everyday, kids are being sucked into this venomous vortex of internet chat rooms and sites that spout hatred … and they feed off of this for years and then they become radicalized and turn toward violence.”

He urged internet platforms to enforce their terms of service as a means to expunge anti-Semitic rhetoric.

“Anti-Semitic speech very often violates the terms of use of these sites and platforms, so we should be encouraging … these platforms to enforce these terms of use,” Carr said.

Others who testified during the hearing included Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action Agenda at the Simon Wiesenthal Center Rabbi Abraham Cooper and Anti-Defamation League Senior Vice President of International Affairs Sharon Nazarian.

The full hearing can be seen below: