Leading organizer of Iranian Holocaust Cartoon Contest is a Partner of the German Federal Government

Jun 6th, 2016

cartoonHoloBerlin, June 5, 2016

On May 31, the award ceremony of the Iranian Holocaust cartoon competition took place, awarding antisemitic cartoons, which deny the Holocaust.

Majid Mollanoroozi, Director of the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art and Visual Arts Director at the Iranian “Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance” gave out the awards to the winners.

Just recently, the German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier chose Mollanoroozi to be a partner of a cultural project of the German government, as “Iran Appeasement Monitor” reported. In October 2015, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation and Mollanoroozi in the presence of Frank-Walter Steinmeier. The contract envisages that a collection of contemporary art will be displayed in Germany. [2]

Ulrike Becker, spokesperson of STOP THE BOMB campaign, strongly criticizes the cooperation of the Foreign Office with Mollanoroozi: “The agreement with someone who gives out awards for antisemitic cartoons points to the failure of the cultural dialogue of the German government with the Iranian regime. The idea that there are moderate or non-antisemitic forces in the Iranian leadership is a sham.

Dr. Kazem Moussavi, editor of “Iran Appeasement Monitor” and spokesperson for the Green Party of Iran in Germany, declares: “The exhibition is supposed to show works of art, which are banned in Iran. The fact that the Federal Government is collaborating with the Iranian regime is particularly insidious, as long as artists like many other critical voices in Iran are censored, arrested and tortured on a daily basis. “

The cartoon competition was organized by the Islamic Organization for Propaganda and was shown as part of “Iran’s Cartoon Biennale”, which is funded and organized by the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance.

Claims by Foreign Minister Zarif that the organizers were an independent NGO and had nothing to do with the government, are demonstrably false. [2]

[1] https://www.preussischer-kulturbesitz.de/fileadmin/user_upload/documents/presse/pressemitteilungen/2015/151021_Iran_ENG.pdf

[2] Compare https://www.ushmm.org/information/press/press-releases/museum-demands-iranian-government-disavow-holocaust-cartoon-contest andhttps://www.ushmm.org/m/pdfs/PoliticalAnalysisEnglishFINAL.pdf

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  1. During a recent visit to Tehran with my family I visited the Holocaust Cartoon Contest exhibit. While a couple of the cartoons were “on point” in the sense that some of the more blatant Israeli excesses were dealt with in what most reasonable people in the West would consider acceptable if sophomoric ways, most represented gross exaggerations (cartoonish?) assaults on a set of circumstances and situations which are at best ambiguous and subject to serious, reasoned debate and disagreement. Quite a number of the cartoons were vilely antisemitic, depicting characters one sees in museum copies of “Der Sturmer” and the like. At least one depicted the “Blood Libel” from “Protocols Of The Elders Of Zion”. The worst examples of the cartoons came from Eastern & Central Europe, and certain Latin American countries.

    I asked one of the attendants if they were planning a Bashar al-Assad cartoon exhibit, but I’m afraid the message was lost on the fellow.

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