ZOA: State Department Wrong To Endorse Showing Iranian Pro-Terrorism Play In America
July 23, 2002

Yet Bush Said Iran is
Part of “Axis of Evil”

NEW YORK- The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has condemned the State Department’s decision to endorse the showing, in America, of an Iranian play glorifying “martyrdom.”

The play, “Ta’ziyeh of Hor,” was recently performed at Lincoln Center in New York City. It portrays a young Muslim boy, Hor, who becomes a child-warrior alongside Mohammed’s grandson, and it concludes with Hor having his throat slit. The official program notes say that “The play ends on a triumphant note celebrating Hor’s martyrdom.” The reviewer for the New York Sun (July 19-21,2002) remarked: ” ‘Ta’iyeh’ is glorifying martyrs who are also warriors, fighters redeemed by violence. It doesn’t take much imagination to see how plays like this one help shape the mindset in which it’s desirable to die while carrying out a sanctified act of violence. Taken to its repugnant extreme, such a worldview helps motivate the bombers of Netanya, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, and Lower Manhattan.”

The Sun reports that Lincoln Center Festival director Nigel Redden said “that Lincoln Center had consulted the State Department and received its blessing before bringing the production, although, he said, 10 of the play’s 28 Iranian actors were denied entry visas.”

The ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said: “The State Department’s support for this Iranian pro-terrorism play is in blatant defiance of President Bush’s own statements describing Iran as part of the ‘Axis of Evil’. The president should not permit the State Department to pursue its own foreign policy of trying to appease terrorist regimes while he is pledging to fight terrorist regimes. It is especially outrageous to being show an Iranian play that glorifies child-warriors at a time when Iranian-financed Palestinian Arab terrorists are sending Arab children to murder Israelis.”

Center for Law & Justice
We work to educate the American public and Congress about legal issues in order to advance the interests of Israel and the Jewish people.
We assist American victims of terrorism in vindicating their rights under the law, and seek to hold terrorists and sponsors of terrorism accountable for their actions.
We fight anti-Semitism and anti-Israel bias in the media and on college campuses.
We strive to enforce existing law and also to create new law in order to safeguard the rights of the Jewish people in the United States and Israel.