Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif responded to a statement made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his recent visit to Russia. Netanyahu said the Persians tried to annihilate all the Jews some 2,500 years ago, as recorded by the Book of Esther. Zarif retorted with a Twitter message on Sunday evening, saying, “To sell bigoted lies against a nation which has saved Jews 3 times, Netanyahu resorting to fake history & falsifying Torah. Force of habit.”
In an attachment to the post, Zarif wrote: “Once again Benjamin Netanyahu not only distorts the realities of today, but also of the past — including Jewish scripture. It is truly regrettable that bigotry gets to the point of making allegations against an entire nation which has saved the Jews three times in its history.
“The Book of Esther tells of how Xerxes I saved Jews from a plot hatched by Haman the Agagite, which is marked on this very day; again, during the time of Cyrus the Great, an Iranian king saved the Jews — this time from captivity in Babylon; and during the Second World War, when Jews were being slaughtered in Europe, Iran gladly took them in,” the Iranian foreign minister stated.
To be fair to the Israeli PM, the Persian king in the Megillah is in cahoots with Haman’s plot to destroy all the Jews in his empire, and the reversal of his position is the essence of the Purim miracle. In the end, though, Zarif is correct in suggesting that the king did save the Jews from a terrifying fate he himself helped concoct.
Zarif, However, ignored the current declarations and efforts by his own government to annihilate millions of Jews.