Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP) Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei offered high praise to a man who called the Holocaust a myth and questioned whether the Nazis used gas chambers to attempt genocide.

By United With Israel Staff 

In 1998, Roger Garaudy was convicted and fined for Holocaust denial under French law for claiming that the death of six million Jews was a “myth.”

Monday was apparently the 21st anniversary of a French court’s sentencing of the late Garaudy to a suspended prison term and a fine of about $18,000.

To mark the occasion, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei wrote on his Twitter account: “Bravery and tirelessness of Roger #Garaudy in the work he initiated is praiseworthy. The fight he engaged in against the Zionists is a #DivineDuty for all those who respect the #Truth.”

The Iranian supreme leader also criticizes the court’s sentencing, tweeting that “In his book, the French philosopher expressed doubts about the number of #Holocaust victims. The French govt not only banned his book, but also brought Garaudy to trial. These are the claimants of advocating #FreedomOfSpeech.”

Khamenei also used his social media thread on Monday to applaud Garaudy for his “accurate and precise prediction about the U.S. regime, which we confirm, too. We also believe that the U.S. is declining. A power built on the basis of coercion, interference in other countries’ affairs and domination over other nations won’t persist.”

“Garaudy, a communist who converted to Islam, claimed in his 1996 book, The Founding Myths of Israeli Politics, that the Holocaust was an exaggeration, and that the Nazis’ killings of Jews could not be described as genocide,” writes CNS News, a politically conservative American news and commentary website.

“He described the killing of six million Jews as a myth, and called into question the Nazis’ use of gas chambers for mass extermination,” says the website.

“The writer, then in his 80s, was convicted under French law in early 1998. He appealed the judgment, but it was upheld by an appeal court in Paris on December 16 of that year,” says CNS News.

Among others who have sung his praise have been Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah, and senior Assad regime and Palestinian officials, says the conservative news outlet.

Just before his French imprisonment, Garaudy was invited to visit Iran, it adds.

“Received with honors usually reserved for heads of state, he met with Khamenei during that April 1998 visit,” reports CNS News.”

“The supreme leader told him that ‘the Zionists and the Nazis have a lot in common,'” according to the report.

Garaudy died in 2012 at the age of 98. But apparently, the anniversary of his imprisonment for Holocaust denial is still important enough for Iran’s spiritual leader to honor him.

It’s not surprising for the Iranian regime, has held three Holocaust-themed cartoon contests since 2006.

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