By Ivan Kesic
These days, the news about US tech mogul Elon Musk exposing the smear campaign that the New York-headquartered Zionist lobby group Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has launched against his social media network X (formerly Twitter) is grabbing headlines worldwide.
It is worth noting that the Islamic Republic of Iran and its international media network Press TV have for years been the chief victims of the Tel Aviv-funded group’s malicious activities.
The ADL is an extremist Zionist lobbying and pressure group based in the United States, which operates under the guise of fighting anti-Jewish hatred. It has an annual budget of around $100 million and works closely with other Zionist groups based in Western countries.
The group is known for vigorously lobbying for the Israeli regime, justifying the Israeli policy of expansion into Jerusalem al-Quds and the West Bank, opposing the return of ethnically cleansed Palestinian refugees, and supporting US military interventionism in West Asia.
The activities of the ADL are aimed at critics of Zionism and the Israeli regime, most often with methods to equate criticism with Nazism and terrorism.
In most cases, they use available funds and influence to run smear campaigns and lawsuits.
Since 1979, when the pro-American dictatorship was overthrown and the Islamic Republic was established through a popular referendum, the ADL has remained one of the fiercest promoters of Iranophobia, defaming Iranian individuals, society, culture and political system.
In April this year, the ADL office in Washington hosted Reza Pahlavi, the son of the deposed Iranian dictator who lives freely in the United States and mingles with various notorious anti-Iran lobbies.
The ADL described him as a “respectable politician” and hailed his visit to the occupied Palestinian territories, and uncritically broadcasted his speech in which he affronted leading figures of the Islamic Revolution and called for the overthrow of the Islamic Republic.
Iran is falsely accused of "sponsoring terrorism" by the ADL, which labels all Palestinian resistance groups with the same defamatory term, as well as Yemen's Ansarallah resistance movement.
On the other hand, Zionist terrorist groups like the Irgun, Lehi, and Haganah, on which today's Israeli armed forces are based, are glorified in the ADL reports as freedom fighters.
Yellow badges hoax
One of the most notorious examples of the ADL's spread of Iranophobic hatred was its participation in a smear campaign in 2006 when it promoted the hoax that Iran was introducing yellow badges for Jewish citizens.
This hoax was spread by the exiled monarchist and fraudster Amir Taheri, at a time of most active Zionist and Neocon warmongering against Iran, and its purpose was to equate Iran with Nazi Germany.
Other Zionist organizations such as the Simon Wiesenthal Center, American Jewish Congress, B'nai B'rith and the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism also participated in this smear campaign against the Islamic Republic.
The ADL did describe the hoax as "unconfirmed" in its article, but threw in a series of typical smears about alleged Iranian anti-Semitism, creating the impression that the rumor was entirely real and thus indirectly accusing Iran.
After the yellow badge allegations were debunked, the ADL did not distance itself from the article nor did it criticize its sister organizations for slandering Iran.
The ADL director at the time, Abraham Foxman, publicly claimed that Iran is “worse than Nazi Germany," advocated draconian sanctions against Iran and opposed any possibility of US-Iranian negotiations.
Campaign against Press TV
The ADL has also been one of the main proponents of a long-running smear campaign against Press TV, Iran’s leading international news network, lobbying along with other Zionist organizations to censor the network on global satellite channels and social media.
Press TV's flagship weekly show, Palestine Declassified, has been the main target of this pro-Israel lobby group in recent years, as the show has successfully exposed Israeli apartheid practices.
In April, the ADL and the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCHD) demanded that Press TV be blocked for publishing content in Britain, with ADL boss Jonathan Greenblatt terming it “inexcusable”.
“We urge Meta [the owner of Facebook] and Twitter to immediately launch an investigation and to take action to prevent Press TV and the Iranian other media outlets from misusing these social platforms.”
The report said the Palestine Declassified show, hosted by former Labour MP Chris Williamson and Professor David Miller, uses social media to spread antisemitic tropes, especially against British Jews.
Two months before that, Williamson was stripped of his parliamentary pass by a committee of lawmakers in what he described as “confected controversy."
Speaking to the Press TV website at the time, Williamson said he “wasn’t surprised” by the arbitrary decision, noting that the political class in the UK has been “gripped by a kind of hypocritical hysteria”.
Williamson noted that the Zionist lobby and acolytes of the NATO military alliance in the British parliament exert an “entirely disproportionate influence”.
“The British political class only represent the interests of powerful lobbies, rather than the wellbeing of the communities they are elected to serve, and on whose votes they rely for their privileged positions."
ADL' coronavirus rhetoric
The "Executive Summary" section of an ADL report on Press TV this year contained a whole set of manipulations, mostly with the classic slander that the defense of Palestinian rights amounts to "spreading anti-Jewish hatred," but also other extremely misleading points.
Also included was the claim that Press TV propagated "Jewish responsibility for the coronavirus pandemic", which is a blatant lie and not backed by evidence.
ADL did not provide evidence with Press TV links but referred to the Israeli media in which it was claimed that "Iran is losing the battle with the coronavirus and is therefore desperately looking for foreign culprits."
That article with attempts to denigrate and ridicule Iran with lies was published in early March 2020, at the time of the outbreak of the pandemic, when Iran was the most affected country and when the coronavirus had not yet knocked on the doors of Western countries.
An inhumane campaign of portraying Iran as incompetent and paranoid failed miserably, because in the end, although sanctioned and with fewer resources, it proved to be more successful in fighting the pandemic with fewer deaths than the US and major European countries.
Press TV as 'KKK outlet'?
Another slander in the ADL report was summed up in the point that Press TV is doing "Antisemitic interviews with Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke", thus trying to portray the Iranian media network as a mouthpiece of racism and white supremacism.
It is difficult to enumerate all the manipulative methods summarized in so little text, including double anachronism, selective evidence, eternal guilt, guilt by association, taking it out of context, twisting of facts, double standards, and so on.
Duke did appear as a guest on Press TV, but only once and that was 11 years ago. He has also made numerous guest appearances on CNN, MSNBC and other Western media, which the ADL does not slander.
In giving statements to all these media, Duke has always distanced himself from racism and anti-Jewish hatred, insisting that his KKK membership dates back to the late 1970s and that it is, therefore, unfair that he is still portrayed as such today.
The public condemnation of racism and anti-Semitism by the former KKK leader certainly had more impact on the anti-racist struggle than all the ADL pamphlets combined, but due to his anti-Zionist views, the ADL and the mass media present him as an "enduring racist".
Press TV itself has a clear policy against all forms of racism and regularly reports on such incidents around the world, including Zionist hate directed against Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims.
In Duke's conversation with Press TV, the topic was not his KKK past or anything related to racism, but the influence of the Zionist lobby on American mainstream politics.
The fact that the Zionists are responsible for the war in Iraq, which Duke mentioned to Press TV, is an ostensibly "anti-Semitic claim" for the ADL, although even Western academic publications make it clear that the leading warmongers were from the Zionist and Neoconservative milieu.
ADL's attempts to censor Press TV
In its report, the ADL elaborates in detail the activities of Press TV on social media, mostly Facebook and Twitter, and finally gives recommendations on how the largest social networks should censor and sanction Press TV and its Palestine-related programs.
The ADL report also praises its sister Zionist organization, the Community Security Trust (CST), for successfully lobbying YouTube to shut down Press TV's social media channels.
In April this year, at the same time that the ADL publicly announced that along with dozens of other related organizations, it was campaigning against Twitter, ADL chief executive Jonathan Greenblatt called on Facebook and Twitter to eliminate Press TV.
The censorship campaign is also aimed at other most visited websites. The ADL praises Google Search for removing Press TV from their video hosting service but complains that at the same time, Press TV is surfacing highly in search results.
Another example is the English Wikipedia, where Press TV and Hispan TV are blocked as "unreliable sources," and even the posting of their links is automatically blocked.
This decision was made on the basis of the ADL reports, and the voters for censorship of Iranian media were users active on Jewish and Israeli topics, along with the most active pro-MKO users.
Ironically, the ADL openly flaunts this massive coordinated campaign of censorship, while calling Iran's criticism of it "conspiracy theories."
However, as evidence suggests, the massive smear campaign against Iran and Press TV has been in vain, with no desired output. Iran continues to back the Palestinian nation and all oppressed of the world and Press TV continues to be the voice of the voiceless.
(The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Press TV)