Holocaust TV Serial In Iran Captivates Nation

A love story set against the background of the Holocaust has become one of the most popular programs being shown on Iran’s flagship national channel. The 30 episode drama, Zero Degree Turn, depicts a half Iranian, half Palestinian boy who falls in love with a French girl in prewar France. The boy, Habib Paisa, falls in love with a Jewish French girl named Sarah Stuck and they become caught up in World War II events. Habib works at the Iranian embassy in Paris and uses his position to help safe Sarah and her family. The screenwriter was doing research about Iranian diplomats in the World War II era and stumbled upon countless stories of Iranians helping save thousands of Jews from death in the Holocaust. Iran’s president, Ahmadinejad has repeatedly claimed the Holocaust never happened, but, as the Arab Times notes, “Ahmadinejad’s stance on the Holocaust has rarely been repeated by top Iranian officials, and, on occasion, even flatly contradicted.” Over 24,000 Jews still live in Iran, have a Jewish MP in parliament and are guaranteed freedom of religion.

It is interesting that Zero Degree Turn is not discussed by the American media which is quick to seize upon every idiotic statement made by President Ahmadinejad. Few Americans are aware that Iranians saved Jews during the Holocaust. Perhaps, demonstrators who yelled and screamed against Iran during Ahmadinejad’s appearance at Columbia University have something to add concerning this TV series and the performance of Iranian diplomats during the Holocaust.

  • http://andrewsxtheworld.blogspot.com/ Andrew

    I agree with you completely. The media is a part of the US-Israel Lobbying Group, which is a powerful force in US politics. I do believe that Ahmadinejad is saying these things just to stand up to America in the Iranians’ eyes and to boost his own polit. reputation.

  • http://daledamos.blogspot.com Daled Amos

    Actually, the movie is nothing like the description you got from the Arab paper. There are 2 excerpts of the series translated by MEMRI and available on YouTube, here and here

    Also, check out Hot Air:

    Reader Niko K. writes below that a Spiegel story on the miniseries sharply contradicts the AP’s account. So sharply, in fact, that I’m wondering now if the AP story is a deliberate whitewash. Writes Niko:

    The article has it all wrong, and also the Wall Street Journal article that appeared earlier.

    Mohammed Reza Kazemi cleared up the matter in a recent SPIEGEL article (link in German only, sorry). Main points:

    * the major point of the series is that it was allegedly the German Jews themselves who collaborated with Hitler to kill those Jews who opposed the re-settlement of Palestine

    * for example, a plot line shows that a Jewish researcher is in possession of documents that prove the connection between Hitler and Zionists

    * the credits of each episode feature the work of anti-Semite Roger Garaudy as a “historical source”

    * “historical adviser” to the series is Holocaust denier Abdollah Shahbazi who openly admits in his blog that he’s a denier

    * director and screenwriter Hassan Fatthi alleged to SPIEGEL that according to “historical evidence” a majority of Hitler’s victims were those who opposed the re-settlement of Palestine