The Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre has been blamed on issues ranging from lax gun control to mental illness. Now, Iran’s English television outlet, Press TV, is spreading a new conspiracy theory, blaming the shooting not on a troubled Adam Lanza but on what one commentator called “Israeli death squads.”
An American contributor to Press TV, Michael Harris, a former Republican Arizona gubernatorial candidate, made the outrageous claim that Israel launched a so-called U.S.-based “death squad” to carry out the murders. He claims Israel targeted the U.S., because Palestinians won their bid at the U.N. last month to upgrade their status to that of non-member state. Harris doesn’t bother mentioning that the U.S. sided with Israel and opposed the Palestinian bid. Evoking Lee Harvey Oswald and conspiracies around President Kennedy’s assassination, Harris said Lanza was just the “fall guy.”
The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) transcribed excerpts of his televised comments, including the fabricated Israel-sponsored “revenge killing” smear:
Now you look at Israel, [which has] just lost their bid to thwart Palestine from being recognized by the United Nations, and now here we go, here is a revenge killing in the U.S., sponsored by Israel, that killed all these innocent children – and that is something that Israelis do very, very well. They target the innocent, they target children, they target women, and they avoid the issue, because they are angry they did not get their way, and now Palestine has standing in the U.N., and Israel is going to be subject to the International Criminal Court, and their leadership is going to be taken to task. […]
You have to realize that Israel has been operating death squads in the U.S., since Gabby Giffords and Judge Roll were shot in Tucson. There have been other incidents, such as the Aurora, Colorado shooting, that was again Israeli death squads operating in the U.S.
Harris either doesn’t know or chooses not to note that that former Arizona Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords – critically injured in the 2011 Tuscon shooting — is herself Jewish.
He continued his remarks by doling out stereotypical anti-Semitic slander including the Jews control Hollywood. It appears the man Press TV calls an “intelligence analyst” doesn’t realize that by blaming Hollywood’s negative influence on youths like Lanza, he’s undercutting his “death squads” accusation:
We have had a Zionist-controlled Hollywood, a Zionist-controlled news media that is the conduit to all of this violence. [It brings] this imagery into every home in America, and you still wonder why there is a culture of violence? It is because it comes from the Jews in Hollywood. That is where the conduit of violence comes from.
And if it weren’t enough to blame Israel for the actions of a deranged individual, Harris then says the “Israel lobby” will “cover up” the “truth” behind who was involved.
Now, they are also calling for a Congressional hearing. One thing you can count on with a Congressional hearing is that there is going to be a cover up, because all of our Congressmen are bought and paid for by the Israel lobby in the U.S. So any truth of this is going to be hidden, because Israel wants it hidden, because they are once again the guilty party.
Harris reveals his true colors — in lockstep with the genocidal statements of his Iranian employers and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – that he wants Israel wiped off the map. Does this language sound familiar?
I am very much anti-Israel. I want Israel off the face of the earth. They are the source of all problems in the Middle East. They are the original terrorists. Do not forget that this killing in Newtown was a revenge killing because Israel lost the vote about Palestine being recognized in the U.N. That is all it is about, it happens every time. It is Israelis acting out, throwing a fit, and exacting revenge from the United States.
That is exactly what it is and I am tired of the kid-gloves with Israel, it is time to go bare knuckles with them. Let’s go.
Press TV took the conspiracy one step further. Reminiscent of conspiracy theories raging in the Muslim world after 9/11, Press TV suggests on its website that there was something sinister behind Sandy Hook’s secretary calling in sick on the fateful day. It writes:
Joanne Didonato, the principal’s secretary, called in sick on Friday – something she rarely does. So presumably, she must have been awfully ill. Yet she then felt well enough to give an interview. “Of all days,” she said, emphasizing the strange coincidence.
Hispasat, the Spanish communications satellite company, last week decided to drop two Iranian channels including Press TV and Hispan TV.
American Jewish Committee Executive Director David Harris was quoted by JNS saying: “No satellite company in the Western world should enable the dissemination of propaganda from an Iranian government that denies human rights, supports terror organizations and is determined to achieve nuclear weapons capability.”
Mohammed Sarafraaz, a senior official with Iranian state broadcaster IRIB told Iran’s Mehr News: “Their attempt to silence Iranian media is misguided. Their approach to Iranian media reminds us of the law of the jungle and inquisition in medieval times when knowledge was crime.”
He also took the opportunity to blame Israel:
“The coincidence of sanction against Iranian media and hundreds of millions of dollars of support to help Israeli missile arsenal by Congress indicates that in the view of US officials, these two actions are equal,” he explained. “The ban on Press TV is an outcome of pressures by Zionist lobbyists on Congress after Israel’s defeat in 8-day war of Gaza and Hamas missile-launching to the heart of Israel,” he added.
Other European satellite companies in France and Britain dropped Iranian state television channels in October after EU foreign ministers agreed on new sanctions in an effort to pressure Iran over its clandestine nuclear program.
Watch the clips MEMRI excerpted from Press TV here: