Iran seeks to unleash “another Holocaust” against the Jewish people by erasing Israel from the map, Vice President Mike Pence warned on Thursday.
“From the dark years of Nazi occupation, the people of Poland know all too well that anti-Semitism is not just wrong; it’s evil,” Pence said at a conference for European and Middle Eastern leaders in Warsaw. “And anti-Semitism must be confronted, wherever and whenever it arises, and it must be universally condemned.”
“But beyond its hateful rhetoric, the Iranian regime openly advocates another Holocaust and it seeks the means to achieve it,” Pence added.
Iran is attempting to “recreate the ancient Persian Empire” by carving out a “corridor of influence running through Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon,” which would give it direct access to Israel, the vice president said.
Six million Jewish people are believed to have been killed by Nazi Germany during World War II, including over 1 million at the infamous Auschwitz death camp in Poland, which Pence plans to visit Friday.
The current population of Israel is approximately 9 million, about 6.6 million of whom are Jewish.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters before Pence’s speech that “confronting Iran” is a necessary step to achieving “peace and stability in the Middle East,” the Daily Mail reported.
“The three H’s — the Houthis, Hamas and Hezbollah — these are real threats … you can’t get peace in the Middle East without pushing back against Iran,” Pompeo said, referring to Iran’s proxies in Yemen, in Lebanon and in Syria and Iraq.
The conference in Poland was held during the same week that Iran celebrated the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the Islamic Republic.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who also attended the event, met with Pence later in the day at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, where they commemorated the Warsaw Uprising against Nazi Germany.
“But let me also say it’s very humbling for me to be here with you in this very special place on this sacred ground, to hear a prayer sung, to remember the heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto,” Pence told Netanyahu.
“To be able to share this moment with you and with members of the Jewish community here in Poland is deeply meaningful, and it reminds us of the strength of the bond between our two people that is unbreakable,” he added.
Vice President Mike Pence in bilateral meeting with PM Netanyahu: “Israel is our cherished ally.”
— The Hill (@thehill) February 14, 2019
Netanyahu thanked the vice president and agreed Warsaw is a place of special meaning to the Jews.
“I think it’s significant in that, in this hour of despair, right here on this ground, the young Jewish heroes, with literally their last ounce of strength, withstood against thousands of Nazi troops,” Netanyahu said. “They said, ‘If we must die, let us die as free men and women, and let us save the honor of the Jewish people.’”
“Little did they know that they were actually, in many ways, symbolizing the rebirth of the Jewish people, the rebirth of the Jewish state, which was soon to come, and the rebirth of the Jewish army that protects now the Jewish future,” he further stated.
Their meeting also occurred in the same week as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and fellow Democratic leaders in Congress rebuked their colleague Rep. Ilhan Omar for sharing anti-Semitic statements on social media.
In a tweet on Sunday, Omar indicated that the reason Israel enjoys such support in Congress is because lawmakers are being paid off by Jewish interests.
In a subsequent tweet, the Minnesota Democrat identified the American Israel Public Affairs Committee as the source of the funds going to members of Congress.
The Hill reported Omar came under fire last month when a 2012 tweet resurfaced in which she called for Allah to awaken people about the “evil doings of Israel.”
She tweeted: “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel. #Gaza #Palestine #Israel,” she tweeted.
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