A theme park has been opened in Iran where young children can dress up in full combat gear, hold fake AK-47 rifles and take part in mock fights against the Islamic Republic’s sworn enemies — including Israel.
At the City of Games for Revolutionary Children, located in Mashad, kids as young as 8 are taken through various stations aimed at teaching them about Iranian military history, and psyching them up for any battles that the Shiite country might face.
In one station, the children are encouraged to throw balls at effigies of Islamic State fighters. In another, they can fire plastic bullets at a depiction of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, according to the Iranian official in charge.
“The children follow various paths simulating fighting the enemy, and at some places, the children learn about simple [combat] methods such as firing plastic artillery shells at a simulated enemy as well as aiming and firing a rifle with plastic bullets at [an effigy] of Netanyahu and at US and Israeli flags,” said Cultural Center director Hamid Sadeghi, in an interview translated by watchdog group MEMRI last week.
“[Afterwards,] the children are blindfolded and asked to throw a ball at an Israeli flag in the form of a puzzle and knock it down, and then to assemble a puzzle of an Iranian flag.” In this station, “the children learn that the most important element[s] for attaining victory are wisdom and intelligence for fighting the enemy,” Sadeghi added.
The children can also take part in activities such as scaling walls and crawling under barbed wire, all while staff members from the park shout orders, and the sound of recorded machine gun fire plays in the background.
The theme park reopened recently, after a first opening last year.
“So far, this City of Games has been in great demand…,” Sadeghi told the Iranian Raja News agency.