Iranian news site pins Newtown shooting on ‘Israeli death squad’

American Press TV panelist charges that ‘Zionist-controlled Hollywood, news media’ cultivate American culture of violence

Ilan Ben Zion, a reporter at the Associated Press, is a former news editor at The Times of Israel.

Michael Harris speaks on Iranian Press TV. (photo credit: image capture from YouTube video uploaded by Press TV)
Michael Harris speaks on Iranian Press TV. (photo credit: image capture from YouTube video uploaded by Press TV)

The horrific massacre at a Connecticut elementary school last week was a “revenge killing in the United States sponsored by Israel” in response to international support for the Palestinians at the United Nations last month, an American journalist told Iranian Press TV on Tuesday.

Michael Harris, the financial editor at Veterans Today, a website littered with anti-Semitic and anti-Israel conspiracy theories, charged in an internationally broadcast interview on the Iranian station that “Israel has been operating death squads.” Harris, a former Republican gubernatorial candidate in Arizona, used the interview as a soapbox for an anti-Semitic rant against Israel and American Jews.

His statements were then featured as the headline of the video published on YouTube and on the news site’s homepage.

He claimed that Israeli revenge squads have been killing Americans since the January 2011 shooting in Tucson, Arizona, that critically injured Jewish congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 11 others and killed six. Harris also charged that Israel was behind the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting earlier this year in which 12 people were killed and 58 others were injured.

“Zionist-controlled Hollywood” and the “Zionist-controlled news media” act as a “conduit to all this violence” in the United States that manifests itself in deadly shootings, according to Harris.

He further claimed that the July 2011 massacre in Norway, in which Anders Behring Breivik murdered 69 people, was Israeli retaliation for Norway expressing support for the Palestinians the week before.

“Let’s connect the dots here,” he said.

Nonetheless, he explained, official investigations of last week’s Connecticut shooting in which 20 children and six adults were killed would not yield evidence of the Israeli connection.

“Israel wants it hidden because they’re once again the guilty party” and because the “Zionist-occupied” American government would enable a cover-up, he said.

When another panelist interviewed on Press TV attempted to dismiss Harris’s outrageous statements, describing his tying of Israel to the Newtown shooting as “grossly irresponsible” and “disgusting,” the moderator silenced him and moved on to the third panelist.

Harris also charged, incongruously, that while Hollywood Jews cultivated the American culture of violence, Jewish politicians were the ones trying to strip law-abiding citizens of their guns, citing California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein as an example.

“They’ve been trying to destroy this country and destroy this constitution for 70 years,” he charged.

“I want Israel off the face of the Earth; they’re the source of all the problems in the Middle East,” Harris said in his coup de grace of anti-Jewish rage.

Harris’s publication, Veterans Today, describes itself as “the true voice of the world’s clandestine community” and writes that it “stands for justice, equality, truth, and the USA and does NOT stand for racism including but NOT limited to racism by color, ethnicity, cultural identity, sexual identity, or creed.”

The site counts Gush Shalom founder Uri Avnery and rabid anti-Israel activist Gilad Atzmon as writers.

The Anti-Defamation League responded to Harris’s statements saying “Veterans Today is known for promulgating some of the most outrageous anti-Israel and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, and Press TV has been providing a platform for its contributors and other American anti-Semites, conspiracy theorists and Holocaust deniers for years.”

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