Iran hosted a conference calling into question the existence of the Holocaust, the systematic murder of six-million European Jews by Nazi, Germany during the Second World War. Millions of other innocent people, including Slavs, Gypsies, homosexuals, and political opponents of the Nazi regime were also starved, tortured, and worked to death in slave labor camps or shot or gassed at killing centers such as Auschwitz in Nazi-occupied Poland. The 1945 defeat of Nazi Germany by the U.S. and its allies finally put a stop to dictator Adolph Hitler's campaign of genocide.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been denying the Holocaust for more than a year, while at the same time calling for the destruction of Israel. Angela Merkel, Germany's Chancellor, says that denying the Holocaust is something today's Germans "absolutely reject." She says, "Germany will never accept this and will act against it with all the means that we have." Germany is one of twelve European countries that make Holocaust denial a crime.
State Department spokesman Sean McCormack says the Iran conference "is just awful":
“The conference that they have put together to try to undercut what is historical fact regarding the tragedy of the Holocaust in which millions of people lost their lives, then talking furthermore about trying to wipe off -- wipe a county off the face of the map, it's just absolutely astounding."
In a written statement, the White House says the U.S. condemns the conference on the Holocaust convoked by the Iranian regime. It says the gathering in Tehran "is an affront to the entire civilized world, as well as to the traditional Iranian values of tolerance and mutual respect." The White House says the U.S. "will continue to support those in Iran and elsewhere who seek to promote human rights and dignity, and will stand with them in their efforts to overcome oppression, injustice, and tyranny."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.