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With Holocaust book in Farsi, Iranian-American author plugs a historical hole
Dr. Ari Babaknia has written four volumes on the Holocaust in his native language, Farsi.
May 25th, 2012
04:07 PM ET

With Holocaust book in Farsi, Iranian-American author plugs a historical hole

By Kim Segal, CNN

(CNN) – When he first became interested in learning about the Holocaust in the 1990s, Dr. Ari Babaknia had trouble finding any literature on the subject written in his native tongue, Farsi.

The California-based physician wanted answers to basic questions: Where was the rest of the world as millions were exterminated? And when did the world learn what was happening?

“There’s plenty of books in English on this, and the Farsi-speaking people, I thought they’re not aware of this,” Babaknia says. “It’s something they should know about.”

So Babaknia, who came to the United States from Iran in 1974, decided to write the book himself, taking time off from his day job as a fertility specialist.

After 15 years of research, four volumes “Man’s Inhumanity to Man," “America’s Response to the Holocaust,” “The World’s Response to the Holocaust” and “End of the Holocaust and Liberation of the Nazi Camps and the Genocides of the Last 100 Years” are available for purchase online.

The volumes are self-published through a family foundation, but they're getting serious attention in the Jewish world. The Simon Wiesenthal Center and the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies in Washington are hosting book launch events for Babaknia.

As a Jew growing up in Iran, where Farsi is the official language, Babaknia and his classmates were taught little about the Holocaust. “We knew that 6 million people died,” Babaknia, 65, remembers. “Anything beyond that we really did not know. I knew only one name: Hitler.”

Knowledge of the Holocaust in Iran today is still limited. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is perhaps the international figure most closely associated with Holocaust denial.

Ahmadinejad is also one of Israel's most outspoken critics. Months after taking office in October 2005, he participated in a lengthy protest called "World Without Zionism,” and the Jewish state is deeply worried about his country's nuclear ambitions.

Deborah Lipstadt, professor for Holocaust studies at Emory University, says she welcomes the publication of Babaknia's books.

“I think a history book in Farsi could be very important,” says Lipstadt, who maintains Emory’s Holocaust Denier on Trial website.

“The problem is in Iran there are very few counter histories,” she says, "counter to the denial that Ahmadinejad puts out that a young person, a student, can go to and look up what do historians say as oppose to what politicians claim.”

More than 110 million people around the world speak the Persian language of Farsi.

Babaknia originally came to the United States to study medicine at John Hopkins University and had no ambition to write books. But he saw a need.

“I took it as a responsibility for myself,” he says. “You have to have resources, you have to have passion, you have to have knowledge in English and Farsi so it wasn’t an easy task, but it was a task that needed to be done.”

Unable to type in Farsi, Babaknia wrote his books out in longhand. He says the need for the collection was reaffirmed when a friend’s son from Iran came to visit him in the United States. The young physician saw Babaknia’s 400-plus research books in his library and asked, “Dr. B, what is Holocaust?

"Is it a medical term?" the visitor asked. "What is it? I haven’t heard of the word.”

Now, Babaknia has some books to give him written in his visitor's native tongue.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Books • Holocaust • Iran

soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. Kindness

    Kindness
    For you.
    A thought to consider without an ego response

    Accept Jesus christ as your lord and saviour. You never know how soon is too late. Transcend the worldly illusion of enslavement.
    The world denounces truth....

    Accepting Jesus Christ (for me) resulted in something like seeng a new colour. You will see it .....but will not be able to clearly explain it to anyone else..... Its meant to be that way to transend any selfism within you.

    Also... much the world arranges "surrounding dark matter into something to be debated" in such a way that protects/inflates the ego.

    The key is be present and transcend our own desire to physically see evidence. We don't know anyways by defending our own perception of dark matter.

    Currently.... most of us are constructing our own path that suits our sin lifestyle. Were all sinners. Knowing that we are is often an issue. But both christians and non are sinners.

    We don't like to Let go and let god. We want control to some degree. This is what Jesus asks us to do. "Follow me".
    It's the hardest thing to do... but is done by letting the truth of scripture lead you (redemptive revelation)... as I said .

    Try reading corinthians and see if it makes sense to you. Try it without a pre conceived notion of it being a fairy tale.
    See the truth...
    do we do what it says in todays society... is it relevant... so many have not recently read and only hinge their philosophy on what they have heard from som other person...which may have been full of arogance pride or vanity..

    Look closely at the economy ponzi, look at how society idolizes Lust , greed , envy, sloth, pride of life, desire for knowledge, desire for power, desire for revencge,gluttony with food etc .

    Trancsend the temporal world.

    Just think if you can find any truth you can take with you ....in any of these things. When you die your riches go to someone who will spend away your life..... You will be forgotten.... history will repeat iteslf.... the greatest minds knowledge fade or are eventually plagerzed..... your good deeds will be forgotten and only give you a fleeting temporary reward . your learned teachings are forgotten or mutated..... your gold is transfered back to the rullers that rule you through deception. Your grave will grow over . This is truth .

    Trancsend your egoism and free yourself from this dominion of satan. Understand you are a sinner and part of the collective problem of this worldly matrix... Repent.... Repent means knowing (to change) The Holy spirit (within) will convict you beyond what you think you can do by yourself. Grace is given to those who renounce the world. That are" in" the world but not "of " the world.

    Evidence follows faith. Faith does not follow evidence..... Faith above reason in Jesus Christ.

    Faith comes by Reading or Hearing the word of god from the bible . Ask Jesus in faith for dicernment and start reading the new testament... You will be shocked when you lay down your preconceived notions and ....see and hear truth ... see how christ sets an example ... feel the truth....

    Read Ecclesiastes. Read corinthians.

    You cant trancend your own egoism by adapting a world philosophy to suit your needs. Seek the truth in Christ.

    Sell all your cleverness and purchase true bewilderment. You don't get what you want ....you get what you are in christ.

    I promise this has been the truth for me. In Jesus christ .

    Think of what you really have to lose. ...your ego?

    Break the Matrix of illusion that holds your senses captive.

    once you do . you too will have the wisdom of God that comes only through the Holy Spirit. Saved By grace through Faith. Just like seeing a new colour.... can't explain it to a transient caught in the matrix of worldly deception.
    You will also see how the world suppresses this information and distorts it

    You're all smart people . I tell the truth. Its hard to think out of the box when earthly thinking is the box.
    I'ts a personal free experience you can do it free anytime . Don't wait till you are about to die.. START PUTTING YOUR TREASURES WHERE THEY REALLY MATTER >
    Its awsome and It's just between you and Jesus

    my testimony

    June 9, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
  2. Cyrus

    It is sad to read so much misinformation in these posts. A terrible injustice occurred to many minorities, including 6 millions mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, that happened to be Jewish. Human beings were tortured, and killed. Those are the undisputed facts.
    Furthermore, Dr. Babaknias, work should be commended, since apparently so many individuals lack a basic understanding of the holocaust.

    June 3, 2012 at 11:34 pm |
  3. Amhlair

    The holocaust industry comes to Iran.

    May 28, 2012 at 11:37 am |
  4. crazy jim

    point of fact most deaths in the holocaust were done by gassing.
    second point while it was true the Romans carried out the death of Jesus remember Pilate gave the Jewish mob a chance to have him set free.
    third point the Nazis were followers of a false doctrine of which it is closer to eastern beliefs than Christian doctrine (Hinduism) and many were occultist as well. Some white supremacy groups still follow it.
    The idea of antisemitism being German or Christian thing is wrong. The horrid false manuscript "Chronicles of the Elders of Zion" is more to blame for European actions and it was published in the early 1900's.

    May 28, 2012 at 3:36 am |
  5. ronjayaz

    One of the omissions in any Holocaust treatment is to recount the pre-history of the Holocaust beginning with the First Disapora of the Jews in 586 BC and the second after the destruction of the temple in 70 AD and the continued hate of the Jew in Christian literature throughout the centuries and especially the hate-mongering of Martin Luther, who was a dire example of the "Christ killer" theory and the continued Jew baiting before Hitler. Germany was the seed of the Holocaust long before Hitler, just as the present-day Arab world is the seed of Jew-hate today. Even in America as late as the 1950s anti-Semitism was rampant. And not until the 2nd Vatican Council October 11, 1962 (note the date!) were the Jews "finally exonerated of the crime of the killing of Christ." Unless all these facts and more are accompanied by the Holocaust presentation the world cud not know the real truth about a culture that gave us the sick idea SCHADENFREUDE, the enjoyment of seeing one suffering!

    May 27, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • B(iraq) Hussein Osama

      christians may have hated jews for centuries, but roasting them in ovens to the tune of MILLIONS?

      GODLESSNESS is the cause of the jewish holocaust, not christianity.
      Hitler was not particularly Catholic, nor were most of the people in the nazi party directly involved in the jewish extermination.
      Nor does Hitler blame the jews for the death of Jesus. Jesus was hardly someone Hitler thought much about.
      As compared to another fascist, Bush Jr. who openly admits his admiration for Jesus.

      everyone has prejudices and hates and racism, its the nature of human beings
      but when you lose God from your life. then these prejudices and racism can lead to ALARMING OUTCOMES.
      one of which is the Jewish Holocaust, Godlessness taken to its natural conclusions.

      May 27, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Thinker23

      Osama... Arabs are overwhelmingly religious. Nevertheless, they've managed to reduce the number of Jews in the Arab countries by 99%. The Nazis reduced the Jewish population of Europe "only" by 70%...

      May 27, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • Thinker23

      It is interesting that the Jew-haters blame the Jews for the death of Jesus even today despite the fact that according to the ONLY source of information about Jesus, the New Testament, He was arrested, tried, convicted and executed BY THE ROMANS... Not by Jews.

      May 27, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
    • B(iraq) Hussein Osama

      @Thinker23

      GODLESS NAZIS
      - reduced the population of jews by only 70%
      - by? roasting them in large custom-built ovens
      - murdering 6,000,000 of them in just five years

      GODLY ARABS
      - reduced the population of jews by only 99%
      - by? roasting? gassing? bombing?
      - nope, the jews left the Arab lands and moved elsewhere

      GODLY ARABS vs GODLESS NAZIS

      May 27, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • Thinker23

      Osama... The fact that 99% of the Jews left the Arab states tells volumes about the "great" life they had in their home countries. These people were extremely lucky that there was Israel and the US willing to accept them. The Jews of Europe had nowhere to go ten years earlier.

      May 27, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
    • Thinker23

      Osama... The Nazis were not Muslims but they were not "godless" either. Almost all of them were baptized, Christened and taught to love Jesus and pray to Him. They went to their churches, weared crosses, confessed to their priests and did everything else God loving Catholics are supposed to do. Granted, it was the Fuhrer who told them to kill the Jews. It was the Prophet himself who ordered the Muslims to do it.

      May 27, 2012 at 10:35 pm |
  6. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    May 27, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      May 29, 2012 at 11:12 am |
  7. Worship Poseidon

    Catering bar mitzvahs really made me sympathize with the Germans.

    May 27, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  8. Worship Poseidon

    I really love Jesus. In fact I want to penetrate his holiest of holes.

    May 27, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.