Academics Finland Iran

The Best Source For The Ahmadinejad Quote…….

To wipe Israel off the map“. To all those “die hard” apologists for Iran’s loony leader, including University of Michigan professor, Juan Cole, please read the caption to a picture taken from Iran’s own news service IRIB.

I am reminded of an exchange of words last year with Jussi Sinnemaa –a Finnish foreign policy analyst– for an article he wrote that appeared in a Finnish website for SUOMEN RAUHANPUOLUSTAJAT (Finnish Defenders of Peace), in which he tried to down play the serious of the Iranian leader’s words, “to wipe Israel off the map”.

KGS: “One wonders how he can twist words so, that no longer mean what the Iranian leader said. Its a mater of public record that Ahmadinejad was quoting the late Ayatollah Komanei’s words of the need to get rid of Israel.”

Sinnemaa: In my article I point out that Ahmadinejad was indeed quoting Khomeini, but You and I disagree on the exact translation. I am supported by several eminent Persian scholars (and I mean scholars of the Persian language, rather than Iranian scholars) including professor Juan Cole – who can hardly be described as anti-Israeli – in saying that “wiping Israel off the map” is certainly a mistranslation; the call is for “the Zionist regime (or more appropriate the regime occupying al-Qods) to be removed from the pages of time”.

While You will certainly interpret this differently, many people regard this statement as a wish for the regime to disappear, rather than Iran actively destroying the regime (which it cannot realistically do anyway). I have yet to see an Iranian leader saying outright that Iran will do the destroying.

An elongated YAWN……..

Jussi Sinnemaa is on record stating that he denies that he is down playing Ahmadinejad’s highly genocidal statements, when actually he is. Though –most likely– he does not support Ahmadinejad’s views, (if he even actually understands them) he helps this dangerous man by disseminating false information, creating an ulterior scenario to the situation that actually exists.

Only the fringe on the far Left, (hopefully it’s still just the fringe) cling to that fanciful notion that Ahmadinejad meant only “regime change”. After having read many of Jussi Sinnemaa’s highly charged anti-American and anti-Israel screeds, I can safely include him as being a “far Lefty” as well. In other words, beyond any point of hope or reasoning *L* KGS

10 Responses

  1. In the old days Rauhanpuolustajat was basically a cover organization for the extreme left. During the Cold War they criticized NATO arms buildup, but often neglected to mention Soviet weapons.


    Also :

    But translators in Tehran who work for the president’s office and the foreign ministry disagree with them. All official translations of Mr. Ahmadinejad’s statement, including a description of it on his Web site (, refer to wiping Israel away. Sohrab Mahdavi, one of Iran’s most prominent translators, and Siamak Namazi, managing director of a Tehran consulting firm, who is bilingual, both say “wipe off” or “wipe away” is more accurate than “vanish” because the Persian verb is active and transitive.

    The second translation issue concerns the word “map.” Khomeini’s words were abstract: “Sahneh roozgar.” Sahneh means scene or stage, and roozgar means time. The phrase was widely interpreted as “map,” and for years, no one objected. In October, when Mr. Ahmadinejad quoted Khomeini, he actually misquoted him, saying not “Sahneh roozgar” but “Safheh roozgar,” meaning pages of time or history. No one noticed the change, and news agencies used the word “map” again.

  3. Apologists always have some excuse.. same goes with interpreting the Koran and what it says. Always boils down to “it was mis-translated”..

  4. If this is a “fringe on the far Left”, why do you even bother discussing it? Indeed, who cares what some guy writes in a fringe magazine? Jeez man, you keep raving on about this years later – don’t you think you’re giving Mr. Sinnemaa’s opinions a little bit to much attention here? Also, how would you describe yourself then? Far right?

  5. This guy is a foreign policy analyst, therefore a person of some degree of influence. That’s why he is periodically mentioned now and then when the issue warrants it.

    I beg to differ about the rate of attention I draw to him, a handfull of posts (if even that) out of 1500 or more… do the math.

    I lean center right, and have been known to defend liberals and liberal issues when the seem reasonable.

  6. Ok, I simply meant that his influence probably is less than marginal, even on that far fringe. He fails to provoke me, as there is nothing I haven’t already heard, from far more eminent writers, in his opinions and arguments.

    Surely you must be one of the few persons to actually comment on his articles. Of course, you do as you please. Personally, I don’t shed any tears regardless what the fringe elements (right or left) think. That’s a luxury I cannot afford.

    As for your political orientation, does “center right” and “liberal issues” refer to the political spectrum of Finland or eg. the US? The difference, as I’m sure you know, is enormous.

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