Elham Kadkhodaee an Assistant Professor in the Department of West Asian & North African Studies at the Faculty of World Studies, University of Tehran, spoke at the 16th Resistance International Film Festival over the concept of Zionism and its true nature.
“The problem with Zionism is that it has a kind of exclusionary nature so, the fact that whoever is with us is good and whoever is on the other side is bad […] We have to exclude them,” she noted. She defies this matter as a form of extremist nationalism which, has first immerged in Europe.
“This is the negative side, and this is what makes it problematic. So, what you see is a form of nationalism that immerged mainly within Europe, it was very much influenced by European nationalism,” she added.
She said Zionist ideology has demonized those not in their circle, adding “this kind of self/other distinction that it insisted upon, that whoever is born a Jew or later on you are able to convert under certain circumstances and regulation to Judaism then you are inside this exclusionary kind of identity, and then you are able to earn many rights including a right to a land that does not belong to you […] Whoever is outside of this definition does not belong, they are somehow reflected in a very negative way […] They are deprived of their basic rights.”
“So, I think this is what makes Zionism problematic”, she concluded, adding “what has made a lot of people in the world who are truth-seekers somehow stand up against Zionism.”
Professor Kadkhodaee further said to resist Zionism does not mean to stand up against a certain religion or any culture. What we are standing up against, is the idea of excluding the rest – non-Zionists – from obtaining their fundamental rights. “So by standing up against Zionism we are not against any group of people, we are not against any religion, any culture”, she said.
“It means that this concept of excluding other people and building your rights upon the stolen land and stolen rights of the other people, this is the problem and people in the world should resist,” she continued
Iranian scholar also thinks the Zionists’ main goal has been broken down through history and does not own its initial characteristics. “It is difficult to talk about the overall goal because their goal has been broken down […] First of all, it was the land of Palestine which historically belonged to Muslim, Christian, and Jewish Palestinians. Stealing away this land, using whatever means to obtain it,” she said.
“The problem is not the goal, it is the way that you want to reach that goal […] So they have demonstrated throughout their history that they have been willing to use any means which will get them to their goal faster”, she further added.