Saturday, July 4, 2009

Roger Garaudy

Roger Garaudy or Ragaa (born July 17, 1913, in Marseille) is a French author, philosopher and politician best known for his Holocaust denial. For more than 20 years Garaudy has resided in south of Spain, near Córdoba.



[edit] Early Life, Politics and Religion

Born to Catholic and atheist parents, Garaudy converted at age 14 and became a Protestant, but eventually became a prominent Communist. During World War II, Garaudy joined the French resistance, for which he was imprisoned in Djelfa, Algeria, as a prisoner of war of Vichy France. Following the war, the CommunistsFrench Communist Party. As a political candidate he succeeded in being elected to the National Assembly and eventually rose to the position of deputy speaker, and later, senator. He became a leading party theortician and authored scores of scholarly works. became powerful, occupying most of Eastern Europe, and Garaudy join the

Although a Communist, Garaudy remained a Christian and eventually converted to Catholicism. He was befriended by one of Frances most prominent clerics of the time, Abbe Pierre, who in later years supported Garaudy, even for the latter's most controversial views.

In 1970, Garaudy was expelled from the Communist Party following his outspoken criticism of the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia. Garaudy has authored more than 50 books, mainly on political philosophy and Marxism.

Garaudy converted to Islam in 1982, later writing that "The Christ of Paul is not the Jesus of the Bible," and also forming other critical scholarly conclusions regarding the Old and New Testaments. As a Muslim, he adopted the name RagaaPalestinian cause. and has become a prominent Islamic commentator and supporter of the

[edit] Holocaust Denial and Conviction

In 1996, Garaudy published his most controversial work Les Mythes fondateurs de la politique israelienne, later translated into English as The Founding Myths of Modern Israel. Because the book contained Holocaust denial, French courts banned any further publication and on February 27, 1998 fined him 240,000 French Francs. He was sentenced to a suspended jail sentence of several years.

[edit] Support from the Islamic World

Following his trial and conviction in France, Garaudy was hailed in the Muslim world and received substantial financial, political and public support. In the Islamic Republic of Iran, 160 members of the parliament signed a petition in Garaudy's support. Senior Iranian officials invited him to Tehran and received him warmly. Iranian leaders condemned Israel and the West for bringing Garaudy to trial. Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei cited Garaudy for his work in exposing the Zionists’ "Nazi-like behavior."[1] Iranian President Mohammad Khatami described Garaudy as "a thinker" and "a believer" who was brought to trial merely for publishing research which was "displeasing to the West." [2][3]

Garaudy has been praised through the Islamic World:

[edit] Support from Hezbollah

In February 2006, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah described Garaudy as "a great French philosopher." Nasrallah went on to praise Garaudy for exposing "alleged Jewish Holocaust in Germany" and stated that Garaudy "proved that this Holocaust is a myth." Nasrallah also criticized France for putting Garaudy on trial.[5]

[edit] Recent Activities

In recent interviews, Garaudy has stated that the attacks of September 11, 2001[4] were organized by the United States Government. He has also repeated his claim that the Holocaust is a myth, stating that the genocide of Jews by the Nazis during the Second World War was "invented as a myth by Churchill, Eisenhower an De Gaulle" to justify the destruction and occupation of Germany.

In December 2006, Garaudy was unable to attend the International Conference to Review the Global Vision of the Holocaust due to health reason. However, he reportedly sent a videotaped message supporting Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's view that Israel should cease to exist.[4]

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