Iranians Aim to Build Friendship with Israelis by Countering Anti-Semitism on Social Media

Iranians inside Iran have been operating a Twitter account for a non-profit organization whose mission is to counter the Iranian regime’s anti-Semitic propaganda as a means to encourage friendly relations between Iranians and Israelis.

The Twitter account, Friendship Council for People of Iran and Israel (@fcpii_official), currently has over 3,200 followers and operates under anonymous management for security purposes, allowing them to successfully push back against the Islamic Republic’s anti-Semitic narrative from inside Iran for over 10 years.

“As the name of the association suggests, our main goal is to promote the friendly relationship between the people of Iran and Israel. All our efforts are to acquaint the Iranian people, who have been under the regime’s propaganda bombardment against Israel and the Jews for 42 years, with the facts,” FCPII’s founder “Kourosh,” who is based in Iran, said in an interview with Lisa Daftari Monday.

“My mother and father traveled to Israel between 1977 and 1977 to seek help from Israeli doctors to have children,” Kourosh said, describing the progressive fertility treatments his mother received at Israel’s Hadassah Hospital.   

“When I was growing up, they explained to me that thanks to the knowledge of Jewish doctors, I was able to be born.  It has always been with me that I owe my existence to the Jews.  I always felt good about the Jews, and although there was little information available and no internet in those years, I really wanted to know more about Israel and the Jews,” he said.

In 2010, Kourosh says he first started thinking about how he could bring the people of Iran and Israel closer together, which is when he took the initial steps in creating an underground, non-profit organization toward this cause.

The FCPII sees anti-Semitism in Iran as having a shallow root only propagated by “religious leaders and clerics in the minds of some fanatics and ignorant people,” and with the potential to be eradicated through the presentation of “historical facts.”

“Over the years, the Islamic regime has made great efforts to keep the Iranian people unaware of Israeli news by creating censorship and creating an atmosphere of fear,” but FCPII is actively fighting against this censorship by distributing information via social media about “different cultural, geographical, and technological advances in Israel.”

FCPII’s audience is primarily the “young and educated generation” from which they have received positive reactions to their mission; however, thus far, FCPII has not had success communicating with the Israeli government or Israeli media.

Despite facing obstacles, they have built connections and are attempting to become a registered NGO in Israel while continuing efforts “to attract ordinary audiences from Iran and Israel.”

“Enmity can be replaced by love and friendship. People of the world can have friendly relations despite differences of opinion and differences in religion,” said Kourosh, who believes “these friendly relations can be a good platform for cultural, artistic, and technological cooperation.”

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