NEW YORK – The decision by Columbia University officials to allow Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to address students yesterday demonstrates some Americans accept Iran is a “great power” and are beginning to question whether the Holocaust actually occurred, according to the spokesman of an Iranian-backed terrorist organization speaking to WND.

“This invitation proves that when Muslims and Arabs come from a position of power to the West they receive more respect and consideration to their causes and to their conditions and to their insisting on their sovereignty,” stated Abu Mosaab, an Islamic Jihad spokesperson and leader in the Gaza Strip.

“The fact that one of the American universities invited the Iranian president to raise whether the Holocaust happened proves that in the American people and leadership there is a hidden will to raise a serious discussion about these Zionists lies and propaganda,” Abu Mosaab stated.

The terror leader told WND Ahmadinejad’s address to Columbia “put on the American faces the question of what is your historical proof that this Holocaust happened?

“Doesn’t the Zionist version of what happened deserve to be challenged and questioned and doubted?” exclaimed Abu Mosaab.

Abu Mosaab’s Islamic Jihad terror group took responsibility together with the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror organization for every suicide bombing in Israel the past three years. The group is heavily backed and financed by Iran, according to Israel. Its overall leader, Ramadan Shallah, lived in Damascus and travels often to Tehran.

The Islamic Jihad spokesman applauded Columbia’s invitation to Ahmadinejad as “proving that in spite its power and influence there are some Americans, proud Americans, who are not afraid to go against the Zionist lobby threats and pressure.”

In his speech yesterday, Ahmadinejad said further study of the Holocaust was necessary as an academic pursuit and suggested that he had never denied its existence.

In response to one question, Ahmadinejad rejected the contention he was questioning the existence of the Holocaust: “What does it have to do with the Palestinian people?” he asked.

But then he defended the rights of “scholars” to question whether the Holocaust happened.

“There’s nothing known as absolute,” he said.

He also cast doubt on the official version of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, smiling at first during his appearance, but appearing agitated later as Columbia President Lee Bollinger and others accused him of being a “petty and cruel dictator.”

About Sept. 11, he asked, “Why did this happen? What caused it? What conditions led to it?” he said. “Who truly was involved? Who was really involved and put it all together?”

In Washington, there was criticism of Columbia for arranging the appearance. Sen. Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn., said the invitation was wrong because Ahmadinejad “comes literally with blood on his hands.”

The Iranian chief also said Iran is “friends with the Jewish people. There are many Jews living in Iran with security.”

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