During recent years, there has been a systematic and organized effort in Iran to publish many polemics and attacks against the Baha’i community of that country. Much of this effort is funded lavishly by the central administration in Tehran and approved by the national parliament, which has a specific budget line for “combating the Baha’is”, and devotes millions of dollars each year to fund this work. Many seminars, public talks and conferences are held throughout the country to acquaint the population with ways to confront the Baha’is, and, under the guise of “scholarship”, to maliciously undermine, belittle and completely misrepresent the Baha’i teachings. During the same period, over 80 books, hundreds of monographs and at least an equal number of articles in high-circulation newspapers and journals have been published against the Baha’i Faith, always completely twisting or simply falsifying Baha’i history, origins, teachings, aims, administration, community life, and every other aspect of the Baha’i movement.
Well-funded research groups with access to significant -resources are devoted to this work, and advanced degrees are offered to those who contribute to this body of polemical literature. Actually, the sheer extent of this polemical literature which has no basis in reality, the cost of producing it and the time and money involved in training people to transmit it are in themselves considerable testimony to the extent to which the clerical class of Iran feels threatened by the Baha’i Faith, which has no clergy. (Iran Press Watch has previously reported on many of these attacks.)
In an atmosphere poisoned by this massive intellectual and psychological warfare against the Baha’i community of Iran, the Baha’is are absolutely banned from responding ‑ the slightest attempt to publish a response is met with a harsh response by the central authorities, often involving a prison sentence, beating, expropriation of property and sometimes much worse.
Against this backdrop, Iran Press Watch notes the following significant anti-Baha’i publication, as reported by the Shabestan site, which appears below in translation:
A compact CD by the name of Besuy-e Haqiqat [Towards the Truth] and under the title “Rejecting the Wayward Sect of Baha’ism” has been published and disseminated by the Endowment and Humanitarian Organization of Isfahan’s Seminary.
According to the Shabestan news outlet, this compact CD contains 313 books and articles in Persian and Arabic. The Persian library of this CD has 285 books and articles in Persian under five sections: (1) Beliefs includes 47 books and articles; Stories includes 13 books and articles; Deduction includes 51 books and articles; and Rejection and Critique includes 63 books and articles.
Among the features of this software are the following: index to all books and articles, advanced search in the body of published texts or footnotes, attractive pictures and beautiful posters, a utility to print individual pages and copy materials to Notepad, and diverse setup environments.
From the above report, it is evident that such a massive effort to produce materials against the Baha’i community is only intended to turn public opinion against the Baha’is and to provoke national sentiment against this minority community.
[Posted on Monday, August 31, 2009, at Shabestan News. Translation by Iran Press Watch.]