Jewish and Persian Connections Mission

In response to statements emanating from the Middle East regarding nuclear threat to both the Jewish and Persian peoples, we seek to project an alternative voice on Jewish- Persian relations that disseminates knowledge about the historical and cultural ties between these two peoples, fosters friendship and openings for creative exchange, and contributes to the identity of adults and children of mixed Jewish and Persian ancestry.

Seeking Your Personal Stories and Intellectual Contributions!

Please submit your personal writings on the following topics:
a) Relationships between Persians and Jews
b) Raising a Persian Jewish child
C) Historical and/or current affairs between Persians and Jews/ Iran and Israel
D) Current Debate: Is the current conflict between Iran and Israel inherently tied into the Israeli- Palestinian conflict?

All submissions welcome including poetry, links and other recommendations. Please email any submissions to Authors are responsible for providing respectful, factually accurate, and fully citated submissions as a pre-requisite for inclusion. Articles should be a minimum of 2 paragraphs in length up to a maximum of 10 pages. Please use proper citation when referencing another writer or speaker. Assume no specific religious knowledge and explain all references to any religions. Translate all non-English words used, including Farsi, Hebrew, Arabic, Ladino or Yiddish. Writers wishing to anonymously post may use their first name only. Please send all submissions to All information outside of your submission will remain strictly confidential including your email and contact information. Thank you for your contributions!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Israeli Accused of Spying for Iran

STEVE WEIZMAN, Associated Press Writer. SF Chronicle/ SF Gate 4/17/2007

Israel's Shin Bet security agency has questioned an Israeli of Iranian origin suspected of agreeing to spy for Iran, officials said Tuesday, accusing the Islamic republic of stepping up its attempts to recruit visiting Israelis.

The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity under agency rules, did not say when the man, who is Jewish, was detained or if he was still in custody.

Israel and Iran are bitter enemies. Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has repeatedly called for Israel to be "wiped off the map" and Israel says he is seeking a nuclear arsenal. But the countries are not officially in a state of war and Israelis with family ties in Iran are still allowed to visit there.

Many Israelis have relatives in Iran and before Ayatollah Khomeini's 1979 Islamic revolution, ties between the two countries were close. According to Israel Army Radio, about 100 Israelis have visited Iran over the past two years. Some 25,000 Jews live in Iran.

The Israeli security officials said most of the recent Iranian attempts to recruit Israelis began at Iran's consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. The city is a short flight from Tel Aviv and a convenient stopover for Israelis of Iranian origin seeking to obtain an Iranian passport to visit their relatives. Iran does not allow entry on an Israeli passport, the officials said.

They said that over the past year Iran had stepped up its intelligence operations against Israel and had seen the visits of Israelis of Iranian descent as a recruitment opportunity.

Israeli Army Radio cited a senior Shin Bet officer as saying his agency uncovered 10 such attempts during the past two years. It said passport applicants at the Istanbul consulate were quizzed about their Israeli military service and about the general economic and security climate in Israel.

Haaretz newspaper said the man detained for questioning by the Shin Bet was picked up on his return to Israel and told his interrogators that Iranian agents had asked him to recruit, in turn, a relative who had previously worked for the Israeli security services.

It added that potential Israeli recruits had been arrested on entry to Iran and threatened with long-term imprisonment unless they collaborated.