The U.S. Special Representative to Iran, Brian Hook, visited the Museum of Tolerance to discuss the Trump administration’s Iran policy. The timing of the visit was especially significant, given the administration’s recent actions affecting the region.
Hook was joined at the Museum by Rabbi Marvin Hier, Founder and Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the Center’s Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action, Reverend Johnnie Moore, founder of the Congress of Christian Leaders, as well as Juliana Taimoorazy, Iraqi Christian Relief Council Founder and President.
During a brief tour of the Museum, Hook viewed an original letter written and signed by Adolph Hitler in 1919 in which he calls for the destruction of the Jewish people.
During a closed-door meeting, Hook briefed Simon Wiesenthal Center leadership as well as national interfaith and local Iranian leaders on policy related to Iran. He also took part in a press conference attended by both national and international media outlets.
Before fielding questions regarding the latest on the U.S.-Iran tension, Hook stated, “I wanted to express we, the administration, stand in solidarity opposing all acts of anti-Semitism and vandalization and all violence against Jews. I am here visiting the Wiesenthal Center [Museum of Tolerance]. It’s an organization I have worked with in the past and I very strongly support their work. It was an honor for me to visit the Museum and to see many of the exhibits they have here and to see the great job they are doing and seeing so many school groups move through this museum so that they will be educated on the horrors of the Holocaust, which the Iranian regime continues to deny and undermine the importance of tolerance as a fundamental goal.”
In addition to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Hook delivered an address entitled “Urging the Iranian Regime, Emerging With the Iranian People” on the evening of Jan. 6 at Eretz Synagogue & Cultural Center in Tarzana. Hook also spoke at Sinai Temple in Westwood and visited Nessah Synagogue in Beverly Hills. Farshid Joe Shooshani, a member of the Beverly Hills Planning Commission, estimated that some 2,000 people heard Hook speak during his Southland visit.
“We have the largest Iranian community in the entire country here. So, it makes sense for him to come. It is a sign of respect to us. And we welcomed the chance to express our opinions and give our advice to a representative of the administration,” said Shooshani.