Even Iran’s Khamenei not immune from Big Tech wrath after anti-vaccine tweet

by WorldTribune Staff, January 11, 2021

Wishing “death to America” or the destruction of the Jewish state, or praising and supporting terrorists — all good.

But when you question the rules on covid information set down by Big Tech, well, you’ve crossed the line.

Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Twitter on Saturday removed a tweet by Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in which he cast doubt on coronavirus vaccines made in the United States and Britain, saying they are “untrustworthy.”

“Importing vaccines made in the U.S. or the UK is prohibited. They’re completely untrustworthy. It’s not unlikely they would want to contaminate other nations. Given our experience with France’s HIV-tainted blood supplies, French vaccines aren’t trustworthy either,” Khamenei wrote in the tweet, which was published Friday on his English-language account.

Twitter removed the tweet and replaced it with a message that said it was “no longer available because it violated the Twitter Rules” against spreading covid disinformation.

Khamenei has banned Iran from importing American Pfizer-BioNTech and Britain’s Astrazeneca coronavirus vaccines, saying in a televised speech they are “forbidden.”

“I really do not trust” them, Khamenei said of the U.S. and UK. “Sometimes they want to test” their vaccines on other countries.

Last May, Khamenei posted a tweet in which he threatened to implement the Nazi “Final Solution” against Israel.

In another tweet, Khamenei threatened that “the Zionist virus will not last long and the Zionist regime will not survive – and will be destroyed.”

When confronted in July during a Knesset hearing on allowing Khamenei’s account to remain active, a Twitter executive said that the Iranian leader’s comments do not violate hate-speech rules, since they are considered “foreign policy saber-rattling.”

Twitter’s Vice President of Public Policy Sinéad McSweeney went further, writing to Israel’s Strategic Affairs Minister Orit Farkash-Hacohen that Khamenei’s hateful tweets did not violate their policies.

“World leaders use Twitter to engage in discourse with each other, as well as their constituents,” McSweeney wrote in a June 15 letter.

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