Jaspal, Rusi. “Representing the ‘Zionist Regime’: Mass Communication of Anti-Zionism in the English-Language Iranian Press.” British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 41.3 (2014): 287-305.
Anti-Zionism constitutes an important ideological building block of the Islamic Republic of Iran. This article provides insight into the mass communication of anti-Zionism in the English-language Iranian press in order to examine how this ideology is ‘exported’ to an international readership. The article presents the results of an empirical study of two leading English-language Iranian newspapers, The Tehran Times and Press TV. The study uses critical discourse analysis and draws upon tenets of Social Representations Theory from social psychology. The following themes are discussed: (i) resisting social representations of Israeli statehood; (ii) constructing threat: the Zionist regime as a terrorist entity; and (iii) responding to threat: anti-Zionism as a religious duty for the Muslim Ummah. As a ‘mouthpiece’ of Iran, these outlets adopt and encourage a fervently anti-Zionist stance by refusing to recognise the statehood and civilian population of Israel and by constructing the ‘Zionist regime’ as a terrorist threat which should be mitigated collectively by the Islamic Ummah. Implications are discussed.