Hollywood Director Oliver Stone Calls Hitler a Scapegoat, Says Jews Controlling U.S. Policy

Controversial Hollywood director's comments draw harsh condemnation from Jewish groups.

Jonathan Lis
Itamar Zohar
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Jewish control of the media is preventing an open discussion of the Holocaust, controversial Hollywood director Oliver Stone told the Sunday Times in an interview Sunday, adding that the U.S. Jewish lobby has been controlling Washington's foreign policy for years.

"There's a major lobby in the United States," Stone said, adding that "they are hard workers. They stay on top of every comment, the most powerful lobby in Washington," said Stone, whose movies often deal with conspiracy theories.

The director's comments drew harsh condemnation from Jewish groups, including the American Jewish Committee, which said Stone "outed himself as an anti-Semite," in a press release.

Information and Diaspora Minister Yuli Edelstein (Likud ) also condemned Stone's remarks. "They are horrific," he said. "They are anti-Semitic and racist. Beyond the ignorance he reveals, there is demonization for its won sake, and a continuation of the endless recycling of the 'Protocols of the Elders of Zion.' When a person of his state expresses himself in this way, it could lead to waves of anti-Semitism and anti-Israeli [sentiment] and could even sometimes lead to real harm to Jewish communities and individuals."

Stone, 64, was interviewed on the occasion of the launch of his new documentary series "The Secret History of America," to be broadcast on the U.S. cable station Showtime.

Stone, who has also made a documentary about Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, also came out against the American approach to Iran. The director said it was impossible to defend Iran, because "Iran isn't necessarily the good guy," but insisted that Americans did not "know the full story."

Stone's comments to the Sunday Times echo pervious remarks by the Hollywood director, regarding what he conceives as the distorted view of figures such as Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin in U.S. media.

In January, when production of the documentary series was announced, Stone expressed some of his beliefs. He said he thought the media had distorted people like Stalin, Hitler, Chinese ruler Mao Zedong and 1950s American senator Joseph McCarthy. He said that while he would not present Stalin as a hero, he would "tell a more factual representation. He fought the German war machine more than any person."

Speaking at the at the Television Critics Association's semi-annual press tour in Pasadena, California, Stone said that "Hitler is an easy scapegoat throughout history and it's been used cheaply."

"I've been able to walk in Stalin's shoes and Hitler's shoes to understand their point of view. We're going to educate our minds and liberalize them and broaden them," Stone also said. Stone said the series would "move beyond opinions ... go into the funding of the Nazi party. How many American corporations were involved, from GM through IBM? Hitler is just a man who could have easily been assassinated."

"Hitler was a Frankenstein but there was also a Dr. Frankenstein. German industrialists, the Americans and the British. He had a lot of support ... Hitler did far more damage to the Russians than [to] the Jewish people, 25 or 30 [million killed]," Stone told the Sunday Times.

Oliver Stone, right, and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.Credit: Reuters