Sean Stone, the son of esteemed but controversial director Oliver Stone, appeared on Fox News' “The O'Reilly Factor” Monday night to discuss his recent trip to Iran, during which he converted to Islam.
Now Stone objected to the word convert since he claimed he still believes in the same Judeo-Christian god, but regardless of how you phrase it O'Reilly was curious how Stone, whose father was born half-Jewish, could support a leader, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has claimed that the Holocaust never happened.
“With Ahmadinejad, he's very misunderstood,” Stone said.
While Stone said there is “no room for Holocaust denial,” he tried to explain Ahmadinejad's virulently anti-Semitic rhetoric as a result of Westerners meddling in Middle Eastern affairs.
The Iranians have a problem with “imperialism as a longstanding policy in the region.”
Throughout the interview O'Reilly pressed Stone on the extremists in Iran while Stone tried to defend the Iranians dislike of the West without denouncing the United States himself.
O'Reilly compared visiting Iran now to visiting Germany in the 1930s and talking with Adolf Hitler, suggesting Stone is a pawn. Stone presented himself as an ambassador, one who asked the government to “stop with this ‘down with America' nonsense.”
Which side of the discussion you favor depends on your view of international politics – or lack thereof – but it is clear the younger Stone has picked up a few things from his father.
Oliver Stone is famous not just for his films but for his politics, which recently led him to make a film about various South American leaders, including Venezuela's Hugo Chavez. Chavez, like Ahamdinejad, is outspoken about his distaste for the United States.
So with both Stones serving as unofficial U.S. ambassadors, who do you think ends their denunciation of the stars and stripes first, Chavez or Ahamdinejad?
Here's the video:
- Oliver Stone
- Mahmoud Ahmadinejad