CHICAGO – An ousted American political science professor who believes some Jews have exploited the legacy of the Holocaust recently expressed his support for the terrorist organization Hezbollah.
Norman Finkelstein, who resigned from DePaul University last fall amid criticism of his opinions on the Holocaust, told Lebanese television that his view of Hezbollah is "rarely heard" in the United States.
"I have no problem saying that I do want to express solidarity with them, and I'm not going to be a coward and a hypocrite about it," Finkelstein told Future TV. "I don't care about Hezbollah as a political organization. I don't know much about their politics and anyhow, it's irrelevant."
The Jan. 20, 2008, interview was conducted in Arabic; Finkelstein replied in English.
Hezbollah, funded by Iran and Syria, engages in terror operations worldwide. President Bush and other U.S. leaders view the organization as an opposing force to peace in the Middle East, and it is listed by the U.S. State Department as a foreign terrorist organization.
Finkelstein’s support for Hezbollah would be illegal if he were helping raise funds for the organization, said Richard Miniter, a terrorism analyst with the Hudson Institute.
“If terrorists are able to use his name to fundraise in any way, that would be illegal,” said Miniter, who added that only Al Qaeda has killed more Americans than Hezbollah.
Finkelstein, who is the son of Holocaust survivors, said in the televised interview that Jews had to resist the Communists in World War II and the Lebanese people will have to make the same kind of choice about accepting or resisting Hezbollah.
"It's a choice that the Lebanese have to make — who they want to be their leaders, who they want to represent them."
Israel and the United States are resisting Hezbollah's control of the region, Finkelstein said.
"That's the problem," he said. "If Hezbollah laid down its arms and said, 'We will do whatever the Americans say,' you wouldn't have a war.
"That's true, but you would also be the slaves of the Americans. I have to respect those who refuse to be slaves."
He said Israel must suffer a defeat to lead to peace in the Middle East.
Asked to comment on this report, Finkelstein said he was only willing to speak live on air.
Alan Dershowitz, a Harvard Law School professor and supporter of Israel, said Finkelstein’s comments show that he is anti-American.
“If it’s not literal treason, it certainly is treason in spirit,” Dershowitz told FOXNews.com. “He belongs with Hezbollah."
Finkelstein is supporting an organization that brags about killing Americans, he added.
“This is a man who supports an organization that recently called for terrorist attacks against Jews and Americans all across the world,” Dershowitz said.
Finkelstein initially fought DePaul, a private Catholic university in Chicago, on its decision last September to cancel his courses and deny him tenure after six years as a faculty member.
He threatened to risk arrest by appearing on campus, but negotiations with university officials led to a peaceful exit.
Dershowitz, who weighted in on Finkelstein's tenure process, said Finkelstein’s support for Hezbollah vindicates the decision by DePaul to deny his tenure.
“To have an American citizen endorsing the views of a group of Iranian-funded Lebanese murderers, it shows you that the biggest front in the War on Terror is the propaganda war,” Miniter said. “Days like today, it looks like we’re losing.”
FOXNews.com's Melissa Underwood contributed to this report.