The Anti-Defamation League’s Detroit Follies

What should worry ADL

First appeared in The Jewish Advocate

Written By Professor Barry Rubin, Director of GLORIA (Global Research in International Affairs Center) in Tel Aviv

Reading the Anti-Defamation League’s answer to Charles Jacobs (“ADL fires back,” Dec. 16), much of which is insults, made me curious. It was reasonable for Jacobs to base a study on press releases; these releases, after all, announce ADL reports and activities.

If indeed Jacobs was so wrong, it would be easy for ADL to produce a long list of public activities.

To figure out the truth, I went to the ADL Web site. On the front page is a letter ADL National Director Abe Foxman sent The New York Times saying the Muslim Brotherhood isn’t moderate; alongside was a complaint that sponsors pulled out of a television show on Muslims – is that bigotry?

The Extremism section of the site only has a discussion of right-wing groups; no Islamist or leftist group or activity is named.

A page on anti-Semitism in the Arab/Muslim world has material, and a page on terrorism includes Islamist terrorist groups. The International page includes criticism of the US ambassador to Belgium’s remarks whitewashing Islamic anti- Semitism.

So my very unscientific conclusion is this: To its credit, ADL devotes a significant effort to documenting Islamist anti- Semitism in the Middle East and terrorism.

On the other hand, I didn’t find material on anti-Semitism in Islamic publications or groups in the United States, despite the fact that many such examples exist. Moreover, the Web site seems to omit all mention of left-wing anti-Semitism, the most significant form of contemporary Western anti- Semitism.

Anti-Semitism is no longer the province of neo-Nazi skinheads, but of powerful Islamist forces that are on the verge of ruling one-quarter of a billion people. The dominant Western view of many of these movements is that they are moderate, and there is a willingness to work with them. Isn’t that a threat that should be the No. 1 priority of ADL?

Simultaneously, in the West anti-Semitism has become more common and even respectable in leftist and often pseudo-liberal circles. Shouldn’t this be the No. 2 priority of ADL.

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