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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