The Anti-What League?

I was horrified and saddened the other day when the Anti-Defamation League joined the hateful mob rabble rousing against the Mosque near Ground Zero. I had planned writing a post about it but Peter Beinart nailed it at the Daily Beast so I’ll quote his powerful closing paragraphs instead:

For a long time now, the ADL seems to have assumed that it could
exempt Israel from the principles in its charter and yet remain just as
faithful to that charter inside the United States. But now the chickens
are coming back home to America to roost. The ADL’s rationale for
opposing the Ground Zero mosque is that “building an Islamic Center in
the shadow of the World Trade Center will cause some victims more
pain—unnecessarily—and that is not right.” Huh? What if white victims of
African-American crime protested the building of a black church in
their neighborhood? Or gentile victims of Bernie Madoff protested the
building of a synagogue? Would the ADL for one second suggest that
sensitivity toward people victimized by members of a certain religion or
race justifies discriminating against other, completely innocent,
members of that religion or race? Of course not. But when it comes to
Muslims, the standards are different. They are different in Israel, and
now, it is clear, they are different in the United States, too.

Indifference to the rights and dignity of Palestinians is a cancer
eating away at the moral pretensions of the American Jewish
establishment. Last Friday, in the case of the ADL, we learned just how
far that cancer has spread.

The ADL was such a fine organization for so long that it’s sad to see what’s become of it. The ADL’s stance on the mosque is a mockery of what it stood for before it hopped into bed with the Christian right and the neo-cons. It’s more than a pity, it’s a travesty.


5 thoughts on “The Anti-What League?

  1. It sounds like an Onion headline, but:
    “Anti-Defamation League finds a type of defamation they support.”
    Cancer is a good analogy, but perhaps flesh-eating bacteria is better.

  2. There’s been a lot of back and forth about this on my Queens synagogue’s listserve. I want to take the people who are against this and shake sense into them. How can they forget that everyone, no matter what their race, creed, or religion, was affected by 9/11? That victims in the towers and in the Pentagon and Pennsylvania died because they were allAmericans?
    In this instance, the ADL most certainly does not speak for me. This is horrible, horrible.

  3. The American Jewish establishment lost its moorings a long time ago, when they hitched their wagon to Reagan’s star and adopted a rigid and uncontestable Israel Uber Alles policy.
    There are small groups battling hard for a seat at the table (J Street, a progressive American Jewish lobby, for instance) but the money & power behind AIPAC make that almost impossible.
    Israel used to be the plucky David standing up to the behemoth Arab Goliaths surrounding it on all sides. The new Davids are the voices for peace and sanity both here and in Israel striving to be heard.

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