Culture

1,500 Rabbis Slam the ADL as Unable Even to Identify, Much Less Fight, Anti-Semitism

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has strayed a long distance from its stated mission “to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all.” For years now, it has been essentially the Leftist Anti-Defamation League, espousing far-Left cause after far-Left cause, no matter how opposed these causes were to their supposed core mission of stopping anti-Semitism. Now the Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), a coalition of over 1,500 Orthodox Jewish rabbis, is calling out the ADL for having lost “the moral clarity to properly identify antisemitism, let alone combat it.”

The ADL earned this richly deserved repudiation by declaring “anti-Israel activism in and of itself is not antisemitism,” and announcing that it would not reject anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) resolutions out of hand, but would “carefully evaluate” each one. CJV Southern Regional Vice President Rabbi Moshe B. Parnes minced no words in laying bare the extent of the ADL’s betrayal: “Only someone with no sense of Jewish history could claim that BDS is not antisemitic. The first Nazi edict was a boycott of Jewish businesses; economic warfare directed against the Jewish people was then and has always been one of the first signs of systemic Jew-hatred. Combating antisemitism in all its forms defined the ADL’s mission throughout its long and storied history, and it is crucial that it return to its core goals.”

Yet instead of confronting and combating anti-Semitism, when the crazy-Left ice cream manufacturer Ben & Jerry’s announced that it would no longer sell ice cream in what it falsely claimed was “occupied Palestinian territory,” the ADL’s response was tepid, at best. “We are disappointed by this decision from @benandjerrys,” the ADL tweeted. “You can disagree with policies without feeding into dangerous campaigns that seek to undermine Israel.”

That was it. In response to Ben & Jerry’s boycott, the ADL didn’t call for a counter-boycott, or put pressure on Ben & Jerry’s to reverse its stance, or make any effort to educate the public on the salient issues, or even tell supporters of Israel to get their ice cream elsewhere. All it did was tweet.

This was similar to the ADL’s weak response to the repeated anti-Semitic statements from Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Mogadishu). But the ADL’s timidity before Omar as well as Ben & Jerry’s was understandable: maybe they were just short-handed. Maybe the ADL’s top dogs were busy with their new initiative. JTA reported Tuesday: “The Anti-Defamation League has joined with PayPal to research how extremists use financial platforms to fund criminal activity. The partnership will focus on ‘uncovering and disrupting the financial pipelines that support extremist and hate movements’ by targeting ‘actors and networks spreading and profiting from all forms of hate and bigotry,’ according to an ADL news release published Monday morning.”

Related: Tlaib, AOC Want Treasury to Deny Tax-Exempt Status to Groups Aiding Israel’s ‘Illegal Settlement Enterprise’

That sounds like important work, until one realizes that the “extremists” that the ADL has in mind include the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), Pamela Geller’s organization, which is dedicated to defending the freedom of speech, the freedom of conscience, the equality of rights of all people before the law, and individual rights. AFDI is also staunchly pro-Israel and is an unapologetic foe of Palestinian jihad terrorism, to which the ADL’s response has been decidedly tepid. Like New York officials poring over Trump’s tax records hoping they can find some crime to hang on him, the ADL has asked the Justice Department to review AFDI’s tax-exempt status, not because it has evidence of any wrongdoing, but because it hopes that Biden’s partisan Justice crew will turn up something that can be presented as wrongdoing.

So the ADL is letting the Ben & Jerry’s boycott pass with just a tweet, heedless of the fact that its demonization of Israel is an active manifestation of anti-Semitism that is damaging not to Israel alone, but also to the Jewish people and supporters of Israel worldwide. At the same time, it is working to destroy a pro-Israel organization that stands against the genuine anti-Semitism it fears to oppose.

It will likely work. The pathetic sheep who still think that the ADL is a civil rights organization will be taken in. Those who are more thoughtful will notice that something is very amiss. To say that the ADL had betrayed its mission would be an understatement. It is at this point one of the Left’s foremost smear-and-destroy machines, relying on the good will it built up in the days when it was true to its stated mission to hoodwink its supporters into buying its defamation, libel, and targeting of people whose political positions it dislikes. Rage, lies and hatred are all the Left has these days. How long will it continue to be taken seriously when it claims the moral high ground? The Coalition for Jewish Values has exposed its hypocrisy, and for that it deserves the gratitude of all free people.