ADL Calls On Christian Gathering To Step Back From The Politics Of Partisanship And Become A Force For Peace In The Middle East
New York, NY, February 28, 2002 ... The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed dismay that the US Conference of the World Council of Churches (WCC) is hosting a plenary session at its annual meeting in Boston entitled, "Repairing the breach; Restoring the streets. Ending the illegal occupation of Palestine." There is a wide diversity of perspectives on how Israel came to be in the territories and what is needed to proceed to peace and end the violence. Rather than recognize this fact, the WCC has advertised an inflammatory and one-sided point of view.
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director issued the following statement:
We are deeply disappointed that the US Conference of the World Council of Churches appears to have turned its back on the opportunity to be a force for peace. By seeming to embrace a one-sided point of view toward the struggle between the Arabs and the Israelis, the WCC has even turned its back on its own declared purpose for these meetings "to seek peace and reconciliation."
Peace and reconciliation depend upon a willingness to thoughtfully consider and weigh different points of view. At a time when we so desperately need moral leaders who can step forward in this spirit, the WCC seems sadly determined to walk away from this role. We hope that they will reconsider their program and embrace a more even-handed and just approach.
By declaring Israel's occupation illegal, the WCC disregards the fact that had the Palestinians accepted a state in 1948, or after the 1967 war, or after Camp David, there would never have been an "occupation" and there would not be one today. Arab and Palestinian rejection of Israel's right to exist has been a driving force in the ongoing conflict. By ignoring this fact, the WCC not only undermines constructive efforts to bring the two parties together, it actually strengthens the hand of those who advocate violence over reconciliation.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.