ADL To Educational Publisher: 'Zionism' Has No Place In Encyclopedia On Racism
New York, NY, November 18, 2008 … Declaring that "Zionism simply has no place in an encyclopedia on racism," the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) called on an educational publisher to remove an article on the national movement of the Jewish people replete with false claims and distortions about Zionism and Israel.
The entry on "Zionism" appeared in The Encyclopedia of Race and Racism, published by Gale, a division of Cengage Learning.
"Zionism simply has no place in an encyclopedia on racism," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "It is offensive to see it there, period. Any effort to explain this, defend it, rationalize it, or to give others an opportunity to rebut it is unacceptable. Nothing can change the fact that a fundamental mistake and a terrible error in judgment was made."
Gale's proposed solution to offer other perspectives while standing by the original article is "simply inadequate," Mr. Foxman added. "This would only give legitimacy to an article that should never have been included in the first place."
The Encyclopedia's entry on Zionism was authored by Noel Ignatiev, a known anti-Zionist. Ignatiev is co-founder of "Race Traitor: Journal of the New Abolitionism," an online publication that has featured anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic authors who demonize Israel and the Zionist movement.
In a letter to Patrick C. Sommers, President of Gale, ADL pointed to the encyclopedia entry's "invented claims about Israel's practices and incendiary statements regarding Zionist ideology" as making it unfit for inclusion in an encyclopedia the purports to contain factual information. The League's letter called on the publisher to "take immediate steps to remove this entry from your publication."
The League's letter to Gale noted that the charge of "Zionism is Racism" has long been used by Israel's critics to demonize and delegitimize the existence of the Jewish State including, most notoriously, in a 1975 resolution passed in the United Nations General Assembly, which was ultimately repealed in 1991.
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.