Defense Department Must Repudiate Boykin's Statements
New York, NY, October 22, 2003…The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) urged that the Department of Defense reject statements made by Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, US Army Lieutenant General, William G. Boykin, suggesting that the United States is engaged in a religious war with Muslims and that our "spiritual enemy will only be defeated if we come against them in the name of Jesus."
"This past weekend, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice reaffirmed the President's view that we are engaged in a war against terrorism and not in a war against Islam. We are also aware that the Lieutenant General has offered an apology 'to those who have been offended' by his remarks," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "We welcome their comments, but this matter cannot be closed without some official statement from the Department of Defense.
"We are not fighting a religious war, and to say that we are fighting in the name of Jesus is to make it exactly that. Such a characterization is also profoundly offensive to the many courageous Americans in uniform who are not Christian. Consequently we believe that the Department of Defense must state, loudly and clearly, that Lieutenant General Boykin's comments do not represent the views of the United States military."
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.