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ADL Letter to The New York Times

Anti-Defamation League


Letters to the Editor
The New York Times
 
     October 21, 2003

To the Editor:

 

In his obsession with criticizing U.S. policy, Paul Krugman underestimates the significance of the anti-Semitic diatribe by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad before the Organization of the Islamic Conference ("Listening to Mahathir," Oct. 21).

 

Mahathir's comments cannot be explained away by themes of domestic politics. They come in the context of a surge of anti-Semitism in the Islamic world, and not only on the fringes. Conspiracy theories about blaming Jews for 9/11 are believed by tens of millions. Denial of the Holocaust is rampant in the media. Images of Jews in op-ed pieces, editorials, and cartoons reflect classic anti-Semitic stereotypes drinking the blood of Muslims, all-powerful, secretive and conspiratorial.

 

The last time the world saw such a hateful anti-Semitic tirade by a national leader, there was a tendency to play it down as well as only politics, as buffoonery, as a passing thing. We know how that ended up in Germany. Let's not make that mistake again.


  Sincerely,

Glen A. Tobias
National Chairman




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2003 Anti-Defamation League