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ADL Letter to Bill Moyers Journal

Update: ADL wrote the following in response to Bill Moyers' letter of January 16:

Dear Mr. Moyers: 

We are saddened by your response to our concerns.  It shows a stubborn unwillingness to recognize the inflammatory content of your remarks.  By invoking Genesis and Deuteronomy followed by the reference to "God-soaked violence" being "genetically coded," you expressed a classic anti-Jewish animus. 

We believe such an anti-Semitic reference should be exposed.  Blaming linguistic imprecision simply does not excuse it.

Anti-Defamation League

Bill Moyers
Bill Moyers Journal
     January 13, 2009

Mr. Moyers,

In less than a thousand words, you managed to fit into your January 9 commentary: (1) moral equivalency between Hamas, a radical Islamic terrorist group whose anti-Semitic charter cites the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East and perhaps America's greatest ally in the world; (2) historical revisionism, asserting that Canaanites were Arabs; (3) anti-Semitism, declaring that Jews are "genetically coded" for violence; (4) ignorance of the terrorist threat against Israel, claiming that checkpoints, the security fence, and the Gaza operation are tactics of humiliation rather than counter-terrorism; and (5) promotion of an individual, the Norwegian doctor in Gaza, who has publicly expressed support for the September 11 attacks.

I have seen and read serious critiques of Israel's military campaign in Gaza, and I have disagreed with many of them.  Your commentary, however, is different, consisting mostly of intellectually and morally faulty claims that do a great disservice to the PBS audience.  It invites not disagreement, but rebuke.

On one point you are correct "America has officially chosen sides."  And rightly so.  Fortunately for our nation, very few of our citizens engage in the same moral equivalency, racism, historical revisionism, and indifference to terrorism as you.  If the reverse held, it would not be a country that any decent person would want to live in.


Abraham H. Foxman
National Director

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