ADL CALLS MALAYSIAN PRIME MINISTER'S OFFENSIVE REMARK
CONSISTENT WITH LONG RECORD OF ANTI-SEMITISM
New York, NY, October 13, 1997...The Anti-Defamation League (ADL ) today said
that a recent remark regarding Jews by the Malaysian Prime Minister is "consistent
with his long record of anti-Semitism and belief in a Jewish conspiracy
to bring about the downfall of Malaysia." The Prime Minister has since
said he was misquoted.
It was reported that in an October 10 speech on the drop in the value
of the Malaysian currency, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad stated, "We
are Moslems and the Jews are not happy to see Moslem's progress. We may
suspect that they have an agenda but we do not want to accuse them...If
viewed from Palestine, the Jews have robbed Palestinians of everything but
they cannot do this in Malaysia, so they do this." Mr. Mahathir has
since said he was misquoted, saying, "I only made a statement, but
the press went on to say that I was accusing the Jews. We cannot make such
wild accusations. They will twist our arms. We are not making any accusations
and will never make any accusations."
"The recent statements made by Prime Minister Mahathir come as no
surprise," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "Indeed,
they are consistent with his long record of anti-Semitism and belief in
a Jewish conspiracy to bring about the downfall of Malaysia."
Previous statements by Prime Minister Mahathir include a comment in 1988
that the Western media is controlled by Jews, because "they have to
bow to Zionist interests" and an accusation that "Jewish-owned"
foreign publications are attempting to destabilize Malaysia. After an unfavorable
1986 article about Malaysia, Prime Minister Mahathir claimed the Wall Street
Journal was controlled by Jews and part of a Zionist plot to overthrow his
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.