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ADL Urges Congress To Reject Incendiary Language Against Jews, Israel At Upcoming U.N. Conference Against Racism

Washington, D.C., July 31, 2001 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today called on Congress to reject anti-Jewish canards and the reintroduction of "Zionism is Racism" at the upcoming U.N. Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa.

In testimony before the House International Relations Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights, Michael Salberg, an ADL National Commissioner, said:

Any examination of the scourge of racism that labels ethnic movements like Zionism as inherently racist is a sham.

Unfortunately, the laudable goals on which the U.N. Conference was initially conceived are being commandeered by forces cynically promoting efforts to turn back the clock and endorse hateful anti-Jewish canards such as ‘Zionism is Racism,’ in an effort to de-legitimize Israel.

The legitimacy of Jewish aspirations for a homeland and Israel’s right to exist should no longer be a subject for dispute. To turn back the clock now, after more than 50 years since the establishment of the State of Israel, and 10 years into serious Arab-Israeli negotiations, is squandering an opportunity for the world community to commit to a truly global effort to eliminate the evils of racism.

Transcript of Testimony

Mr. Salberg, who also serves as the Chairman for ADL’s Committee on A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE Institute international programs, presented each Subcommittee member with a copy of ADL’s definitive anti-bias handbook, Hate Hurts: How Children Learn and Unlearn Prejudice (Scholastic, 2000).

In addition to attending both the upcoming preparatory meeting in Geneva, Switzerland and the World Conference itself next month, ADL has launched a comprehensive new Web site,, providing daily updates about the conference and the preparations for it. The full text of Mr. Salberg’s testimony is also available on-line at this site.

The League testified before Congress on behalf of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the Union of American Hebrew Congregations and the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America.

For more information, to receive a copy of Hate Hurts or to speak with an ADL expert on racism, anti-Semitism or xenophobia, please contact ADL Media Relations at (212) 885-7749.

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.

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