Reversing a long-standing position, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), one of the most influential Zionist organizations in the United States, has come out against recognition of the rights of Arab Jews.
In a 7 January press release, the ADL
welcomed the resignation of a close adviser to Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi who last week called for Jews of Egyptian descent to return to Egypt and “leave Israel.”
The statement also condemned the advisor, Essam el-Erian’s, criticisms of Israel.
“This broad-brush negative stereotype of Jews by a senior Egyptian official was inappropriate, unacceptable and raises serious questions about the attitudes of some of Egypt’s leaders towards Jews,” the press release quoted ADL National Director Abraham Foxman as saying.
El-Erian called for Jews to come home
But the comments of el-Erian, a leading figure in the ruling Muslim Brotherhood, as reported by the Associated Press, only heaped praise on Jews qua Jews while attacking Israel and Zionism:
“I wish our Jews return to our country, so they can make room for the Palestinians to return, and Jews return to their homeland in light of the democracy” evolving in Egypt, he said. “I call on them now. Egypt is more deserving of you.”
“Why stay in a racist entity, an occupation, and be tainted with war crimes that will be punished, all occupation leaders will be punished,” he said. He added in separate comments that the Zionist “project” will end.
As usual, Foxman – in a blatantly anti-Semitic move – has deliberately conflated criticism of Israel with criticism of all Jews.
ADL reverses itself
Foxman’s condemnation of a call for Egypt’s Jews to be invited home represents a sharp reversal for the ADL which in 2008 hailed a US House of Representatives resolution on Jews from Arab lands:
“In passing this resolution, the House has recognized that any just discussion and resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict must also address the narrative and outstanding claims of the hundreds of thousands of Jews who were forced to flee Arab lands in the years surrounding the establishment of the State of Israel,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.
“The story of these refugees who were forced to leave behind centuries-old communities had been ignored for too long.”
Given this position, the ADL ought, if anything, to have warmly welcomed El Erian’s willingness to see the terrible plight of Egyptian Jews exiled in Palestine reversed.
While hundreds of thousands of Jews did leave Arab countries after the establishment of Israel, and in many cases were deprived of property and citizenship when they left, the notion that they were “forced” out is false, as Joseph Massad shows in a recent article for Al Jazeera debunking Zionist propaganda.
Israel itself was involved in terrorizing Jews in Iraq and Egypt in order to encourage them to leave for Palestine.
The real reason that Zionist organizations and the Israeli government have recently revived propaganda about Arab Jews is not out of concern for them, but rather a cynical campaign campaign to pit Arab Jews against Palestinian refugees and to advance the claim that the expulsion of the Palestinians was part of a “population exchange.”
There’s no clearer proof of this cynicism than the ADL’s panicked reaction when a senior Egyptian official apparently took the concern for the fate of the Jews from Arab lands seriously.
After the Israeli government’s renewed campaign last year, some Arab and Kurdish Jews formed the Committee of Baghdadi Jews in Ramat-Gan to reject Israel’s misuse of their history.
Affirming that the Israeli government “does not represent us,” the group said they would wage an international campaign for compensation from Israel if an investigation found that Israel’s founding prime minister David “Ben-Gurion did, in fact, carry out negotiations over the fate of Iraqi Jewish property and assets in 1950, and directed the Mossad to bomb the community’s synagogue in order to hasten our flight from Iraq.”