ADL Briefed Members of Congress on Rising Threat of Global Anti-Semitism

New York, NY, August 14, 2014 … At a time of widespread anti-Semitism around the world in response to Israel’s military action in Gaza, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) briefed key members of Congress about the rising threat to Jewish communities and possible actions that the United States could take in response.

In a closed-door session with about 20 congressional leaders and their aides, Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director discussed the recent findings of ADL’s groundbreaking Global 100 survey of anti-Semitic attitudes and the dramatic surge of anti-Semitic rhetoric and violence in Europe and the Middle East in response to Israel’s military action in Gaza.

The meeting had been planned well in advance of the Israeli action in Gaza, but much of the discussion revolved around current events taking place in Europe, the Middle East and beyond.

“We covered a lot of ground, and many of the members asked us what the House and Senate could do to send a message that the rising anti-Semitism is unacceptable,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.  “The United States continues to provide an important moral voice, not only in standing up for Israel’s right to self-defense, but also for the safety and security of those Jewish communities around the world who are once again being threatened by anti-Semitic violence and intimidation.  We deeply appreciate the House and Senate’s leadership on this issue.”

The July 24 meeting was hosted by Rep. Kay Granger, R-TX, Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations, and Rep. Nita Lowey, D-NY, the committee’s ranking Democrat.

Just before Congress recessed for August, a bipartisan resolution on anti-Semitism was introduced in the House. Authored by Reps Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Nita Lowey (D-NY), House Resolution 707 condemns anti-Semitism and calls on Secretary of State Kerry to take specific action to confront it.  The resolution also applauded foreign leaders in France, Italy and Germany who have condemned anti-Semitic acts and called on those who had yet to take firm action against anti-Semitism in their countries to do so.

The ADL Global 100, a survey of attitudes toward Jews in over 100 countries around the world, was fielded between July 2013 and February 2014.  The survey of 53,100 adults found that anti-Semitic attitudes are persistent and pervasive around the world, with more than one-in-four adults, or 26 percent of those surveyed, being deeply infected with anti-Semitic attitudes.  The figure represents an estimated 1.09 billion people around the world.

The Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today it is the world’s leading organization combating anti-Semitism, exposing hate groups, training law enforcement on hate crimes, developing anti-bias education programs for students, countering cyber-hate and relentlessly pursuing equal rights for all.