New York, NY, May 14, 2021 ... ADL (the Anti-Defamation League) CEO and National Director Jonathan A. Greenblatt issued the following statement on the escalating conflict between Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza:
As we move into Shabbat and the holiday of Shavuot, ADL’s thoughts continue to be with the people of Israel as they seek peace and safety from terror attacks, and we stand by Israel’s unequivocal right to self-defense. We also mourn and regret the loss of all innocent victims in this crisis.
The violence in Israeli streets is also unacceptable, including attacks on synagogues, mosques, and other holy sites. We applaud leaders like Israel’s President Rivlin who implored that “extremists must not set the tone” and that “the moderate majority, Jews and Arabs, want to continue to live here together.”
While we vigorously affirm the rights of all to express their views on this conflict, we denounce those who are targeting synagogues, kosher restaurants or other Jewish institutions for violence or vandalism, as we have seen in incidents in Europe. Also, we condemn the volume of online hate targeted at Jews and Jewish institutions around the world. This is not criticism of Israeli policy; this is antisemitism, and we will call it out wherever it happens.
On the ground in Israel, ADL is doubling down on our daily work of bridging divides between Israel’s diverse communities to help build a more cohesive and inclusive society. Through programs like our Social Cohesion Summit, we know what is possible when people work together and engage in civil discourse. We are convening Jewish and Arab groups to provide responsible voices to urge de-escalation of the situation to prevent further radicalization, particularly among young people.
As we pray for a cessation of hostilities, ADL will help lead initiatives to build Israeli-Palestinian understanding that could ultimately lead to future that provides both peoples with security, self-determination, and dignity.