April 2019 ADL International Affairs Newsletter

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May 23, 2019


Middle East

ADL Task Force on Middle East Minorities to Host Launch Event in Washington, DC April 30

Please join the ADL Task Force on Middle East Minorities at a special event discussing Vulnerable Minorities, Illiberal Ideologies and Governments: How to Build a Better Future for Minorities in the Middle East on April 30 at the Brookings Institution, Falk Auditorium. For more information and to register, please click here

ADL Congratulates PM After Israel Election 

ADL CEO, Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted congratulations to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud Party after Israel’s official election results were released, writing: “We praise the vibrancy of Israel’s democracy and hope the next govt will ensure Israel’s security & economic well-being, remain committed to a democratic Jewish homeland with equality for all citizens and seek a just peace with Palestinians.”

ADL Joins Coalition Letter to President to Support 2 States and Oppose Annexation 

ADL joined the Israel Policy Forum, URJ and other Jewish organizations in a letter to President Trump asking that he make clear the US opposition to annexation of the West Bank, writing: “We recognize that the current environment may not be conducive to direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and a permanent resolution. However, we also believe action should not be taken by either side that would make an ultimate two-state solution unviable. We respectfully request that you affirm long-standing bipartisan consensus that the two-state solution is the essential path to an Israel existing alongside a future state of Palestine in peace and security and that you declare that the United States will not support any Israeli proposals to annex the West Bank, in whole or in part.”

ADL Deputy National Director, Kenneth Jacobson, explained ADL’s position in an op-ed in the ForwardThe ADL Opposes West Bank Annexation -- Because We Are Zionists

ADL Activism Against BDS and Delegitimization of Israel

ADL was actively engaged in countering efforts to delegitimize Israel and to promote BDS campaigns, including:
•    ADL welcomed Airbnb’s reversal of a policy to delist properties in Israeli settlements. ADL had met with the company’s leadership and questioned this policy
•    ADL New England wrote to the President of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst asking that the institution disassociate itself from a scheduled May 4 event featuring a “who’s who” of critics of Israel.  
•    ADL Southwest continues to be engaged in the aftermath of placement of mock eviction notices on student doors. ADL wrote to the university president, writing: “Efforts like these only seek to delegitimize Israel and prevent opportunities for meaningful dialogue on campus. As we have seen this strategy occur across America, the ADL has developed resources for university administrators, officials, and students for understanding and responding to intergroup challenges, bias, and anti-Israel issues.” ADL subsequently called the university response “slow and inadequate” in it’s minimization of the impact of these notices on Jewish students.  
•    ADL welcomed the defeat of a BDS initiative at UC Santa Barbara and praised the actions of the president of Brown in condemning BDS. 

ADL Responds to Media Misrepresentations about Conflict and BDS  

ADL wrote a series of responses to media articles, opinion pieces and podcasts regarding representation of Israel, the conflict and BDS, including reaction to a Michelle Goldberg op-ed in The New York Times, which alleged opponents of BDS bar free speech, an episode of The Daily on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that ADL said was “riddled with inaccuracies, omissions and premature conclusions,” and in response to Nathan Thrall’s examination of BDS in The New York Times Magazine.

Legislation Supported to Address Intolerance in Palestinian Textbooks

ADL facilitated and then publicly endorsed the introduction of strongly bipartisan legislation on April 18th to address incitement in official Palestinian Authority textbooks as well as in UN schools that use these books. The Peace and Tolerance in Palestinian Education Act (H.R. 2343) finds that  these official textbooks for children still “demonize Israel, encourage war, and teach children that Palestinian statehood can be achieved through violence”. The Act also directs the U.S. government to increase its monitoring and reporting on this important issue.

Return of Israeli Soldier’s Body After 37 Years Welcomed

Jonathan Greenblatt welcomed reports that the body of Zachary Baumel had been returned to Israel, noting: “His mother Miriam, and late father Yona, were tireless advocates who never stopped fighting for this day. May his family be comforted.”

Comment on Treatment of Coexistence Advocate 

ADL Israel questioned the harsh treatment of an advocate for coexistence, a member of the board of the Abraham Initiatives, at Ben Gurion Airport.  

Anti-Semitic Post by Iran’s Foreign Minister Decried 

ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt decried anti-Semitic posts by Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.  


ADL Condemns Incidents of Anti-Semitism 

ADL spoke out against incidents of anti-Semitism around the globe, including: a Good Friday ritual in Poland that featured beating and burning an effigy of Judas who appeared as a stereotypical Jew; an anti-Semitic arson and vandalism attack on a yeshiva in Moscow on Passover eve, anti-Jewish flyers in the UK; in France, a stabbing attack where the perpetrator said he wanted to “kill a Jew” (the victim was not in fact Jewish) and the vandalizing of a local office of the French Jewish Student’s Union; a cemetery desecration in Romania; and an attack on Israeli students in Germany. For a listing of select anti-Semitic incidents around the world please refer to ADL's blog

ADL Expresses Support for UK Jews Stance on Labour Party Anti-Semitism Problem

ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt expressed support for the British Jewish community following media reports that the Labour Party had failed to adequately address incidents of anti-Semitism by party members and activists, calling the unaddressed incidents “alarming, appalling and unsurprising.” ADL also expressed appreciation to former Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s condemnation of anti-Semitism.   

Appointment of Greek Special Envoy on Anti-Semitism Welcomed 

ADL welcomed the appointment of a special envoy on anti-Semitism by the Greek government. ADL Washington Director for International Affairs David Weinberg met with the Greek Foreign Minister Georgios Katrougalos in Washington, where he presented FM Katrougalos with a copy of ADL's recent study, Anti-Semitism in Greece: A Country Report.  

For a listing of select anti-Semitic incidents around the world please refer to ADL's blog.

Latin America

ADL Meets with Latin American Officials and Jewish Leaders 

ADL Director of Latin American Affairs, Liat Altman and New York/New Jersey Director of Community Engagement, Alex Rosemberg met with a board member of the Jewish community of Venezuela to update on the current situation in the country.

Monica Bauer ADL Director of Hispanic Affairs held a series of meetings in Mexico City regarding ADL’s MOU with the Mexican Government, including with the Jewish community, officials from the Foreign Ministry and the Mexican Senate.  

ADL Condemns Anti-Semitic Statements of Former Brazilian Governor 

Senior Vice President for International Affairs, Sharon Nazarian joined the Jewish Community of Brazil in denouncing former Governor Ciro Gomes for his remarks alleging Jewish corruption. 

Call for Community Security Following Argentina Incident

Sharon Nazarian called for enhanced awareness of security for Jewish community institutions following an apparent act of vandalism at a synagogue in Buenos Aires.

ADL Featured in Chilean Jewish Newspaper  

Liat Altman was interviewed by the Jewish community newspaper in Chile. Liat spoke about ADL’s work in combatting global anti-Semitism and countering the delegitimization of Israel.   

ADL Training to Latin American Consulates 

ADL conducted training on “Understanding bullying and cyberbullying” for Mexican Consulates in San Bernardino, Miami (Guatemala and El Salvador consular staff also attended), Chicago, Indianapolis & Milwaukee and Los Angeles. 


ADL CEO Meets with UN Secretary General 

ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt met with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to discuss trends in global anti-Semitism, hate speech and extremism. (photo above)

ADL Meets with US Anti-Semitism Envoy

ADL CEO and National Director Jonathan Greenblatt and Washington Director for International Affairs David Weinberg met with with US Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Elan Carr at the State Department to explore areas where ADL can support his work and vice versa. David Weinberg and ADL Washington DC Regional Director, Doron Ezickson then attended Carr's formal swearing in ceremony officiated by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on April 11th.

Condolences to Sri Lanka After Massive Terrorist Attack 

In the aftermath of the Easter Sunday attacks across Sri Lanka, ADL wrote to President Maithripala Sirisena to express condolences, writing: “This shameful act, targeting worshippers in churches on Easter Sunday, as well as tourists and many other civilians, is an attack on Sri Lanka’s diversity that shocks the conscience. Please know that ADL stands in solidarity with the people of Sri Lanka, its Christian community, and all victims of extremism and terror.”

Legislation to Support Rohingya Welcomed

ADL joined the Jewish Rohingya Justice Network in support of legislation authorizing humanitarian assistance for the Rohingya people and targeting the Burmese military officials responsible for genocidal activities.

Rwandan Genocide Marked

ADL marked the 25th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, saying: “We stand with Rwandans in our fight against hate & bigotry to ensure #NeverAgain means Never Again.” 

Post-Christchurch Senate Resolution on White Supremacy Welcomed

ADL welcomed Senate approval of a bipartisan resolution condemning the terrorist attacks in New Zealand and calling for the redoubling of efforts to combat the spread of white supremacist terrorism.

Advocacy for LGBTQ Human Rights Abroad

On April 9th and 10th, David Weinberg joined the Council for Global Equality for consultations and lobbying the Hill in support of LGBTQ human rights abroad, including meetings with State Department Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Scott Busby and with staff for Chairman Eliot Engel of the House Foreign Affairs Committee (D-NY), Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA), Co-Chair of the House Equality Caucus Rep. Sean Patrick Duffy (D-NY), and Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-NJ).



ADL met with Yarden Leal-Yablonka, Deputy Director General at The Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, to discuss areas for collaboration.  

New York/New Jersey   

ADL spoke to visiting German student leaders about our efforts to fight anti-Semitism and hate locally and globally.

Las Vegas  

Young professional groups around Las Vegas that included ADL, IAC and JewishNevada had the opportunity to hear from Elan Carr, Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating anti-Semitism, on his background, his approach and his agenda.  

San Francisco 

A delegation of Japanese Jewish studies scholars visited ADL in San Francisco to learn about our work and receive a presentation about anti-Semitism in the United States and around the world.


ADL’s Pacific Northwest Region hosted an ADL Roundtable for Latin American Consuls Generals featuring Senior VP for International Affairs, Sharon Nazarian in Seattle. Consul Generals and staff members from Mexico, Peru, Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador attended. The discussion included an update on the challenges facing Jewish communities in Latin America, ADL’s domestic work with the Latinx community, and ADL’s MOU with the Mexican government, which we encourage other countries to adopt.

Washington, DC

ADL Washington, DC and CSC co-sponsored a panel discussion with IPF as part of our Across the Divide series, at Congregation Adas Israel in Washington, DC. The panel, focused on the generational divides on Israel, featured Daniella Greenbaum Davis of Spectator, Yair Rosenberg of Tablet and Jill Jacobs of Truah, and was moderated by Amir Tibon of Haaretz. 

ADL Washington Director for International Affairs, David Weinberg gave a lecture showcasing ADL research on Mideast governments and anti-Semitic incitement at the largest synagogue in Virginia, Temple Rodef Shalom.

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