Rabbis Call Out ADL for “Slanderous” Attacks
February 29, 2024

Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), representing over 2,500 traditional, Orthodox rabbis in matters of American public policy, today called out ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt for “slanderous” attacks after he took on the recent Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). In a post on X, Mr. Greenblatt likened “disturbing conspiracy theories & neo-Nazis at CPAC” to antisemitic rants from the Nation of Islam’s Louis Farrakhan and “frenzied protesters” targeting Bari Weiss and Jerry Seinfeld in New York City.

“Last week I attended my sixth CPAC representing CJV,” remarked CJV Managing Director Rabbi Yaakov Menken, “and felt even more welcome than previously. Its website announces that ‘CPAC Stands with Israel.’ The general session included a panel on campus Antisemitism and another featuring the father of an Israeli hostage. And, of course, there was the Shabbat at CPAC program, which Nick Fuentes attempted to disrupt last year after being ejected from the main conference. Against all of the foregoing, Mr. Greenblatt attempts to characterize the conference based upon intruders who got past security instead of its events and speakers. That is gratuitous slander.”

CJV noted an ongoing pattern of partisan bias, as the ADL has attacked conservatives, conservative organizations, and even free-speech advocates while minimizing left-wing antisemitism. Last year the ADL also targeted CPAC and its speaker Chaya Raichik, the Orthodox Jewish woman behind the popular Libs of TikTok account on X. The ADL included Raichik in a “Glossary of Extremism” until she threatened to sue, at which point it immediately quailed and retracted her listing.

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In November the ADL issued a statement implying that two policy organizations, the National Center for Public Policy Research and the National Legal and Policy Center, employed “conspiracy theories or conspiratorial language… that could be interpreted as an antisemitic dog whistle.” Both of these organizations are robust fighters for Israel and against antisemitism. As with Raichik, the ADL targeted a Jewish writer, Ethan Peck, by name—who, in this case, is an Israeli-American advocate on behalf of Jewish interests and against antisemitism and terrorism.

“The ADL appears as concerned with a target’s politics as whether he or she is actually hateful—much less antisemitic,” added Rabbi Avrohom Gordimer, Chairman of the CJV Rabbinic Circle. “In the Raichik case, its accusations were not merely blatantly partisan but, by the ADL’s own admission, indefensible. But it appears the ADL learned precisely the wrong lesson from its debacle; it used couched weasel words to avoid a similar reaction from Peck, rather than sticking to what is both true and protects Jewish interests. For the ADL to fritter away its credibility during an unimaginable surge of antisemitism in America is dangerous to everyone, and our community most of all.”

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