Arab paper's publication of 'Protocols' tracts spurs calls for apology

Posted: Friday, November 15, 2002

PATERSON, N.J. (AP) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations has joined U.S. Jewish leaders in demanding an apology from a New Jersey-based Arab newspaper that published excerpts from an anti-Semitic tract.

The Arab Voice printed sections of the ''Protocols of the Elders of Zion'' in its August editions, outlining an alleged plan by Jews to dominate the world.

The tract was written in the 1890s and has long been dismissed by historians as a forgery concocted by Russian Czar Nicholas II's secret police to blame that country's problems on Jews.

Arab Voice editor Walid Rabah said he printed the excerpts to educate his readers and said he included a disclaimer with the article. Though published months ago, the edition of the newspaper that included the tract just recently gained public attention.

''We put a note about this, that we believe it's not true,'' Rabah said. ''We didn't do anything wrong.''

Charles Goldstein, New Jersey regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish civil rights organization, rejected Rabah's explanation.

''The Arab Voice's republication serves no function but to spread anti-Semitic lies,'' Goldstein said. ''It echoes what is occurring in Egypt this month.''

Egyptian television is broadcasting a multipart series based in part on the ''Protocols'' tract.

Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for CAIR, a Washington-based Muslim civil rights group, said the newspaper's action is as offensive as anti-Muslim comments made recently by the Rev. Jerry Falwell, other evangelical Christians and critics of Islam.

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