NEW YORK (Apr. 16)
Nathan Perlmutter, national director of the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, has rejected an offer by Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan that they hold a meeting because his continued threats and public utterances “have created an atmosphere far more conducive to fear and divisiveness than to rational discourse.”
In a letter to Farrakhan, the ADL leader said his initial reaction to a meeting had been “affirmative because I too felt that conversation among reasonable people, no matter their differences, is constructive.” Farrakhan made his request for a meeting two weeks ago while Perlmutter was out of the country.
Perlmutter went on to say, however, that upon returning to the city and reading Farrakhan’s new threats directed against Washington Post reporter Milton Coleman and his wife, he had been convinced that there was “no value” in it.
Perlmutter was referring to Farrakhan’s “we-will punish-you-with-death” threat against Coleman for revealing the anti-Semitic “Hymietown” remarks made by Rev. Jesse Jackson. Earlier, Farrakhan had used threatening language against Jews in connection with the Hymietown remarks. It was following Perlmutter’s criticism of those threats that Farrakhan sought a meeting.
Perlmutter termed the recently reported Farrakhan praise of Adolf Hitler as an “incredible and deplorable ignorance of history.”