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Library of Congress Report on Hamas Comes Under Fire

A Library of Congress report titled “Hamas: Freedom Fighters or Terrorists?” has sparked controversy among some members of the pro-Israel community here.

The six-page report, issued May 14 by the Congressional Research Service, describes the Hamas movement in terms that both the Anti-Defamation League and Rep. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) call distorted.

For the first time this year, Hamas, a Middle East-based Islamic fundamentalist group, received its own listing in the State Department’s annual study of global terrorism.

Both the ADL and Schumer charge that the Congressional Research Service report, on the other hand, does not fully describe Hamas’ terrorist activities.

They also say that the report uses one-sided terminology, such as “occupied Palestine,” not generally found in government reports.

The Library of Congress had no comment Tuesday on the controversy.

Last Friday, Schumer wrote to James Billington, the head of the Library of Congress, expressing outrage over the report.

The report’s title, Schumer argued, “is grossly misleading and does a tremendous disservice to members of Congress who look to the Library of Congress for accurate research and information.”

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