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December 23, 2013

Tablet Magazine Q & A with ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman

ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman

Abraham H. Foxman

Abraham H. Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League, was recently interviewed by David Samuels, Literary Editor of Tablet Magazine, on a wide range of significant issues facing the Jewish community in the United States and abroad.

Mr. Foxman discussed matters ranging from domestic and global anti-Semitism, the recent Pew Survey of Jewish Americans, Jewish education and self-pride, prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace, Jewish organizational leadership, the shameful failure to alleviate the suffering of Holocaust survivors living in poverty, the case of Jonathan Pollard, and the special relationship between Israel and America.

When asked about concerns over the state of the American Jewish community — in light of the Pew study’s findings on intermarriage and assimilation — Mr. Foxman said that, for him, the worries are “of a different nature” and explained what he sees as the struggle between balancing the “drive for assimilation with the interests of our community.”

Mr. Foxman also discussed two lingering anti-Semitic beliefs that have not changed in five decades despite an overall decline in anti-Semitic attitudes:  the enduring canard that “Jews killed Jesus” and the belief, held by 30 percent of Americans, that Jews are more loyal to Israel than the United States, which he called “a very serious, haunting, political anti-Semitism.”

At the end of the interview, Mr. Foxman said one of the things that keeps him up at night is “the dependency of the Jewish people and Israel on this wonderful country.”

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December 20, 2013

Pennsylvania White Supremacist Loses Fifth Child To State

Just days after the November 11 birth, Pennsylvania authorities took into custody the newborn child of white supremacist Isidore Heath Campbell and his fiancée Bethanie Rose Zito, both of Bangor. The infant, named Eva Braun after the mistress and eventual wife of Adolf Hitler, is the most recent child of Campbell’s to be taken away by family service agencies in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.heath-campbell-NSM-rally

Campbell, a heavily tattooed neo-Nazi with a penchant for wearing Nazi-themed clothing, gained international notoriety in 2008 after a New Jersey grocery store refused to personalize a birthday cake for one of his children, named Adolf Hitler, from his earlier marriage with Deborah Lynn Campbell. 

Heath and Deborah had named their other children together JoyceLynn Aryan Nations (to honor a notorious neo-Nazi group), Honzlynn Hinler Jeannie (in an attempt to honor infamous Nazi Heinrich Himmler) and Hons Heinrich (also a nod to Himmler). 

In 2009, New Jersey authorities took custody of those children as a result of alleged evidence of abuse or neglect due to prior domestic violence as well as a determination that the parents did not have the psychological capacity to properly care for the children.  Heath Campbell has insisted that the children were taken by the state only because he gave his children white supremacist names. 

Campbell, the father of eight children from four different mothers, does not have custody of any of his children.  In June 2013 a New Jersey judge denied Campbell’s attempt to regain custody of the children he had with Deborah.  Campbell and Zito appeared at the hearing wearing Nazi clothing and regalia.

Campbell has had the support of some of the local white supremacists in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, who have been posting updates from him on his family situation in which he labeled the authorities’ actions a “kidnapping” and claimed that “they are taking only white children [and are] now trying to classify us as slaves.”  Campbell has urged people to fly Nazi flags and burn “Jewish flags” in support of him.

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December 20, 2013

Virginia Neo-Nazi Indicted On Threat Charges

On December 11, a federal grand jury in Orlando, Florida, indicted Virginia white supremacist William “Bill” White on charges of threatening a Florida judge, a former state attorney, and a law enforcement officer. The six count indictment includes five counts of making threats over the Internet and one count of unlawful use of identification information.bill-white-threat

The charges stem from e-mails allegedly sent by White to the victims and from posts allegedly made by White on the comments sections of several webpages, including one belonging to the Anti-Defamation League.  The communications followed on the heels of the May 2012 arrests of 14 members of the racist skinhead group American Front on conspiracy and other charges—the victims all had some involvement in that case.  Ironically, almost all of the charges against the American Front members would later be dropped.

The communications alleged to have been sent by White threatened to kidnap, torture, rape, and kill the recipients, their spouses, and their children and grandchildren.  Some of the communications made public the home addresses of the victim.

In the threatening comment made on the Anti-Defamation League’s Extremism & Terrorism blog, the poster (identifying himself as “Joe Tomassi, Charles Manson and Son of Sam”) wrote that “we are at your house, we are at your kids houses we are at your grandkids houses and we are sitting outside their schools” (punctuation as in original).  The message then provided the home addresses of the victims.  It demanded that authorities release the arrested white supremacists “or we will be sending you a message written in blood.”

White is currently in custody in Virginia serving a sentence for a 2011 federal conviction on threat charges.  He also awaits sentencing on a more recent conviction of threatening his estranged wife. White also previously served two years in federal prison following a 2009 conviction on threat and witness intimidation charges.  In that case, White used his website to encourage violence against the foreman of a jury in Chicago that convicted Matt Hale, a prominent white supremacist, of soliciting the murder of a federal judge.

White, a long time white supremacist, is the for­mer head of the now-defunct Amer­i­can National Social­ist Work­ers Party, a small neo-Nazi group; prior to that, he was a member of the neo-Nazi National Social­ist Move­ment.

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