Wednesday, May 25, 2005

"The best way possible"

Is this a dispute between the Judean People's Front and the People's Front of Judea, or does it have greater implications about the state of French Jewry?

"CRIF leader opposes petition on anti-Semitism"

By Amiram Barkat

The head of a major Jewish group in France has spoken out against a petition calling President Jacques Chirac to fight anti-Semitism, which was circulated among U.S. Jews.

Roger Cukierman is the Chairman of CRIF (Conseil Representatif des Institutions Juives de France) - an umbrella organization in the French Jewish community.

Cukierman is protesting the fact that the organization behind the petition - The World Jewish Congress (WJC) - published it without consulting first with CRIF.

The CRIF chairman also said that the petitioners were unfair in their criticism of the French government's treatment of cases of anti-Semitism.

Cukierman wrote to WJC President Edgar Bronfman, and he notes that in one of Bronfman's letters to prospective donors, he included a petition to the president of France.

"As a concerned Jew, I am writing to encourage you to employ your government's strongest resources to stop the alarming rise of anti-Semitism in your country," Bronfman writes in the petition.

"With anti-Semitic violence up 500 percent, I beg you to take action immediately."

In Cukierman's letter, a copy of which was obtained by Haaretz, he writes, "I don't think such a petition is advisable. The French government is fighting anti-Semitism in the best way possible."

"I regret that initiatives of such nature are taken without consulting with CRIF," he adds.

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