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Anti semitic acts up on campuses { March 26 2003 }

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Report: Anti-Semitic Acts Up on Campuses
The Associated Press
Wednesday, March 26, 2003; 3:09 PM

A new report from the Anti-Defamation League says anger over the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians caused a jump in anti-Semitic incidents last year in the United States, particularly on college campuses.

An annual audit by the New York-based ADL found 106 acts of anti-Semitism on campuses in 2002, a 24 percent increase from the 85 a year before. The total number of anti-Jewish incidents increased by 8 percent, from 1,432 in 2001 to 1,559 last year.

The ADL said the anti-Semitism acts on campuses included name-calling and damage to buildings housing Jewish fraternal organizations. Anti-Israel rallies that didn't lead to overt episodes of anti-Semitism were not included in the audit.

"The unfortunate irony is that you would hope and believe that on a college campus the exchange of ideas would be tolerant and people would listen to other people," said Abraham Foxman, the national director of the ADL, which works to combat anti-Semitism

"Unfortunately, when a campus gets active, there is an intolerance of other people's views and sometimes, as we've seen this year, that impatience with other people's views expresses itself in violent behavior."

The founder of a group that promotes on-campus dialogues between supporters of Israel and the Palestinians said the ADL's survey reflects only part of what is occurring at colleges and universities.

"At the same time, we have never experienced a greater increase in dialogue being initiated between Jews and Palestinians and Jews and Muslims on campuses in North America," said Len Traubman of the Jewish-Palestinian Living Room Dialogue Group.

Since the beginning of the current academic year, Traubman estimated that Jewish and Muslim students at more than a dozen colleges and universities have initiated dialogues.


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2003 The Associated Press

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