The ADL Motto: If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it!
ADL Criticizes French Foreign Minister's Statement on Release Terms for Israeli Soldier
New York, NY, February 23, 2009 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today criticized French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner's recent remarks against Israel's decision to make the release of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit a precondition for opening the Gaza border crossings. The League said Minister Kouchner's remarks "undermined Israel's negotiating position."
In a letter to President Nicholas Sarkozy, ADL said the foreign minister's remarks in an interview with the London-based Arabic paper Asharq al-Awsat contradict his own statements on securing Shalit's freedom.
"President Sarkozy has demonstrated in words and actions that Gilad Shalit's release is a priority for France," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "Kouchner's statement undermines and weakens Israel's negotiating position on Shalit, and contradicts President Sarkozy's principled approach to gain freedom for Shalit, an Israeli and French citizen."
Shalit has been held hostage by the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas since June 2006, and Israel's government has made his freedom a precondition to opening the crossings with Gaza for more than humanitarian goods.
"We hope President Sarkozy will forcefully reaffirm that Gilad Shalit's freedom is of highest priority and that Israel's efforts to secure his safe and immediate return should not be undermined," Mr. Foxman said.
In remarks last August to France's diplomatic corps, President Sarkozy said of the situation facing Shalit and other hostages: "My obligation as President -- and as a human being -- is not to spare any effort to get all of these victims out of their hell." President Sarkozy has intervened with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Shalit's behalf, calling it a matter of personal interest, and arranged for a proof of life and an exchange of letters between Shalit and his Father, Noam Shalit.