In "Border Patrol" – one of the more popular Flash games available on the Internet through various extremist Web sites – the object is to "kill" caricatures of Mexicans as they attempt to cross the border and gain entry to the U.S.*who says I don't self-promote...
Players control a gun and are charged with killing stereotypical Mexicans. Targets include a "Mexican nationalist," who carries a Mexican flag and a pistol; a "Drug smuggler," wearing a sombrero and carrying a bag of marijuana on his back; and finally a "Breeder" – a pregnant woman who has two small children in tow. Aside from the virulently anti-Hispanic themes within the game, it also hints at anti-Semitic myths such as "Jewish control" of the U.S. through an image where the border is represented by a bullet-ridden sign showing an American flag whose 50 stars have been replaced by a single Jewish Star of David.
School administrators must also wrestle with difficult questions about where the right to religious expression ends and the separation of church and state begins. Some school officials have discouraged their Seekers clubs over the years from having Jesus Day, while others have imposed strict limitations on advertising for the event, including prohibiting groups from using the name "Jesus" in any literature.What would happen if the Muslim student groups wanted to hold "Mohammed Day" and spread the word about Islam?
Once the State Department backed down, the Lantos bill was adopted unanimously by Congress and signed into law by President Bush. That was in October 2004. Why it took more than 18 months to appoint the envoy is unclear. In any event, as the law requires, the State Department last year issued its first-ever report on anti-Semitism. It was a mixed bag, and it illustrates the challenges that Ambassador Rickman will face.
In one respect, the report was a major step forward. It presented the first official U.S. government definition of anti-Semitism, and, significantly, it stated that “the demonization of Israel or vilification of Israeli leaders, sometimes through comparisons with Nazi leaders, and through the use of Nazi symbols to caricature them, indicates an anti-Semitic bias rather than a valid criticism of policy concerning a controversial issue.”
Equally important was that the report specifically included instances of Holocaust denial in various countries as examples of anti-Semitism. There was no pretending that denying the Holocaust is just another interpretation of history.
But at the same time, the State Department’s report exhibited the kind of bias for which Foggy Bottom has earned a reputation over the years — by minimizing the anti-Semitism sponsored by some Arab regimes.
For example, the report’s section on Saudi Arabia, a major promoter of anti-Semitism, was just 182 words long. By contrast, Iceland was given 387 words, even though the report cited only one instance of anti-Semitic harassment and one hostile cartoon there. Only 86 words were devoted to the Palestinian Authority, despite the frequency of anti-Semitism in its newspapers and on its television and radio programs. Armenia (194 words), Brazil (149), and Azerbaijan (142), where there is no evidence of government-sponsored anti-Semitism, were given more space in the report than the Palestinian Authority.