Source: Reuters, February 26, 2001
David Duke Exploiting Anti-Semitism in Russia -ADL
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - White supremacist David Duke has launched a campaign to exploit anti-Semitism in Russia, a nation he considers ripe to accept his racist theories, a Jewish organization said on Monday.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said in a report on anti-Semitism in present-day Russia that Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi leader, considered the country key to "white survival."
"There is an underbelly of anti-Semitism in Russia which David Duke is hoping to add to and exploit," said Abraham Foxman, ADL national director.
"Anti-Semitism, with deep roots in Russia is being stirred up by nationalist leaders and extremists," he said. "David Duke has detected an opportunity to spread his hatred of Jews and other minority groups to like-minded bigots."
Duke was in Russia on Monday and unavailable for comment, his personal assistant, Roy Armstrong, said. But Armstrong described the ADL report as "bulls---" and "pure defamation" and said Duke was in Russia to expose the activities of "Zionist Jewish figures involved in Mafia activities, organized crime and prostitution."
An article on his web site, (http:/www.davidduke.com), is headlined: "Is Russia the Key to White Survival?" and calls the former Soviet Union a "white nation" that is threatened by the "overwhelmingly Jewish" Russian Mafia.
The ADL said in its report that Duke has made several visits to Russia to meet with nationalist leaders and promote a Russian translation of a Duke book titled called "The Jewish Question Through the Eyes of an American."
The ADL said that while Duke was notorious as a white supremacist in the United States, he has introduced himself to an unsuspecting Russia as a respected author and politician. It said Duke has met with well-known anti-Semitic leaders in Russia and expressed a desire to move there and work with extremists.
The ADL said 18 major attacks on Jews and Jewish property were reported in Russia in 2000 and that likely many more went unreported. The group said that Russian ultra-nationalists were working to increase their presence.