ADL blasts Alice Walker over 'shocking' new book

Author, "unabashedly infected with anti-Semitism," criticized over book for "hostile views" towards Israel.

June 19, 2013 14:38
1 minute read.
Author, poet and activist Alice Walker

Alice Walker. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker “has taken her extreme and hostile views to a shocking new level” in her latest book on intertwined personal, spiritual, and political destinies, according a review of the book by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

Walker’s The Cushion in the Road revisits themes the Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist, poet, essayist, and activist has addressed throughout her career: racism, Africa, solidarity with the Palestinian people, the presidential campaign of Barack Obama, Cuba, healthcare, and the work of Aung San Suu Kyi.

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"Alice Walker has sunk to new lows with essays that remove the gloss of her anti-Israel activism to reveal someone who is unabashedly infected with anti-Semitism," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.

In The Cushion in the Road, Walker describes Israel’s actions vis-à-vis the Palestinians as “genocide,” “ethnic cleansing,” “crimes against humanity,” and “cruelty and diabolical torture.”

According to the ADL, the book also devotes 80 pages to a "screed on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict replete with fervently anti-Jewish ideas and peppered with explicit comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany."

The ADL claim twelve essays of the section, entitled On Palestine, are full of comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany.

The lobby organization also accuses Walker of denigrating Judaism and Jews. In a statement, Foxman said Walker's descriptions of the conflict are "grossly inaccurate and biased."

"It seems Walker wants the uninformed reader to come away sharing her hate-filled conclusions that Israel is committing the greatest atrocity in the history of the world," Foxman said.

Walker has been an activist for Palestinian rights for some time, traveling to the West Bank and Gaza to protest Israel's treatment toward the Palestinian people.

In June of last year, Walker refused to allow a Hebrew translattion of her classic novel, The Color Purple.

Most recently, Walker wrote an open letter calling on the R&B singer Alicia Keys to cancel her upcoming concert appearance in Tel Aviv in protest of Israel’s policies.

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