In a letter to Morocco, the Simon Wiesenthal Center presented its sixth annual monitor of anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish incitement on the stands of what is billed as the most important book fair in the Arab world.
Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, wrote a letter to Moroccan Culture Minister Mohammed Amine Sbihi, ahead of the SIEL, the Salon International de l’Edition et du Livre, an annual International Fair of Publishing and Books that gains large public notice in the Arab world.
“This year, we have also covered the Doha (Qatar) and Muscat (Oman) Fairs and, though Qatar leads in the variety of Jew-hatred titles, Casablanca is way ahead in volume,with a tip of the iceberg figure of over 100 on display,” stated Samuels, who continued, “the worst recidivists at each Fair were Egyptian, Syrian (under the cover of Lebanon) and Palestinian publishers. That the 2015 Honored Guest in Casablanca was the “State of Palestine,” undoubtedly added to the number of Jewish conspiracy texts on display.”
The letter reminded the Minister of his telephone call to Samuels following the latter’s meeting with the Moroccan Ambassador to France: “Mr. Minister, you pledged that measures would be taken to vet all stands for displays of racism or fomenting hate and violence, as these violate Muslim values and the principles of the Moroccan monarchy and Constitution.”
Samuels lamented that “no such steps were taken. On the contrary, two weeks after the conversation, the Minister wrote that the volumes named in the Wiesenthal Centre report were ‘not antisemitic, but anti-Israel’.”
“We fail to see how ‘The Protocols of the Elders of Zion’, Henry Ford’s ‘International Jew’ or Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’, published in the early twentieth century, could be anti-Israel, but even if they were, they therefore,apparently, do not offend Muslim values, the Moroccan monarchy or Constitution,” emphasized Samuels, arguing that “these very institutions are, in fact, also targeted by the same Islamists that threaten the Jews in Morocco and beyond.”
The Centre stressed that the following publishers, endorsed by the SIEL, will be reported to the Frankfurt Book Fair, with our recommendation that “they be blacklisted from participating in the 2015 Fair, in that they violate European Union and Council of Europe provisions against racism, German law and the contractual terms of these exhibitors with the Fair authorities.”