Press Releases

Museum of Tolerance Urged Not to Support Extremist Group

(ANAHEIM, CA, 1/26/2005) – The Southern California office of the Council on
American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) today called on the Simon Wiesenthal
Center Museum of Tolerance (MOT) in Los Angeles to pull its sponsorship
from an event prompted by the efforts of a group known to advocate
extremist and Islamophobic views.

During the January 30th MOT event, an Israeli bus involved in a suicide
bombing and now owned by the Jerusalem Connection, formerly known as
Christians for Israel, will be displayed. SEE:

Jerusalem Connection President Dr. James M. Hutchens, is quoted today in
the Los Angeles Jewish Journal as saying moderate Muslims “don’t take the
Quran seriously”¦because the Quran calls for the destruction of the infidel.”

[In fact, the Quran states: “It may well be that God will bring about love
(and friendship) between you and those with whom you are now at odds”¦God
does not forbid you to show kindness and deal justly with those who neither
fight against your faith nor drive you out of your homes: for God loves the
just.” (60:7-8) It also states: “Those who follow the Jewish faith, and the
Christians”¦all who believe in God and the Last Day and do righteous deeds –
shall have their reward with their Lord. They will have nothing to fear or
to regret. (2:62)]


Hutchens has in the past spoken out strongly against the Middle East peace
process, the creation of a Palestinian state and Israeli withdrawal from
the Occupied Territories. He has even suggested that there is no such thing
as a “Palestinian people.”

He wrote in one commentary: “In a word, the Palestinians do not qualify for
the protections to be given to those under Israel’s God-ordained
governance”¦those who promote a Palestinian state have placed themselves in
alliance against God.”

In a letter to Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean of the Museum of Tolerance, CAIR-LA
requested that the museum disassociate itself from such an intolerant group.

CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush wrote:

“…[T]he bus tour will increase animosity and incite hatred against the
American Muslim and Arab communities. Unfortunately, this often translates
into hate crimes and hate incidents against innocent people.

“…Those intolerant views, widely rejected by even the most extremist
groups in Israel, serve to dehumanize and demonize all Palestinians and all
Muslims…Such rhetoric poisons the atmosphere of cooperation and
reconciliation at a time when both parties, Israelis and Palestinians, are
coming together to forge a better future.

“Given the troubling nature of the Jerusalem Connection, we call upon the
Simon Wiesenthal Center Museum of Tolerance, as a center dedicated to
tolerance and peace, refrain from giving legitimacy and support to such a
hate-filled group and withdraw its moral and monetary support to the
Jerusalem Connection and all its activities.”

In December of last year, CAIR-LA called on the Simon Wiesenthal Center to
repudiate Islamophobic comments blaming the faith of Islam for terror made
by a speaker at a conference sponsored by the center’s Canadian branch.

CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 31 offices and
chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance understanding
of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American
Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

To read CAIR’s Mission, Vision Statement and Core Principles, go to:

– END –

CONTACT: CAIR-LA, Sabiha Khan, 714-776-1847 or 714-390-0334, E-Mail:


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