“Pope Benedict XVI today assured top leaders of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) that he would continue to raise his voice against anti-Semitism and attempts to isolate the state of Israel,” reports a press release from the ADL sent by William Doino, author of a recent “On the Square” article, Singling Out Israel Isn’t Christian .
The release (I haven’t been able to find any official or unofficial Catholic report of the meeting) continues:
“Thank you for what you do. It is very important what you do,” the pontiff told the ADL leaders. “Continue what you do.” When asked if he would continue to condemn anti-Semitism, the Pope replied: “I will, you know I will.” . . .
He [Abrham Foxman, the ADL’s national director] asked the pontiff to use the Church’s moral authority to help prevent Israel from being made a pariah by its enemies. ”Please do not permit the world to isolate Israel,” Mr. Foxman said, to which Pope Benedict replied, “I will be there.”
Mr. Doino also pointed to Benedict’s brief address as he left Israel in 2008, particularly this part near the end:
I wish to put on record that I came to visit this country as a friend of the Israelis, just as I am a friend of the Palestinian people. Friends enjoy spending time in one anothers company, and they find it deeply distressing to see one another suffer. No friend of the Israelis and the Palestinians can fail to be saddened by the continuing tension between your two peoples. No friend can fail to weep at the suffering and loss of life that both peoples have endured over the last six decades.
Allow me to make this appeal to all the people of these lands: No more bloodshed! No more fighting! No more terrorism! No more war! Instead let us break the vicious circle of violence. Let there be lasting peace based on justice, let there be genuine reconciliation and healing.
Let it be universally recognized that the State of Israel has the right to exist, and to enjoy peace and security within internationally agreed borders. Let it be likewise acknowledged that the Palestinian people have a right to a sovereign independent homeland, to live with dignity and to travel freely. Let the two-state solution become a reality, not remain a dream. And let peace spread outwards from these lands, let them serve as a light to the nations (Is 42:6), bringing hope to the many other regions that are affected by conflict.