APn 02/11 1722 Anti-Semitism Copyright, 1988. The Associated Press. All rights reserved. P

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APn 02/11 1722 Anti-Semitism Copyright, 1988. The Associated Press. All rights reserved. PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- While membership in white supremacist or hate groups is decreasing nationwide, new groups keep forming that are more violent and extreme than their precursors, officials of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith said Thursday. "(Hate) changes its colorations," said Abraham Foxman, national director of the group. "The names are different, but it's still there." Foxman was in Palm Beach for three-day conference of the ADL's National Executive Committee, made up of 250 Jewish community leaders. The panel is discussing anti-Semitism, Jewish-Catholic relations, Soviet Jewry and growing unease in the United States about Israel's policies in occupied territories. The group released a 139-page report, called "Hate Groups In America: A Record of Bigotry and Violence," an update of a study done eight years ago. It identifies at least 67 active racist and anti-Semitic organizations operating in the United States and said about 50 publications regularly "spew racist hatred and anti-Semitism." The report said Klan membership slipped between 8,000 and 10,000, down to about 5,500, since the 1982 report, with "other traditional segments of the movement losing strength proportionally." The ADL quotes Justice Department figures showing that 150 people have been prosecuted for racially motivated violence from 1979 to 1985, including 84 members of the Ku Klux Klan. The examples cited include the slaying of Denver radio talk show host Alan Berg, the bombing of synagogues in Indiana and Idaho and arson at a Missouri church. "Traditional hate groups such as the Klan and the neo-Nazis, who for many, many years were competitive, in the last dozen years have begun to meld together and merge in common cause to set up ... new organizations such as The Order and the Aryan Nations," said Justin Finger, associate national director of the ADL. "There's one specifically dark cloud on the horizon," he said, "the emergence of an import from England called the skinheads -- young people in their teens and 20s who shave their heads into punk cuts, listen to hard rock music, wear Nazi regalia, and are bitterly hostile to Jews, blacks and Hispanics." Finger said the skinheads have surfaced in Midwestern cities such as Chicago, Cincinnati and Dallas, as well as several cities in Florida, including Clearwater, Gainesville and St. Petersburg. "What is significant about the emergence of this group is that more traditional extremists are delighted because they see skinheads as a new and fertile recruiting ground for the future," Finger said. The report indicated "there has been a forceful crackdown on the hate movement where criminal activity is taking place," Finger said. The report will be sent to the media and to law enforcement agencies to help combat anti-Semitism and racism. Meanwhile, Foxman said his group is concerned about television images of Israeli soldiers beating Palestinian protesters. Television, he said, "shows a media bite without perspective or history, and without understanding." "The way we see these pictures, it looks like (the Palestinians are) young kids acting out their anxieties and their hostilities. It isn't Berkeley and it isn't Chicago. We're dealing with another version of war," he said. Until the Israelis have someone "reasonable" to negotiate with over the fate of the Palestinians, there will continue to be a crisis, he said.


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