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Battle Over Ground Zero Intensifies

While many, including President George W. Bush, gave lip service to religious tolerance in the wake of 9/11, a backlash against Islam is mounting amid growing opposition to plans to include a mosque in the reconstruction around Ground Zero in New York City. And now, unexpectedly, the Anti-Defamation League has weighed in against the mosque. –JCL

The New York Times:

An influential Jewish organization on Friday announced its opposition to a proposed Islamic center and mosque two blocks north of ground zero in Lower Manhattan, intensifying a fierce national debate about the limits of religious freedom and the meaning of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

The decision by the group, the Anti-Defamation League, touched off angry reactions from a range of religious groups, which argued that the country would show its tolerance and values by welcoming the center near the site where radical Muslims killed about 2,750 people.

But the unexpected move by the ADL, a mainstream group that has denounced what it saw as bigoted attacks on plans for the Muslim center, could well be a turning point in the battle over the project.

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