In Washington DC Metrobus ads, pro-Israel group features photo of Hitler

Provocative, issue-oriented advertising isn’t new in Washington’s transit system. Interest groups often plaster Metro’s buses, trains and stations with head-turning messages, occasionally using language and images that some find offensive.

Now comes a photo of Adolf Hitler.

The pro-Israel group American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), angered by anti-Israel ads that recently appeared on some Metrobuses, has countered with a big ad of its own, featuring the Nazi dictator.

“Our ads are in response to the vicious Jew-hating ads … unleashed on Washington DC Metro buses last month,” AFDI says on its Web site. AFDI, based in New York, has been labeled an anti-Muslim hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a civil-rights organization that monitors extremist groups.

The “Jew-hating” ad in question, paid for by the Illinois-based group American Muslims for Palestine, appeared on 20 Metro buses from mid-March to mid-April.

The AFDI ad shows Hitler meeting with Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Palestinian nationalist and grand mufti of Jerusalem who allied himself with the Third Reich before and during World War II. Besides making propaganda broadcasts for the Nazis and recruiting European Muslims to serve in the Waffen SS, Husseini backed Hitler’s policy of exterminating Jews.

In September that year, AFDI bought ad space in four subway stations for this message: “In Any War Between the Civilized Man and the Savage, Support the Civilized Man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.”

SF Supervisors Unanimously Pass Resolution Condemning Islamophobic Bus Ads

MUNI-press-conf(SAN FRANCISCO 3/21/13) — On Tuesday, San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution condemning the content of Islamophobic advertisements placed on San Francisco buses.

Board President David Chiu sponsored the resolution, introduced at last Tuesday’s meeting. The resolution is the first of its kind in the nation, sending a clear message that San Francisco’s elected leaders stand against hate and Islamophobia.

The group underwriting the ads, the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), has sued several U.S. cities for the First Amendment right to place the ads. The group’s founder, Pamela Geller, has been designated an anti-Muslim hate extremist by the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In response, and at the request of 75 organizations and 35 leaders who spoke out following the first round of ads in August, the resolution calls for the proceeds from the offensive advertisements to fund a city-wide study on the impact of discrimination on Arab and Muslim communities.

CAIR-SFBA is an office of CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

The Asian Law Caucus was founded in 1972 as the nation’s first legal and civil rights Asian American organization. Recognizing that social, economic, political and racial inequalities continue to exist in the United States, ALC is committed to the pursuit of equality and justice for all sectors of our society, with a specific focus directed toward addressing the needs of low-income, immigrant and underserved Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The Asian Law Caucus is a member of the Asian American Center for Advancing Justice.