European rabbis say they're lobbying Apple Inc. to pull a mobile app version of the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion," a notorious anti-Semitic forgery.
The Conference of European Rabbis, which represents Orthodox Jewish congregations across the continent, says it wants the iPhone manufacturer to stop selling an Arabic-language version of the Protocols being offered through its iTunes service.
The Protocols purport to lift the lid on a secret Jewish conspiracy to take over the world and have long been a staple of anti-Semitic rhetoric. The writings have been thoroughly debunked but the text endures as a staple of anti-Semitic rhetoric among neo-Nazis and other anti-Jewish extremists..
"'The Protocols of the Elders of Zion' can and should be available for academics to study in its proper context, (but) to disseminate such hateful invective as a mobile app is dangerous and inexcusable," conference president Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt said in a statement.
The app, produced by a company known as the Innovation Group, does include a disclaimer that "The Protocols" has been described as a forgery, but Goldschmidt said in a telephone interview that it was being sold for 99 cents a download in a context which made it clear that it was aimed at "propagating hatred."
Israel's minister of public diplomacy, Yuli Edelstein, said Apple shouldn't allow the material on iTunes.
"They wouldn't allow pedophilia and pornography on their networks," he told The Associated Press. "They shouldn't allow xenophobia, anti-Semitism or racism."
Goldschmidt said he didn't know of any other versions of "The Protocols" on iTunes. Apple did not return repeated messages seeking comment.