The Anti-Defamation League described a plan by evangelical pastors in Kansas to build a replica of the Western Wall as part of an anti-abortion shrine as “an outrageous affront to the Jewish people.”
The International Pro-Life Memorial and National Life Center is being planned by anti-abortion activists in Wichita, which is known for its anti-abortion activism, the Forward reported.
The model of the Western Wall will be a full-size, exact replica. The activists view the Western Wall as the embodiment of remembering Jewish suffering during the Holocaust and now want the wall to memorialize some 60 million aborted fetuses.
The wall replica will be fronted by 60 simple white crosses, each representing 1 million aborted fetuses, according to the center’s website.
A website for the center says the wall, which is referred to by another of its names, the Wailing Wall, will be “a place of repentance, mediation, and healing.”
“The International Pro-life Center will be a national and international focal point to connect and integrate a variety of services which have the goal of promoting, bring healing, and enhancing human life,” the website introduction’s says.
The ADL called the proposed center and a perversion of Judaism’s holiest site.
“Over the years we have seen a number of anti-abortion groups compare abortion to the Holocaust, but this takes the misuse of Jewish symbolism and history to another level,” Abraham Foxman, ADL’s national director, said in a statement issued Monday. “The Western Wall, this monumental symbol of Jewish grief and redemption is being co-opted and distorted to promote an anti-abortion agenda and message. “Members of the pro-life movement are entitled to their opinions, but we wish they would not express them at the expense of Judaism’s holiest site and the Holocaust.”