Washington, DC | www.adc.org | March 21, 2016 – The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is disappointed (although not surprised) that Presidential candidate Donald Trump has selected a proven sectarian propagandist to be his foreign policy advisor. Thus far, Trump has taken almost every opportunity to create division among Americans. Because of this, his selection of Dr. Walid Phares as one of his five foreign policy advisors is consistent with his political platform of promoting bigotry and sectarianism. It is deeply disappointing nonetheless.
A well-known sectarian propagandist and war criminal, Dr. Phares served as a high ranking political official in the “Lebanese Front,” a sectarian religious militia responsible for massacres during Lebanon’s brutal, 15-year civil war. Dr. Phares was also part of the “Guardians of Cedar,” a militia group with the slogan “Kill a Palestinian and you shall enter Heaven.” Dr. Phares joined Fox News in 2007, and often promotes Islamophobia under the guise of being a counter terrorism expert.
The decision to select a proven anti-Muslim propagandist as his foreign policy advisor is particularly troubling in light of Donald Trump’s escalating anti-Muslim rhetoric. After advocating for the banning of Muslims from entering the U.S., there have been a record number of hate crimes, and incidents of discrimination targeting Arabs, Muslims and those to be perceived to be Arab or Muslim. Trump’s campaign of bigotry and xenophobia has already attracted the support of many domestic hate groups, and the selection of Dr. Phares broadens the Trump campaign’s appeal to include international sectarianism as well. ADC called on Trump to drop out of the race in December 2015, and we renew that call today.