FBI, Anti-Defamation League (ADL)
Federal Bureau of Investigation headquarters, on Pennsylvania Avenue sign with American flags, Washington, D.C., Dec. 29, 2016. Photo: Adobe Stock

“Surely they can avail thee naught against Allah. And surely the wrongdoers are friends of each other, and Allah is the Friend of the dutiful.”—Holy Qur’an 45:19

The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has always been the champion and the most heroic figure looming large within the collective consciousness of the Black man and woman of America, particularly since he rose to rebuild the work of his spiritual father, the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, in September of 1977. 

The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan

Make no mistake about it, we love Minister Farrakhan.  And yet we can take no accolades for our love for him. No, we cannot. For it is Minister Farrakhan who has loved us before we ever knew him. The Black people of America have in Minister Farrakhan not only a heroic strong man who loves us but also a man who embodies the unconditional love that a mother has for her children and that God has for His people. 

We love him because when we look at him and listen to him we get chills.  We are drawn to him and mesmerized by his unique ability to reach down deep within our souls and touch us at our core.  There is something special about him that we can describe and aspects that we can’t really put into words, to explain just what he means to us. 


Suffice it to say, Minister Farrakhan is anointed to give us sight in the important areas of knowledge where we had no understanding; he is anointed to heal our broken heart that White supremacy fractured as it did its wicked bidding; he is anointed to proclaim for the Black man and woman of America, a divine destiny, and to by the help of Allah (God), raise us from mental death into a new way of life!

Everywhere you go among Black people, and you hear someone utter “the Minister,” it is universally understood to refer to one man, who is beloved and cherished with fondness throughout Black America; that man is the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan.

Minister Farrakhan has suffered for more than 40 years, the slander, defamation and character assassination created by those who are best described as simply “the enemies of Black people’s liberation.”  But, thankfully, on October 16, 2023, the Minister and the Nation of Islam have chosen to fight in the courts of law, that which we have long since fought in the court of public opinion, and that is the false charge of anti-Semitism being used against us and all strong Black leaders and organizations. 

FBI COINTELPRO, Anti-Defamation League (ADL)

This charge has been weaponized in such a way as to make all who are smeared with it, a pariah in the eyes of the public, one who is to be forever banished to the margins, isolated and cut off from access to mainstream American society.

The most dubious group behind the weaponization of the charge of “anti-Semitism” is the Anti-Defamation League.  And it is this group, along with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, that Minister Farrakhan has forthrightly filed a lawsuit against.  The Nation of Islam’s October 21, 2023, press statement makes it clear:

“On October 16, 2023, which was the 28th Anniversary of the Million Man March, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam (NOI) sued the ADL, its CEO, Johnathan Greenblatt, SWC, and Rabbi Abraham Cooper of the SWC in the Federal Court of the Southern District of New York for 1st Amendment violations and for defamation.”

In my travels, I have learned that most in the Black community don’t really know who the ADL actually is.  The ADL has carefully curated for itself a benign image of a somewhat of a nebulous group unknown to “John and Jane Q Public”—that operates behind the scenes.  However, the Black folk who are familiar with them, understand them to be largely responsible for the fact that “if you say anything critical of Jews you get canceled.”

Yet even though most in Black America are not experts on the issue of anti-Semitism, all of us have some ideas as to the role that the U.S. Government, specifically the FBI, has played in the destroying of Black leaders and the destruction of Black organizations.

And I argue that if you really want to be properly introduced to the ADL, then they should be introduced as J. Edgar Hoover’s accomplices in his infamous COINTELPRO program

According to a January 17, 1968, memo from the office of J. Edgar Hoover, all FBI regional offices were instructed to collaborate with, on an ongoing basis, the Anti-Defamation League: 

“The Anti-Defamation League, 315 Lexington Avenue, New York City, maintains regional offices throughout the United States …, the Anti-Defamation League receives considerable information of interest to this Bureau and has been very cooperative in the past in referring such data to us.  You are to immediately make certain that you have established liaison with the head of the Anti-Defamation League regional offices in your territory and explain the jurisdiction and interests of this Bureau.”

Writing for the Jewish Sentinel’s January 17, 1971, edition, author J.I. Fishbein wrote:

“The Anti-Defamation League has never denied that it cooperates with the FBI on a quid pro quo basis as it does with all governmental agencies.”

Anti-Defamation League (ADL), FBI

J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI being in partnership with the ADL should alarm all throughout Black America.  Their previously hidden role in COINTELPRO is now being exposed and counters previous notions that the ADL is some sort of benign civil rights organization that advocates on behalf of the Jewish people.

We should not forget that the FBI’s hands are all over the assassination of both the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and former Nation of Islam Minister Malcolm X. Many scholars and independent researchers have well documented the FBI’s role in destroying the Black movement for freedom and independence.  But what has not been widely known until now is that one of J. Edgar Hoover’s main accomplices in COINTELPRO was the ADL.

Hoover’s nefarious COINTELPRO activities first came to the public’s attention as a result of Senator Frank Church’s now legendary Church Committee hearings purposed to investigate government corruption.  From its transcripts, we read of how Hoover used “friendly media” to smear all whom his COINTELPRO placed within its crosshairs for destruction:

Much of the Bureau’s propaganda efforts involved giving information or articles to ‘friendly’ media sources who could be relied upon not to reveal the Bureau’s interests … the Division assembled a list of ‘friendly’ news media sources—those who wrote pro-Bureau stories.

Field offices also had ‘confidential sources’ (unpaid Bureau informants) in the media, and were able to ensure their cooperation. The Bureau’s use of the news media took two different forms: placing unfavorable articles and documentaries about targeted groups, and leaking derogatory information intended to discredit individuals.” —(Church Committee Report III)

Hoover’s use of media to smear Black leaders and the members of Black organizations is just one area where the ADL conspired with the FBI.  The ADL is well known for operating its own network of spies and informants; the work product of this apparatus of theirs was supplied to Hoover’s FBI and he forwarded it on to “friendly media” sources. 

In an internal ADL memo, we see the ADL’s role in a veritable flood of anti-Nation of Islam propaganda that occurred in 1959.   This powerfully demonstrates their role in defaming Black leaders and organizations in support of Hoover’s COINTELPRO.

“There will be considerable background material on the Temple of Islam Movement and Elijah Muhammad published in the next few months.  Almost all of the big newspaper chains as well as LOOK and TIME magazine have used the files of our national fact-finding department, in recent weeks, to get background information on the movement.”

J. Edgar Hoover, FBI, ADL
F.B.I. director J. Edgar Hoover is shown in this 1967 photo. Attorney General Edward Levi was expected to tell Congress on Feb. 27, 1975, that personal files kept by the late Hoover include derogatory information about some members of Congress. Exact date and location are unknown. (AP Photo)

—(Izadore Zack, August 13, 1959, New England Regional Office of ADL)

What this means can be best understood by considering what J. Edgar Hoover listed as his purpose for COINTELPRO.  He states in his August 25, 1967, memo the following:

“The purpose of this new counterintelligence endeavor is to expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize the activities of black nationalist, hate-type organizations and groupings, their leadership, spokesmen, membership, and supporters … .

The activities of all such groups of intelligence interest to this Bureau must be followed on a continuous basis so we will be in a position to promptly take advantage of all opportunities for counterintelligence and to inspire action in instances where circumstances warrant.

The pernicious background of such groups, their duplicity, and devious maneuvers must be exposed to public scrutiny where such publicity will have a neutralizing effect. Efforts of various groups to consolidate (unify) their forces or to recruit new or youthful adherents must be frustrated.”

“No opportunity should be missed to exploit through counterintelligence techniques the organizational and personal conflicts of the leaderships of the groups and where possible an effort should be made to capitalize upon existing conflicts between competing black nationalist organizations.

When an opportunity is apparent to disrupt or neutralize black nationalist, hate type organizations through the cooperation of established local news media contacts or through such contact with sources available to the Seat of Government, in every instance careful attention must be given to the proposal to insure the targeted group is disrupted and not merely publicized … .”

For all of these activities aimed at the destruction of the movement for Black freedom and independence, the Anti-Defamation League was J. Edgar Hoover’s partner.  Yet they have never been held up to the scrutiny and accountability for the role that they have played in sabotaging the Black man and woman’s legitimate struggle for freedom and justice.

Enormous gratitude and appreciation are due to the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and his legal team for holding the ADL accountable for the harm they have inflicted on the Black people of America. 

The Minister has done this in front of audiences large and small over many years, but now this fight has entered into the arena of the courts of law and we are grateful for the opportunity to prove that truth is now and has always been on our side.

Brother Demetric Muhammad is a Memphis-based author and student minister in the Nation of Islam and a member of the Nation of Islam Research Group. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter @BrotherDemetric. Read more at www.researchminister.com.