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Justice Department sent white nationalist content to immigration court employees: report

The Hill logo The Hill 8/22/2019 Marina Pitofsky
Justice Department sent white nationalist content to immigration court employees: report © iStock Justice Department sent white nationalist content to immigration court employees: report

An immigration judges union alleged that the Justice Department reportedly sent an email to all immigration court employees that included a link to an article from a white nationalist website that "directly attacks sitting immigration judges with racial and ethnically tinged slurs," Buzzfeed reported Thursday.

The National Association of Immigration Judges alleged that the Justice Department's Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) sent court employees a link to an article from VDare, a white nationalist website, in its morning news briefing Monday that included anti-Semitic references to judges.

The emails are sent to court employees on weekdays, and they include links to news articles about immigration. The blog post in question includes reporting about the Justice Department taking steps to decertify the immigration judge's union, and it allegedly includes pictures of some judges with the label "Kritarch" before their names, an anti-Semitic slur.

"The post features links and content that directly attacks sitting immigration judges with racial and ethnically tinged slurs and the label 'Kritarch.' The reference to Kritarch in a negative tone is deeply offensive and Anti-Semitic," union chief Ashley Tabaddor wrote in a Thursday letter to James McHenry, the director of the EOIR.

"VDare's use of the term in a pejorative manner casts Jewish history in a negative light as an Anti-Semitic trope of Jews seeking power and control," she continued.

Tabaddor demanded that McHenry take immediate action for the shared post, withdrawing the email and issuing an apology, Buzzfeed reported. She also called on the EOIR to take "all appropriate safety and security measures."

"Publication and dissemination of a white supremacist, anti-semitic website throughout the EOIR is antithetical to the goals and ideals of the Department of Justice," Tabbaddor wrote.

A former senior DOJ official, who was not named, told Buzzfeed that the email is "generated by a third-party vendor that utilizes keyword searches to produce news clippings for staff. It is not reviewed or approved by staff before it is transmitted."

The Hill has reached out to the Department of Justice for comment.

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