"While there is no evidence to suggest that anti-Semitism was a motive for the attacks, we are deeply concerned about the strain of anti-Semitism running through some of the extreme factions of the [anti-abortion] movement," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL national director.
"They make ludicrous claims that Jewish doctors control the practice and industry of abortion, often comparing them to Nazi war criminals," he continued, citing Human Life International as "inordinately preoccupied with Jews."
According to the ADL, five days after Slepian's murder, an anonymous caller threatened another Buffalo-area obstetrician. The caller is believed to have previously put a "wanted poster" of Slepian, with his face crossed out and the words "Jew" and "killer" written across it, in a local police station's washroom.
According to the Associated Press, a 44-year-old Vermont man, James Charles Kopp, was being sought as a material witness in the case; a material witness is not a suspect, but rather someone who is believed to have information that would aid the investigation.
In addition, authorities have released a sketch of another man who is wanted for questioning as well.
ADL officials said while most of the anti-abortion movement "decries bigotry and violence," an ADL investigation revealed some of them, and a few individuals, "single out Jewish doctors who perform the procedure, or describe Jews as controlling the abortion `industry.'"
Officials from ADL cited Father Paul Marx, founder of Human Life International, as an example. Marx wrote in 1977: "…it is a strange thing how many leaders of the abortion movement are Jewish."
In a 1993 article in the organization's newsletter, he wrote: "Today, certain members of this people whose ancient religion and culture managed to survive Auschwitz and Buchenwald are presiding over the greatest Holocaust in the history of the world. American Jews have been leaders in establishing and defending the efficient destruction of more than 30 million preborn children in this country…Why are the victims of one Holocaust perpetrating another?"
When a Brookline, Mass. clinic was targeted in 1994, a clinic administrator said that bomb threats and hate mail had been received, the latter focusing "…on killing `Jew doctors.' It said things like `Hitler was right.' There were really grisly drawings," the ADL reported.
Analogies between the Holocaust and abortion are widespread in many anti-abortion groups' material, the ADL said, including showing photos of Holocaust victims alongside aborted fetuses.
The anti-Semitic Posse Comitatus reported Slepian's death on its Web site, the ADL noted, writing: "Not much needs to be said. The justice in the putting to DEATH of this jewish [sic] abortionist says it all…You can be sure that it is a White Man, one of His True Chosen, that is exacting YHVH's vengeance upon these murdering vipers. I Pray that other True Israelite Warriors across this land continue to rid our country of these murdering bastards!"
The Oslo-based hate Web site Holy War calls abortion "the one and only Holocaust ever," and exhorts readers to "Stop the `racial Jewish' abortion industry that cost [sic] the life of 50 million human beings every year!"