(JTA) – The Bay Area Rapid Transit in San Francisco accepted an ad from the Institute for Historical Review, a known Holocaust-denying group.
The ad, which shows a map of the world overlaid with the words “History Matters” and the name of the group, will run through the month of September on digital boards in two BART stations, J. The Jewish News of Northern California reported. BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost told the newspaper that as a governmental agency, BART cannot reject ads based solely on the identity of the advertiser. While it can refuse ads based on language and appearance, the new ad does not contain offensive imagery or text, Trost said. BART did require the group to remove its web address from the ad.
The $6,000 ad buy was the first ever by the Institute for Historical Review, which is considered a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It regularly publishes articles and host events contending that Jews wield immense power over the cultural life of the West, asserting that the “War on Terror” is a Zionist plot and defending the character of Nazi soldiers in World War II. Its contributors regularly question the number of Jews killed in the Holocaust, deny Hitler sought the mass extermination of Jews and reject that Jews were systematically killed in gas chambers.
Last year the Washington, DC, subway system rejected one of its ads.