By Greg Bluestein, Associated Press Writer – 22 mins ago
ATLANTA – Former President Jimmy Carter is offering the Jewish community an apology for any of his "words and deeds" that may have upset them.
Carter writes in an open letter to the Jewish community this week that he hopes the new year will bring peace between Israel and its neighbors. He says "we must not permit criticisms for improvement to stigmatize Israel."
He adds: "I offer an Al Het for any words or deeds of mine that may have done so."
Al Het is a prayer said on Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement. It signifies a plea for forgiveness.
Carter has been criticized by some in the Jewish community who contend his 2006 book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid" unfairly compared Israeli treatment of Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza to the legalized racial oppression that once existed in South Africa.