In an article co-authored by CAMERA Fellow Miriam Waghalter and Austin Altman, president and board member of CAMERA-supported group Scarlet Knights for Israel, the two outlined the immorality of Rutgers continuing to employ Rutgers professors Michael Chikindas and Mazen Adi.
Jasbir Puar, who has a history of anti-Semitism, including using blood libel to demonize Israel, recently made headlines again this fall. Her book, “The Right to Maim: Debility, Capacity, Disability” which was released this month, alleges that the IDF intentionally shoots Palestinians to harm them and not kill them, so that they will suffer as much as possible.
But Chikindas and Adi were only recently exposed as anti-Semites. Professor Chikindas shared anti-Semitic images on his Facebook profile, which as International Campus Director Aviva Slomich described,depicted scheming, controlling and evil Jews, evoking Der Stürmer-style imagery which is shared widely by hate and extremist groups on social media.
Chikindas’s posts reminded many of Oberlin College’s Joy Karega, who shared content which invoked similar anti-Semitic tropes, just last year.
Just days after Campus Coordinator Ben Suster visited Rutgers to provide students with moral and practical support, students were faced with another bomb of troubling news: it was discovered that an additional professor on their campus held anti-Semitic views.
One of the Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.
Since 2015, former Assad spokesman Mazen Adi has been lecturing in the political science department at Rutgers University. Working for the Assad regime, Adi repeatedly expressed support for the Syrian dictator’s war crimes during the Syrian civil war. Beyond defending a genocidal regime, Adi has also spewed antisemitic libel at the UN. In 2012, he alleged to the Security Council that “international gangs led by some Israeli religious figures are now trafficking children’s organs.”
From these scary details, it’s obvious that continuing to employ Adi and Chikindas is fundamentally wrong and harmful to students.
124th Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly 66th session: Prevention of armed conflict: draft resolution (A/66/L.57) SYRIA
Yet, despite the tireless work of the Jewish community and its allies, including that of CAMERA students Miriam and Austin, President Robert Barchi has turned a blind eye to the Jewish community, defending the employment of all three professors. Barchi has shockingly gone so far as to question The Algemeiner, the Jewish newspaper that has provided significant coverage on the disturbing sentiments of both faculty members.
At a town hall meeting sponsored by the Rutgers student government last Thursday, President Barchi addressed the ongoing controversies surrounding Chikindas, Puar, and Adi, noting that “the one thing that is common to all of these is that they were all brought forward by The Algemeiner.”
Responding to President Barchi, Slomich made the following statement:
“After Oberlin College President Krislov wrongfully defended Professor Joy Karega after she shared anti-Semitic posts on social media last year, he appropriately stepped down.
Rutgers University President Barchi has repeatedly defended anti-semitism similar to those of Karega’s by three of his own faculty members. Not only has Professor Barchi defended these shocking actions, which targets a significant portion of Rutgers students, he also has expressed anti-Semitic rhetoric of his own, making disparaging remarks about The Algemeiner, the Jewish newspaper which has provided extensive coverage of these anti-Semitic incidents.
President Barchi’s continual defense of these anti-Semitic faculty members, in addition to his own apparent prejudice, leave no other option other than Barchi stepping down immediately to allow Rutgers students the justice and safety they deserve.”
To sign the petition created by Rutgers students for action against Professor Chikindas, click here.
To sign the petition created by UN Watch for action against Professor Adi, click here.
Contributed by Lia Lands, Campus Communications for CAMERA.
CAMERA Fellow and President of Scarlet Knights for Israel Miriam Waghalter.
Rutgers University is supposed to be a safe and encouraging environment for students to learn about their passions. A large component to this goal is the faculty employed at the University. Over the past several weeks, it has been revealed that several members of the Rutgers faculty have backgrounds and hold beliefs that are antithetical to the ideals that we have as a University. Professor Michael Chikindas posted blatantly anti-Semitic and homophobic posts online and now we know that Professor Mazen Adi worked for the Assad regime in Syria. While working there, he engaged in horrific activity that should not be present at our school. We question the University’s decision to hire Adi in the first place, why both professors are still employed here and the lack of response that the University has given regarding their conducts.
But we have to ask ourselves, should an “apologist for … mass murder” be given the platform to speak freely in the context of a political science class about anti-corruption while being so blatantly a part of it? Adi has a clearly biased and unethical platform and it has no reason to be shared at our University. Furthermore, in an article from Algemeiner, a former student has claimed that Adi defended Palestinian terrorism in class as a legitimate form of “resistance” to Israeli “occupation.” Clearly, Adi’s positions cannot be part of the fabric and culture of inclusion and peace that Rutgers University promotes. The University defends its decision to hire him based off of “his expertise in international law and diplomacy, and other fields.” But is genocidal diplomacy the type of politics that we want taught in our University? Where is the line drawn?
Former Syrian diplomat and current Rutgers professor Mazen Adi, center, at a General Assembly meeting beside Bashar Ja’afari, permanent representative of Syria to the UN. Photo: UN / JC McIlwaine.
This revelation of Adi’s associations comes soon after Chikindas’s Facebook page was revealed to contain many problematic posts. After creating a petition to suspend Chikindas with over 5,000 signatures as of Nov. 9, we have yet to hear a response from the chancellor or president of the University, both of whom received an email with the petition and signatories attached over a week ago. While we appreciate the University’s statement condemning Chikindas’s posts, further action must be taken and a new statement must be made.
Freedom of speech is a right that all citizens and students have, including these professors. But while what they say and believe may not break U.S. law, they do not adhere to the culture that we here at Rutgers have worked so hard to cultivate. As students and humanitarians, we do not support mass murder and terrorism nor those who try to excuse it and justify it.
The University must recognize how immoral employing these professors as University faculty is and must to take action against them. As students, we do not deserve to be subject to people who are capable of spewing such hatred.
When I studied the history of Jews and African-Americans in America, I saw many photos of our ancestors marching together for civil rights. It was evident that they were on the right side of history. Martin Luther King, courageous civil rights leader, spoke at synagogues, believed in the self-determination of the Jewish people, and marched alongside Jews at the peak of the Civil Rights Movement.
After recent events in Charlottesville, I felt a personal obligation as a member of the Jewish minority, which makes up .02% of the population worldwide, to march for racial justice and to stand against the white supremacy and discrimination that is engrained in society. My grandfather was one of the Nazis’s victims when white supremacists committed a gruesome genocide against the Jews. My grandmother was born and raised in a black and Jewish neighborhood in Brownsville, Brooklyn.
A Zioness Movement graphic.
When Nazis and Confederates recently chanted “Jews will not replace us”, this symbolized the evils of white supremacy trying to eradicate my grandfather’s personal identity, heritage, and values during the Holocaust, along with 12 million other victims. It was also a direct dismissal and attack on my grandmother’s neighborhood, kin, and childhood experiences. For these reasons, I attended the Post-Yom Kippur March for Racial Justice on October 1st, as well as Brooklyn College President Michelle Anderson’s campaign “Stand Against Hate” which addressed the interconnectedness between racism against African Americans and anti-Semitism against Jews on October 19th.
Justice means standing with minorities struggling for equal opportunities to pursue happiness and to no longer be systematically and institutionally targeted for demise. Additionally, standing up for Zionism, the Jewish national liberation movement for self-determination in Israel and preventing another anti-Semitic genocide. TaNahesi Coates’s Between the World and Me opened my eyes to the institutionalized racism against African-Americans in the United States and to the difficulty of growing up in a black body living in a white world.
In another of Coates’s books, The Case for Reparations, he referred to Israel as the model for reparations. As a Jew, I resonated even more with national black liberation movements because of the institutionalized and systemic anti-Semitism against Jews perpetrated throughout history.
My friend Natalie, who is a CAMERA Fellow herself at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and I marched with Zioness: a movement that stands for justice and fights against all forms of oppression. We stood against the marginalization, disempowerment, and demonization of Jews, people of color and other minorities. However, being both a progressive and an advocate of Zionism, the self-determination of the Jewish people, I felt my intersectional identities collide.
A male marshal wearing orange traffic control stripes came out from the tent to demand that my sign be removed. Shortly after that, a woman approached me with the marshal to demand that I put down my Zioness sign. My sign represented the movement against oppression as it had an intersection of an African-American woman wearing a Jewish Star. As a result, my hands clamped, chills rolled down my spine and my heart raced.
Other marchers try to cover up Zioness signs. [Photo: Zioness Movement Facebook page]
According to the marshals, there were too many Zioness signs in the same area and they did not want them appearing in photographs. However, as we collectively marched together against hate, there were many groups holding up other signs with messages such as “Black Lives Matter” and “Intersectional Feminism.” The act of holding Jews to a different standard than other minority groups is anti-Semitic. For me, the experience of being singled out reaffirmed the need for a strong Zionist movement. Jews should never be targeted again and subjected to anti-Semitic double standards.
However, I stood resisting racism with my fist in the air, my jacket representing the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America, along with my Zioness sign protesting racial injustice
alongside my African American brothers and sisters. I did this because who were the March for
Racial Justice Organizers to question my identity? Who is anyone to question my identity? I
identify as progressive Zionist and nobody can take that away from me!
On October 19th, Reform Rabbi Michael Lerner spoke at Brooklyn College to Stand Against Hate with President Michelle Anderson. During the talk, Rabbi Lerner said that a flaw in liberalism is viewing people who hold different opinions from one’s own through an “Us vs. Them” lens. I still have hope that Zionism, kindness, and the truth will prevail.
CAMERA on Campus is horrified by Rutgers Department of Food Science Professor Michael Chikindas’s anti-Semitic Facebook posts, discovered this week. The university is “reviewing this matter to determine if actions taken in the context of his role as a faculty member at Rutgers may have violated that policy.”
In response, International Campus Director for CAMERA Aviva Slomich released the following statement:
“Professor Chikindas’s posts depict scheming, controlling and evil Jews, evoking Der Stürmer-style antisemitic imagery which is shared widely by hate and extremist groups on social media.
We are working with our CAMERA Fellow and CAMERA-supported group Scarlet Knights for Israel at Rutgers to formulate an appropriate on-campus response.
CAMERA on Campus calls on the Rutgers administration to take the necessary actions to ensure that university policy is upheld.”
Campus Coordinator Ben Suster met with CAMERA-supported group Scarlet Knights for Israel and CAMERA Fellow Miriam Waghalter to provide moral and practical support on the evening of Thursday, October 26th at Rutgers.
Screenshots obtained by pro-Israel blog Israellycool of the professor’s posts are seen below.
Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.
Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.
Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.
Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.
In a horrifying editorial cartoon published online and in print in The Daily Californian, UC Berkeley’s student-run campus paper, Alan Dershowitz, a Jewish American supporter of Israel, was vilified using classic anti-Semitic tropes and imagery. The cartoon was published in the paper just days after Alan Dershowitz spoke to an audience of students in the Boalt Auditorium on campus.
In response, Aviva Slomich, International Campus Director for CAMERA issued the following statement:
“The editorial cartoon published in The Daily Californian portrays Alan Dershowitz, a Jewish American, as a grotesque, conniving and sinister creature who crushes a person holding a Palestinian flag while hiding his complicity with the Israeli murder of an innocent man. Such imagery evokes toxic narratives about Jewish malevolence and, by suggesting that non-Israeli Jews are morally responsible for the alleged actions of Israel, arguably falls within the Working Definition of Antisemitism adopted by the US State Department.
We call upon the The Daily Californian to retract the cartoon, immediately issue an apology, and re-evaluate their editorial and professional standards.”
A print version of the cartoon that appeared in The Daily Californian [Photo: Bears for Israel Facebook page].
“This cartoon was published in the Daily Californian, a few days after Alan Dershowitz spoke to an audience of students in the Boalt Auditorium. It uses classic anti-Semitic tropes and imagery. This rhetoric and imagery is nowhere more common than in Nazi propaganda used by the Third Reich.
We are strong supporters of productive political discourse through campus media, but this is not productive. To a Jewish student on this campus, seeing this cartoon in the DailyCal is a reminder that we are not always welcome in the spaces we call home. It is terrifying that the cartoonist and the editors did not do their due diligence and research to know about the pervasive use of this rhetoric by the Nazi propaganda machine.
The editorial team should ask themselves why they felt it was acceptable to portray a Jewish person – who is not even Israeli – with an arachnoid body. This should have rung some alarm bells in someone’s mind, but it apparently did not. The fact that our campus newspaper printed this cartoon is deeply disturbing, traumatizing, and disrespectful to the Jewish students at this school.
We will be addressing this cartoon in a longer statement and taking steps to work with the administration and the Daily Cal to remedy this.”
CAMERA on Campus staff are working to assist the students on the ground at UC Berkeley.
The United States is unrecognizable. America’s reality is now that of a nation afflicted with violent protests and rabid discrimination. Charlottesville, Virginia exposed itself as a cesspool for neo-Nazis and the Klu Klux Klan. Graphic images of white men and women carrying lit tiki torches and swastika flags flooded across the internet along with videos in which these villains verbally express their hate. One of them is a new mother, claiming that the Jews “are a poison and need to be eradicated.”
The fight to combat hatred and bigotry towards the Jewish people is re-emerging across the country and across college campuses.
In 2017, Jewish people find themselves residing in a nation that once fought to eliminate the world of such poison just seven decades ago — yet the poison lingers. The less than 100,000 remaining Holocaust survivors in America assumed the evil would not be offered the opportunity to re-emerge.
The Jewish community continues to be targeted — even at San Diego State.
All of the following tweets have since been deleted.
Halima Eid, a recent psychology graduate from SDSU, and former Associated Students representativeand Events Coordinator for Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), was responsible for writing a series of now deleted anti-Semitic tweets — which have resurfaced.
In these tweets, Eid encouraged people to kill themselves, made homophobic remarks, denied the existence of the Holocaust, and supported Adolf Hitler — all while emphasizing her desire to murder those in support of the self-determination of the Jewish people.
Eid’s Twitter account has since been deleted.
The significance that lies within these statements is the platform they stood on — a public social media account. Social media has become the knife held in the hands of anti-Semites
who use it to penetrate wounds into innocent Jews and Zionists.
Eid purposely took to Twitter to advocate for violence towards a marginalized group of people. Her statements, which now appear to be deleted, were kept online for years.
She even goes far enough to announce her support for Hamas, a widely recognized terror organization.
Eid’s written declarations were retweeted and favorited by users who condone her attitudes towards supporters of the Jewish state. Her tweets could be viewed as a call to action — a call to eradicate the world of those who support Israel.
Perhaps the most troubling aspect of these posts is one in which she suggests Zionists to commit suicide. Eid now has a degree in psychology.
On February 11, 2017, SJP posted on Facebook notifying its followers of a series of tweets posted by a member of their organization years prior to the start of their membership. The post claimed that “the tweets were made against the Jewish and LGBTQ community and were extremely bigoted, racist, and offensive in nature. Our organization stands unequivocally against anti-Semitism, homophobia, and all forms of bigotry and racism.” The member was said to have resigned from their position.
While it is not known that these tweets belonged to Eid’s account, the organization didn’t mention the violence promoted in the tweets towards Zionists.
As the organization’s events coordinator, Eid had influence in the organization.
That the organization ignored Eid’s tweets for so long comes as no surprise considering the organization’s history with anti-Semitic criticism of the Zionist cause.
Eid is no longer enrolled at the university having graduated in the spring. However, she is an alumna and part of an anti-Semitic history.
Although a resolution to combat anti-Semitism was passed by Associated Students in the spring, it does not excuse the university’s history of hatred and abuse towards Jewish students and is not to be forgotten. Anti-Semitism in any from is reprehensible. Anti-Semitism has neither evolved nor decreased and continues to play a role in the SDSU community.
While the United States must condemn all forms of bigotry, the work must begin at the local level.
Halima Eid voted against the resolution to condemn anti-Semitism at San Diego State.
Halima Eid and Students for Justice in Palestine did not return Talia Raoufpur’s request for a comment.
Fleeing the crisis in Venezuela, 26 Jews immigrated to Israel this week, a continuation of a mass exodus of Jews from the South American country. Venezuela has been dominated by protests, some violent, against the current president Nicolas Maduro, and the former long-time leader of the country, Hugo Chavez, who died in 2013.
26 Jews from Venezuela arrive in Israel (@Behind_News)
Anti-Semitic language was often used by the former President to deflect from criticism of the country’s financial situation. This anti-Semitism convinced many Jews to flee the country but the recent crisis has continued the trend. The majority of Jews who flee Venezuela end up moving to either Israel or the American state of Florida. The current Jewish population of the South American country is now just 9,000, compared to 25,000 in 1999.
In more concerning rhetoric, in May, the current president Maduro, compared those who are protesting against his far-left government’s officials to the treatment of Jews under the Nazis. Maduro said, “We don’t carry the yellow Star of David, we carry red hearts that are filled with desire to fight for human dignity. And we are going to defeat them, these 21st century Nazis”.
Upon arriving in Israel, Venezuelan Jew Michal Levy told the Jerusalem Post, “The situation is very hard, it’s hard to get basic things like bread and flour”. Michal also stated that she had been scared to leave the house due to riots and kidnappings.
With the situation in Venezuela showing no signs of changing for the better, it would not be surprising to see more Jews leave the South American country in the future.
The Palestine Expo was advertised as a cultural event and a family affair. So I went to the QEII Conference Centre to engage with the atmosphere with my wife and youngest son. I knew that the content of the speeches would be full of hate, so rather than listen to hours of anti-Israeli rhetoric, I wanted to enjoy the exhibits and activities. Most of all I looked forward to the food. Myself, my wife, and my eleven-year-old child were evicted half way through our lunch. What we suffered was unacceptable discrimination. Here is the report:
The Palestine Expo event
We had booked a family ticket over both days at the Palestine Expo. I took my youngest on the first day. The intent was to take the eldest on Sunday, because on Saturday she was at the London Pride event. The tickets were being advertised with a huge discount. I have already posted my thoughts on the programme for the event. I hadn’t commented or opposed the idea of a cultural festival. Once the programme was released I criticised the clear political element.
There are many cultural and historical elements that could have been included to engage with the Arab association with the land. A look at life during Ottoman times. The Islamic conquest and empire. The waves of Migrants over the past three hundred years, or the nomadic lifestyle of Bedouin. The Egyptian conquest of 1831-1833 is an interesting one. A battle over ‘Greater Syria’ between the Egyptians and the Ottomans that gave ‘Palestine’ the ‘zero acknowledgement’ that its non-existent 19th century status fully deserved. All these are fascinating historically accurate and culturally significant areas, that would never be represented at an event such as this. The only discussion on show was anti-Israel venom, the actual concept of ‘Palestine’ or ‘Palestinians’ didn’t figure at all. The Palestine at this event, was one created merely to de-legitimise Israel.
The circle of hate
I had my family with me, and to be honest, I had little intention of suffering the talks. I looked at the list of speakers and I have seen all these circus performers before. In fact, so confident am I of this now, I challenge Pappe or Peled or Barkan to allow me to write the speech for their next event. I am sure I will create ‘pitch perfect’ diatribe, fully in tune with the message they wish to deliver. Ben White would be more troublesome. Not that I couldn’t write it, but simply I wouldn’t want to make the effort of finding 200 irrelevant statistics, that he uses to deflect the attention of the audience with.
The groups behind the ‘expo’, those ‘supporting’ the political side of this event are also all known to me. There is the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC). A group that is riddled with those who believe Jews are evil, rule the world and didn’t actually suffer a Holocaust at all. The Palestine Return Centre, that ran the event that saw Gerald Kaufman suggest ‘Jewish money‘ control’s the UK government. Or the Queen Mary University, where I saw Jewish students with a question stand accused of being ‘paid’ and controlled by the Israeli embassy.
How about the P21 Gallery, a regular venue for anti-Israel activism, that saw Milo Peled blame Zionist Jews for deliberately creating Islamophobia and is used to having its room full of hard-core antisemites. The UCLU, that saw an intimidating attack on its own Jewish students last year. How about Friends of Al Aqsa, that believes Jews should be subordinate. Have I mentioned SOAS yet? I have been living inside this venomous pit for a while now. I recognise the poison.
So I chose not to engage with this hatred. I wanted to enjoy the ‘cultural’ aspect. I spent years living and working with real Palestinians. Not the fake wannabee ‘solidarity type’, but those who live in Ramallah, Jericho and Gaza. Those Arabs and the Israelis are neighbours. I lived nineteen years in the Middle East. Why would I not want to go to this event. Why should I not feel at home?
I walked around the upper floors, and because of the time, I went upstairs to eat. This action was to see me thrown out.
The vast majority of the crowd seemed Muslim. I would guess the split was 80/20. Perhaps even higher. The pool of white British anti-Israel activists is limited, so at an event like this they get swamped. The dining area was full, and there was a logistical issue with the kitchen. It was taking a long time to bring food to some of the stalls.
I was spotted by members of a local anti-Israel group ‘London Palestine Action’. I saw an activist called ‘Andrew Nelis’ before he saw me. I then saw Jackie Walker enter the room and start talking to him. They began looking over in my direction. Then Tony Greenstein showed up. I am never confrontational, never impolite. I walked over to say yes ‘this is me’. If they sought engagement. I am always willing to talk. Greenstein didn’t seem to believe I was there for the food. So I went to sit back down.
Jackie Walker chose to come to the table I was sitting at. Greenstein followed. Walker then began to tell the other two attendees already present at the table (see image) how I call events like this ‘hate fests’. I was polite, on topic and suggested we meet up for coffee if she wanted a proper discussion. I responded nicely to everything was said. I was there with my family and what I wanted to do was to relax.
I wasn’t going to be allowed to though. A few months ago Walker shared an image of me online, telling people to report me when spotted. Such is the life of being an independent member of the press that these people do not like. A few minutes passed and Andrew Nelis returned. Security was with him. I am asked to leave. I ask on what grounds – none given. “I want to know” I respond. “write a letter” is what I am told.
This was clearly wrong. I am sitting eating lunch at a cultural event in a public building, I have several activists who claim to be upholders of ‘free speech’ come to the table and I am evicted. I looked straight at Jackie Walker who said clearly “I don’t agree with this”. I think for a split second she understood it looked bad. Then, as I turned away to leave I suddenly I heard her shout ‘How dare you’ at me ‘and ‘Liar’. I am not sure whether she spied a camera, but the comment was entirely out of context with what had occurred. Did she really want to create an image of me being evicted after having said something unacceptable? A viral video for her to use? Jackie, I know you will read this – so let us be clear – you did yourself no favours, but the offer for coffee is always open. I am always willing to point out where you have gone so badly wrong.
I left in accordance with the requests of the security team. I told them I was a member of the press, who was being evicted on discriminatory grounds. They apologised, but insisted on politely doing the job they had been instructed to do. I behaved as I always do. I have no idea why I was evicted and I have no intention of accepting this type of discriminatory behaviour.
The aftermath and celebration
What then, do self declared humanitarians do when someone is evicted on discriminatory grounds? They celebrate of course. This in a blog from Greenstein:
During lunch I and others spotted one David Collier, a Zionist snoop who makes a profession out of defaming activists and groups as ‘anti-Semitic’. He came up when he spotted me all friendly. I asked him how he was enjoying the ‘Jewish hate fest’ that he and his compatriots had called Palestine Expo 2017. He denied this and resumed his lunch, however we called for the security to evict him when he did. His wife was most put out at this attack on freedom of speech, which is rich coming from those whose whole life is spent trying to suppress Palestinian freedom of speech. Given the anti-Zionists are never allowed in Zionist functions and when they are spotted are usually assaulted Mr Collier should be grateful that we didn’t behave like his friends.
An admission I did nothing wrong. Apparently I should be thankful I was not assaulted.
This ‘real time’ post from activist Barry Ackerman:
This a thread after a comment from activist Elleane Green:
Elleanne admits to helping ‘report and identify me’. Nelis is clearly proud. Sandra Watfa is the face of InMinds and has previously used the hashtag ‘jewnitedstatesofamerica’. But on that thread is also a comment from a sitting member of the House of Lords, Jenny Tonge. I witnessed and reported on the event that was to lead to Tonge’s resignation from the Lib-Dems, so it is possible Tonge does not think highly of me, but she is still a sitting member of the House of Lords. She is congratulating a fascist style eviction of a person who has done no wrong. Truly disgraceful, from someone who should inherently seek to protect our freedoms, not cheer on those that seek to destroy them.
Not the only one
I later found out I was not the only Zionist Jew evicted. Someone named Jason was inside the event, had attended speeches and had wandered around unhindered *until* he wore a Jewish head covering. Ten minutes later, he was evicted:
There is absolutely no excuse for allowing this type of hatred to go ahead in Central London. A celebration of the marriage between Islamists who refuse to accept a self-defining Jewish presence, Marxists who are inevitably at war with the self-determination of Jews, and hard-core antisemites, who just do not like Jews however they are defined.
Nor is there any way people should be evicted from these events on discriminatory grounds.
The videos of the event speeches are flowing freely on social media, thousands attended the event, and the hatred of Israel and Jews has just received a government assisted boost in the arm. We all know the hate is there. We all know there is a network of groups who have issues with Jews. What on earth was the reasoning behind allowing them to takeover a public building such as the QEII in London?
Our Jewish children are no longer welcome at the heart of the Democratic Estate in a building owned by Her Majesty’s Government. Why? Because the people inside do not want them there. No further excuse necessary. Just a month after Hezbollah flags were being waved in Oxford Street, Jew hate was allowed a weekend of celebration at the QEII. There is perhaps something symbolic in this, From Oxford Street to Parliament Square. The Jew hating flags have moved ever closer to the UK Parliament.
This article was contributed by David Collier and was originally published at david-collier.com.
Jewish pride flag, seen here at Tel Aviv Pride Parade (Becky Brothman)
JVP defended the decision to remove the Jewish women, claiming that by attending the march with a flag sporting the Star of David, was showing support for Zionism, “which was one of the ideologies that march organizers had disavowed”, and the appearance of it “triggered” attendees.
Firstly, to claim that a flag displaying the Star of David means you are supporting the actions of the Israeli government, and therefore warrants a participant to be kicked out the parade is ludicrous. The Star of David has been used as a symbol to represent the Jewish community for over 800 years, long before the State of Israel, and more recently, was used as a way of identifying Jews during the Holocaust, again, before the State of Israel. To use the presence of the Star of David as an excuse to kick out Jewish women, is simply anti-Semitic.
Secondly, when the three Jewish women arrived at the march, they were questioned by organizers about their support for Israel. This marks a continuation of a worrying trend where Jews are singled out and questioned on their support for Israel, first highlighted when American-Jewish reggae singer Matisyahu was told to issue a statement regarding his support for the plight of Palestinians in order to be allowed to perform at a music festival in Spain. This is anti-Semitism. Imagine if openly visible Muslims were questioned about their views on ISIS when attending the Parade? There would be outrage…
Dyke March in Chicago (Chicagoist)
JVP therefore has jumped to defend an incident of blatant anti-Semitism, showing exactly the type of organization they are. Though we shouldn’t be surprised, JVP this year invited Rasmea Odeh as their guest of honor at their National Membership Meeting. Odeh is a convicted terrorist who murdered two Israeli college students in 1969 by planting a bomb in a supermarket in Jerusalem.
Jewish Voice For Peace claims to be an organization which is “dedicated to justice” and is in “opposition to all forms of bigotry, including antisemitism”. If that were the case, JVP would not be defending blatant anti-Semitism.
Last week, two Jewish students at the University of Western Ontario were blocked on Twitter for challenging a Huron professor expressing their support for BDS on Twitter. Huron professor Wendy Russell retweeted a post by the handle @BDSmovement calling Gaza an ‘open air prison’.
Huron Professor Wendy Russell endorses the BDS Movement
Jewish students then challenged her effective endorsement of BDS, expressing their concerns that BDS is at its core anti-Semitic. Rather than debate or discuss the issue at hand, the professor blocked the two Jewish students in less than two hours, without responding to the concerns raised.
Jewish students challenge the professor on her endorsement
Professor Russell reacts by blocking the Jewish students
CAMERA on Campus Statement:
It is painful for Jewish students who support Israel to see college professors endorsing the BDS campaign. Rather than engaging with the Jewish students who expressed concern over Dr. Russell’s decision to side with the hateful campaign, Dr. Russell chose to block these concerned Jewish students on Twitter, therefore shutting down any dialogue.
Universities are supposed to be a place where ideas are debated and challenged, yet shutting down debate and dialogue has been a repeated tactic of the BDS Movement and its supporters on campus.
We call on UWO to take action to ensure that the concerns raised by these students are taken seriously.
Contributed by CAMERA Intern Daniel Kosky, with files from UWO student Ryan Greenspoon.