The divestment campaign demonizes Israel by assertions that Israel is the preeminent modern example of a "racist" and "apartheid" state, and has become one of the most coordinated anti-Israel campaigns on college and university campuses around the country.
Although dozens of professors and hundreds of students have signed on to divestment petitions on many campuses, the divestment campaign's arguments have not been persuasive to mainstream Americans and the overall results have not been successful. To date, no college or university has withdrawn its investments in companies that do business in Israel. Nevertheless, the divestment campaign remains one of the most organized sources of anti-Israel activity, especially on campus.
Several campus-based divestment campaigns have been active across the county, including the following:
On February 4, 2004, the New York University Students for Justice in Palestine launched a campaign calling on NYU to divest from all companies that conduct business in Israel or the Occupied Territories, "until the state of Israel complies with international law and ends human rights abuses."
That same month, the Wesleyan Students for a Free Palestine, the Middle East Crisis Committee and Al-Awda sponsored a conference called "Activism 102" at Wesleyan University in Connecticut. Among the sessions at the event were strategies for divestment and boycotts. Anti-Semitic articles and fake dollar bills bearing swastikas were distributed at the program and Web sites promoting Palestinian terror attacks were endorsed.
Anti-Israel student activists and speakers from around the United States and abroad converged on Duke University in North Carolina on October 15-17, 2004, for the fourth National Student Conference of the Palestine Solidarity Movement. Participants portrayed Israel as a “racist” and “apartheid” state and refused to condemn suicide bombing. Several speakers also made comments expanding upon their unwillingness to condemn terrorism, alleging Israeli control of U.S. media and comparing Israel to apartheid South Africa.