May 14, 2002
On campuses across the country, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has led to demonstrations and activism by pro-Palestinian groups fueled by hatred of Israel and Jews.
The protests - including rallies, meetings and letter-writing campaigns - devolve from legitimate criticism of Israel into ugly, hateful attacks against Jews and the Jewish State. In some cases, the protest efforts have led to on-campus demonstrations where outright anti-Semitism rules the day. In several instances pro-Palestinian activists have embraced Nazi imagery such as swastikas and the use of other anti-Semitic images and stereotypes.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) through its National and 30 Regional Offices has been proactive in working with campus groups, administrators and faculty to identify and expose hatred on the college campus and to help distinguish between legitimate expressions of criticism of Israel and blatant anti-Semitism.
The following is a summary of recent anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incidents on the university campus.
- May 14 - At the University of California - Irvine, an anti-Israel demonstration featured the display of mock “body bags” of Palestinians “murdered” by the Israeli army.
- May 7 - Jewish students, faculty and campus visitors were verbally assaulted and threatened following a pro-Israel rally organized by Hillel members at San Francisco State University. A group of pro-Palestinian counter-demonstrators allegedly hurled epithets at a few dozen organizers, screaming slogans such as "Go back to Russia" and "Hitler did not finish the job." In response to the incident, the Anti-Defamation League has been in contact with the SFSU President Robert A. Corrigan with recommendations to respond to the incident and address issues of bias and anti-Semitism on campus. President Corrigan has assured ADL and the wider community that a full investigation is underway, and that any students involved in the episode could face disciplinary measures, including expulsion, or prosecution if the actions involve criminal violations. The university has requested that the District Attorney assign a member of the hate crime unit to aid in the investigation.
- May 7 - The Muslim Student Association at UC - San Diego distributed fliers on campus titled, "The Jenin Massacre." At the same time, fliers appeared on campus with an anti-Semitic diatribe written by the right-wing extremist and former Klansman David Duke.
- May 2 - Following the rejection of a divestment resolution before the UC - Berkeley student government, a group of 500 protesters gathered to object to the University administration's suspension of the Students for Justice in Palestine group.
- May 1 - At the University of Maryland - College Park, students representing the Muslim Students Association and Organization of Arab Students set up a mock checkpoint and labeled a courtyard "Occupied Territory." At the checkpoint, signs were hanging from a table indicating one direction for Israelis and another for Palestinians. One student repeatedly read through a list of U.N. resolutions that Israel had allegedly violated over a microphone throughout the day.
- April 29 - May 3 - "LOCKED IN: A Week of Education About Palestine," a series organized and sponsored by Ohio's Oberlin College Students for a Free Palestine (SFP), will be featuring Palestinian movies, guest lectures and a planned introduction to the divestment from Israel campaign, during the week-long series of events.
April 28 - A rally held on the campus of Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, featured a highly anti-Semitic Christian Patriot group condemning Israel and U.S. foreign policy. We Hold These Truths, as the group is known, is based in Scottsdale, Arizona and advocates an end to U.S. support for Israel.
- April 25 - An anti-Israel demonstration at Southern Connecticut State University was staged to protest an on-campus appearance of former Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak. Demonstrators included Palestinian, anti-globalization and Green Party representatives.
- April 24 - The Muslim Student Association of University of California at San Diego sponsored a talk by Hatem al-Bazian, a speaker whose anti-Semitic and anti-American views were challenged by Hillel members, who placed fliers around campus that featured al-Bazian’s quotes. Muslim students who witnessed what Hillel members were doing began to scream and taunt the Jewish students; one allegedly made threats of physical harm.
- April 20 - An Israeli couple, living near the University of Illinois campus was the target of vandalism. A rock was thrown through the students' front window (where an Israeli flag had been displayed) and their car, parked out front, was also vandalized.
- April 20 - Students from the University of Iowa, Georgetown and George Washington University, among others, participated in Washington, D.C. protests orchestrated by pro-Palestinian groups to coincide with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee meeting and the IMF meeting.
April 18 - A rally was held at Princeton University in support of divestment from Israel. In a statement published on the rally organizers Web site, Richard Falk, a recently retired Albert Milbank Professor of International Law and Practice at Princeton, and member of the U.N. Human Rights Commission team that seeks to investigate alleged human rights violations in the "occupied territories," called on University officials to "divest from companies profiting from business with Israel at this time... to express solidarity with victims of massive crimes against humanity and to call upon Israel to respect UN authority and the elemental rules of international law by withdrawing from occupied Palestinian territory."
- April 18 - At University of Colorado - Boulder, fliers denouncing Israel and the "Jewish/Zionist Lobby" produced by the viruently anti-Semitic and racist National Alliance were found posted in numerous places on campus.
- April 17 - At Columbia University, several graduate teaching assistants used departmental e-mail listserves to promote an on-campus anti-Israel rally. Several faculty members cancelled their classes to allow students to attend. One graduate student was sanctioned for misuse of departmental lists and one of the faculty members has since apologized.
April 15 - Al-Talib, the Muslim newsmagazine at UCLA and and Al Kalima, the Muslim newsmagazine at UC - Irvine, jointly published a highly anti-Israel publication entitled "Zionism: the Forgotten Apartheid." The magazine publicly lauds and promotes both Hamas and Hizbullah as legitimate and noteworthy resistance movements. The magazine has also been distributed at San Diego State University, UC - San Diego and the University of Southern California.
- April 15 - A Jewish student at Illinois State University alleges he was threatened by a 30-year-old Palestinian graduate student. For several weeks, the Palestinian student has held pro-Palestinian protests/gatherings on the university’s quad. When asked to sign a petition in support of the Palestinians, the Jewish student questioned whether the petition addressed the issue of suicide bombings. At this point, the Palestinian student walked up to him and said the petition talked about how to blow the Jewish student's head off. The Jewish student reported the incident to campus police.
- April 15 - Muslim student groups at University of California - Berkeley and UC - San Diego posted fliers featuring fabricated, distorted and out-of-context quotations from the Talmud and other rabbinical literature. Many of these anti-Semitic "quotations" are easily found on extremist Web sites. Samples include:
-- "A Jew is permitted to rape, cheat and perjure himself, but he must take care that he is not found out, so that Israel may not suffer."
-- "A Gentile girl who is three years old can be violated."
-- "The Jews are human beings, but the nations of the world are not human beings but beasts."
-- "When the Messiah comes, every Jew will have 2800 slaves."
- April 15 - The Gaza Strip, a one-sided film that is severely critical of Israel, was screened at New Jersey's Drew University.
- April 15 - Julio César Pino, an associate professor of history at Kent State University, was a guest columnist in the campus newspaper The Kent Stater. He used the space to praise a recent suicide bomber/bombing in a poem titled, "Singing out prayer for a youth martyr. The poem praised a female suicide bomber and referred to the president of the U.S. as a "numbskull."
- April 14 - The University of Colorado - Boulder Hillel Center's Israeli flag was defaced with the anti-Israel graffiti: "Stop the Illegal Occupation of the West Bank," and "Stop the Killing of Palestinians."
- April 12 - The Gaza Strip was screened at Princeton.
- April 12 - At UC - Riverside the Muslim Student Union sponsored a rally and protest for Palestine that concluded with a march to Riverside's City Hall.
- April 11 - An anti-Israel walkout and sit-in was held at Virginia's George Mason University. To encourage student participation, several inflammatory fliers were posted all over campus depicting a dead baby and calling on all students to protest the violence.
- April 11 - Anti-Israel groups protested during a talk by Shimon Shetreet, the Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem, at Tulane University in New Orleans.
- April 10 - Sami al-Arian, a former professor who was fired for his alleged ties to Palestinian terror groups, including Hamas, gave a talk at the University of Florida.
- April 9 - A "National Day of Action in Commemoration of Massacre of Village of Deir Yassine April 9 1948" was held at UC - Davis, to coincide with Holocaust Remembrance Day activities. Speakers discussed divestment and "resistance," among other topics.
- April 9 - At the University of Denver, an anti-Israel rally was held. One speaker, Val Phillips, claimed that "right now, Israeli soldiers are rounding up every Palestinian male in Jenin, and dividing them into two groups. One group to be arrested, and the other to be killed." Speakers compared Zionism to Nazism and a member of the Colorado Campaign for Mideast Peace called one of the Jewish students present a "kike."
- April 9 - Students at more than 30 schools, including Columbia University, Georgetown, the UC - Berkeley, the University of Massachusetts and the University of Washington held a national "day of action" to start a campaign to persuade universities to divest themselves of stock in corporations that do business with Israel, as they did in isolating South Africa in the 1980's.
- April 9 - Campus police at UC - Berkeley arrested 79 pro-Palestinian protesters who had stormed into a classroom building in an attempt to disrupt a Holocaust Remembrance Day commemoration. In the aftermath of the incident, the university suspended the student organization, "Students for Justice in Palestinine," pending an investigation.
- April 9 - Students at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor posed in front of the student union with gags in their mouths and their hands in an effort to symbolize the "suffering of the Palestinians."
- April 9 - An anti-Israel rally, staged as a follow-up to the April 8 demonstration by Arab and Muslim students at San Francisco State University, featured posters bearing a picture of soup cans reading "Made in Israel," on the label and listing the contents as "Palestinian Children Meat," and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon as the manufacturer. A photo of a baby, with its stomach sliced open, was also on the can, following the words "according to Jewish Rites under American license."
- April 8 - At University of Colorado - Boulder anti-Semitic messages, including the epithet "Zionazis" and the phrase, "Your Tax Dollars are Paying to Kill Palestinian Children," appeared on sidewalks throughout campus on the first day of the planned observance of Holocaust Awareness Week.
- April 8 - An anti-Israel protest was staged by several Muslim and Arab student groups under the banner "Genocide in the 21st Century" at San Francisco State University.
- April 6 - A construction site for new dormitories at UC - Santa Barbara was defaced with anti-Israel/anti-Semitic graffiti including the phrases: “Anti Zion/Nuke Israel," "God Hates Jews," and "Burn the Torah."
- April 5 - In The Daily Targum, the campus newspaper of Rutgers University, a front-page report on the previous day's rally was published. It quoted one protester, a fourth-year pharmacy student, as claiming that the media portray Palestinians as terrorists, "but when the Israeli government went into an all-female hospital and randomly selected 30 women, called them terrorists and executed them, you don't hear about it." She added, "We must educate where the media has failed."
- April 5 - A pattern of harassment calls, including three threats, was directed at the University of Colorado - Boulder Hillel.
- April 5 - Arab and Muslim students from North Carolina State University (NCSU), Duke University and the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill staged an anti-Israel rally outside a campus mosque at NCSU.
- April 4 - A demonstration was organized by the student-led Arabs United at Rutgers University to protest Israeli Army attacks on Palestinian communities.
- April 4 - A graphic, multi-media e-mail, showing dead, wounded and mutilated Palestinian children was circulated on the campus of UCLA.
- April 1 to 5 - A student vendor at a conference supporting the Palestinian cause at the University of Michigan was selling materials that denied the Holocaust.
- April 2002 - Mazin B. Qumsiyeh an associate professor at Yale University circulated an anti-Israel e-mail petition on U.S. campuses, based on one distributed in the UK. The list continues to grow and at present time includes over 300 signatories.
- March 28 - A Muslim student group at the University of Colorado - Boulder removed a link from its Web pages that led users to a site that contains the charter of the Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist group that encourages followers to fight Zionism and to kill Jews.
- March 27 - The UC - Berkeley Hillel Center was vandalized with anti-Israel and anti-Semitic graffiti and the glass front door was smashed in with a cement block.
- February 20 - The Gaza Strip, a virulently anti-Israel film, was shown at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. A heated discussion between Arab and Jewish audience members erupted followed the screening.
- February 16-18 - A nationally promoted conference at the UC - Berkeley served as the kickoff for a student-led campaign to encourage universities to divest themselves of stock in corporations that do business with Israel.
- February 7 - Pro-Palestinian students staged a protest at the UC - Berkeley calling Israel an "apartheid state" and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon a war criminal. Demonstrators also staged a skit, during which cardboard models of "Palestinian homes" were crushed by students holding photos of Prime Minister Sharon in front of their faces.
- January 31 - Mark Bruzonsky, Publisher of Middle East Realities, gave the keynote address at the University of Chicago Model United Nations. The message was strongly anti-Israel and has been reproduced on a Holocaust denial Web site maintained by a longtime Holocaust denier and extremist, Ingrid Rimland.
- January 23 - Hanan Ashrawi, the Palestinian spokeswoman was a guest lecturer at Calvin College (Grand Rapids, MI).