The NYU campus. Photo: File.
Students at New York University (NYU) plan to promote a resolution supportive of the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel in November, drawing opposition from some Zionist campus leaders.
The resolution will be brought forward on November 1 by three students senators including Rose Asaf, a co-founder of Jewish Voice for Peace at NYU, the student-run Washington Square News reported. It will be voted on through a secret ballot on December 6, after six speakers from each opposing side of the debate will be given two minutes to speak, and only NYU students will be allowed to attend.
Asaf said that the resolution will be “explicitly posed” as part of the BDS campaign, whose co-founder and other senior advocates have urged the creation of a Palestinian state in place of Israel. “A lot of the times at other universities, they’ll try to separate it from the BDS movement and say this is just divestment,” she noted. “We are explicitly saying that this is a result of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.”
Leaders with the student clubs TorchPAC and Realize Israel — both of which were subject to a boycott pledge by more than 50 BDS-supporting student clubs at NYU in April — expressed their concerns over the latest BDS initiative on campus to Washington Square News.
A bipartisan bill meant to help create the conditions on the ground necessary for an eventual end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict…
“BDS infantilizes Palestinians, removing any responsibility or agency from their end,” said Gabe Hoffman, treasurer of Realize Israel, who noted that Israel has previously tried to negotiate peace with the Palestinians. “It hinders the prospects of a mutually agreed-upon peaceful solution and ultimately hurts the wrong people, namely, the near 50,000 Palestinians with jobs at risk if their firms are sanctioned.”
Asaf called this position “neo-colonial and paternalistic,” pointing out that Palestinian trade unions approve of BDS.
TorchPAC treasurer Joshua Reichek added in turn that he was “skeptical of singling out the only Jewish state for divestment.”
“While I do not agree with all of the policies of the Israeli Government, I would imagine that most people would rightly view an attempt to boycott Americans or divest from all American institutions due to Trump’s policies as ignorant and bigoted,” he added.
Adela Cojab, president of Realize Israel and a former senator, said the BDS debate pointed to a broader issue — namely, the lack of representation at the Student Government Assembly.
When she formerly served as a senator, Cojab said, she was discriminated against by her peers once they discovered her affiliation with Realize Israel.
“It’s very alarming that an entire demographic is excluded from representation on student government, and the resolution is being presented that affects that group directly,” she said. “We can argue the political points of BDS all we want we want, but if we take a step back and look at our student government, the way that it is functioning and the way that it excludes voices, we should realize that this is not a representative body of the university.”
In March, the SGA passed a resolution calling on NYU — which maintains a portal site in Tel Aviv — to issue “a formal memorandum to the State of Israel to remove its barricade of entry for NYU Students for Justice in Palestine and NYU Jewish Voice for Peace,” referencing a 2017 Israeli law barring entry to any foreigner who “knowingly issues a public call for boycotting Israel.”
The resolution also called on the school to “conduct a fully transparent review of its nondiscrimination policies for Palestinian, Middle Eastern and other affected students traveling to the State of Israel and attending NYU Tel Aviv.”
Realize Israel condemned the resolution at the time, saying it “makes biased and unfounded accusations against NYU Tel Aviv and the State of Israel as a whole.”
At a town hall meeting held in April, shortly after the boycott against TorchPAC and Realize Israel was announced, NYU President Andrew Hamilton reiterated his opposition to the BDS campaign.
“We believe the university exist to bring people together not to seperate them,” Hamilton said. “For this reason I am opposed to BDS. The university will not participate in boycotting of academics based in Israel. We believe in academic freedom and the free flow of ideas. Boycotting is antithetical to that vision.”
His comments were reportedly met with hisses.
Hamilton likewise called the BDS campaign “an affront to academic freedom” in a 2016 interview with the student-run newspaper NYU Local.
“To restrict in any way the flow of students or faculty from universities anywhere is something that I would find an affront to academic freedom,” he said. “[If] we are going to defend what we do in research, in areas of political science, in areas of gun violence, in areas of reproductive health, if we’re going to defend that to our own government, we will certainly defend that when it comes to our engagement with other governments, and so for me that speaks to BDS.”
Months earlier, a BDS motion passed by NYU’s Graduate Student Organizing Committee was declared void of “force or effect” by its parent body, the United Auto Workers International (UAW), on the grounds that it violated the organization’s constitutional bylaws.
We all know that the midterm elections are different this time around. They are usually like “all politics,” namely local. But this time around they’re different. They are all presidential, all about Trump, as most everything is. And for the anti-Trump crowd — I’m talking about the political commentators and “analysts” — any and all things bad are held to be Trump’s fault. This is presumably because they believe that their condemnations of Trump will result in a Democrat takeover of the House of Representatives.
A new book explores how graffiti artists in Beirut skirt limitations on expression to share political criticism in the streets.
A photograph of the book “Drawing Lines” by Tamara Zantout, taken at the launch of the book at Beit Beirut cultural center, Beirut, Lebanon, Oct. 25, 2018.
BEIRUT — Beirut’s alleyways and streets are peppered in bright, detailed and provocative graffiti. Street artists use the medium, which exists in a legal grey area, to express their identity and give voice to political frustrations.
On Tuesday, San Francisco will become the largest city in the nation to allow noncitizens to vote, and the city has spent $310,000 on a “new registration system” specifically aimed at illegals. As the San Francisco Chronicle reports, the plan is the first in the state and follows Proposition N, a 2016 ballot measure allowing votes by noncitizens over the age of 18, reside in the city, and have children under age 19.
By the count of the Chronicle, only 49 noncitizens have signed up to vote on Tuesday, which works out to $6,326 for every illegal voter, but there’s more to the story. City officials are worried that voting could expose illegals to ICE, who might come looking and possibly deport somebody. So supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, a backer of Proposition N, urged the city to spend $500,000 to warn the illegals.
At first Sabbath service after massacre, shooting survivors are blessed; rabbi says to those who condemned Trump’s visit: ‘No one tells me how to welcome a guest in my own home’
On November 3, 2018, a joint communal Shabbat prayer service at Pittsburgh’s Beth Shalom Conservative synagogue following the massacre a week prior which saw 11 Jewish community members killed. (Amanda Borschel-Dan/Times of Israel)
PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania — A week after an anti-Semitic shooter massacred 11 worshipers at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue, the community embraced each other in prayer on Saturday.
IS EUROPE RETURNING to the horrors of the 1930s? In an assessment typical of the moment, Max Holleran writes in the New Republic that “in the past ten years, new right-wing political movements have brought together coalitions of Neo-Nazis with mainstream free-market conservatives, normalizing political ideologies that in the past rightly caused alarm.” He sees this trend creating a surge in “xenophobic populism.” Writing in Politico, Katy O’Donnell agrees: “Nationalist parties now have a toehold everywhere from Italy to Finland, raising fears the continent is backpedaling toward the kinds of policies that led to catastrophe in the first half of the 20th century.” Jewish leaders like Menachem Margolin, head of the European Jewish Association, sense “a very real threat from populist movements across Europe.”
IS EUROPE RETURNING to the horrors of the 1930s? In an assessment typical of the moment, Max Holleran writes in the New Republic that “in the past ten years, new right-wing political movements have brought together coalitions of Neo-Nazis with mainstream free-market conservatives, normalizing political ideologies that in the past rightly caused alarm.”
We’ve been told for a long time that the ceasefire is on the way. It had many names in the past, such as tahdiah, hudna, and most recently—”an arrangement.” On Friday, once again, reports started emerging that an agreement has been reached. Several hours later, southern Israel was hit with a barrage of rockets. What happened?
And He said, “You will not be able to see My face, for No Human Being shall see Me and live.” — Shemot 33:20
Faith is deeper than knowledge. While scientific data is absorbed only in the brain, faith permeates all parts of the human personality. Nothing is untouched, all spiritual limbs quiver, and everything is transformed. It is thus more difficult to acquire faith than knowledge, and faith has a more radical effect on the human being.
A Catholic archbishop recently touched on an unspoken but highly subversive phenomenon: How anti-Christian forces exploit Christian teachings to empower those who seek to dismantle Christian civilization, Muslims being chief among them.
In an interview published last summer by the Italian outlet IlGionarle.it, Catholic Archbishop Athanasius Schneider of Kazakhstan said:
The King of Jordan, not some lowly clerk, announced that Jordan will not extend the currently existing leases renting two parcels of land to Israel. One is the so-called Island of Peace in the northern Naharayim area and the other located in the southern Arava, near Tzofar, an agricultural cooperative village (moshav). Jordan was entirely within its rights to decide not to renew the leases