Anti-Israel Activities on U.S. Campuses Spiked This Fall, ADL Says

Anti-Semitic tendencies appear to be moving more to the forefront of many protests critical of Israel in the wake of the Gaza war, report says.

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Anti-Israel protestors outside the White House, October 1, 2014.
Anti-Israel protestors outside the White House, October 1, 2014.Credit: Reuters

More than 75 anti-Israel events have been reported on U.S. college and university campuses this fall, more than twice as many as last year, according to a report by the Anti-Defamation League.

Such events more than doubled in the wake of Israel’s 50-day operation in Gaza over the summer, according to an ADL report, “Anti-Israel Activity on Campus after Operation Protective Edge.”

According to the group's tally, over 75 anti-Israel events were conducted on U.S. college and university campuses this fall, more than twice as many as last year.

There were 35 anti-Israel events scheduled in 2013, marking a 114 percent increase in the number of those events scheduled to take place this year, the League said.

“Not all criticism of Israel is anti-Israel in nature, and not all anti-Israel rhetoric and activity reflect anti-Semitism. However, anti-Israel sentiment increasingly crosses the line to anti-Semitism by invoking anti-Semitic myths of Jewish control and demonic depictions of Israelis or comparing Israel’s actions to those of the Nazis during the Holocaust,” according to the report. Such messages appear to be moving more to the forefront of many protests critical of Israel, the report said.

Student groups hosted at least 374 events critical of Israeli policy during the 2013-2014 academic year, with about 40 percent of them focused on how to initiate Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns on campus. There also were at least 57 events sponsored by university academic departments over the last two years that presented a one-sided view of the Israel-Palestinian conflict, according to the report.

In addition, at least 30 rallies directed against Israeli policy held in the U.S. during Operation Protective Edge this past summer were sponsored or co-sponsored by pro-Palestinian student groups.

One event critical of Israel this semester that crossed the line into anti-Semitism was the distribution of fliers at the University of California, Santa Barbara depicting the Twin Towers and a Star of David and alleging that the 9/11 attacks was “an outside job” and “9/11 was Mossad.”

BDS activity this semester was led by the Student Senate president at Ohio University, who dumped a bucket of “blood” over her head to represent the blood of Palestinians killed by Israel in a sendup of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

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