Brooklyn College campus. Photo: CUNY.
Jewish officials and campus-watchdog representatives slammed the findings of the New York public university system’s investigation into antisemitism, telling The Algemeiner on Monday that the report will encourage further Jew-hatred.
Referring to the recently released City University of New York (CUNY) report on the phenomenon, and the activities of the anti-Israel group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), Susan B. Tuchman, director of the Center for Law and Justice at the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) – cited by the report as the “primary source of the allegations of antisemitism on CUNY campuses” – said it “failed in its mission.”
“The report justifies and defends SJP’s actions, and tries to shift blame away from the group, when there’s no question – even from the report – that SJP is responsible for inciting hatred of Israel on campus, encouraging students and student groups to marginalize and ostracize Jewish students, and harassing and threatening students and others who disagree with the group’s hateful views,” she told The Algemeiner.
The CUNY investigation, Tuchman said, provided a “unique and important opportunity for CUNY to make a difference for its students” and become “a model for other campuses around the country where antisemitism has been a problem.” The report, she told The Algemeiner, “will embolden students and student groups like the SJP to continue to harass and threaten Jewish and pro-Israel students.”
Tammi Rossman-Benjamin, head of the campus watchdog group the AMCHA Initiative, said that while some of SJP’s actions are protected by civil liberties, two points “hold true”:
First, Jewish and pro-Israel students also have a right to their free speech, and it is being quashed. That’s heinous. Second, Jewish students have a right to complain about SJP to the administration, to say that the group is antisemitic. Jews are being shut down, defamed and targeted for harm in many ways that are not protected. It is illegal for SJP to use its own free speech to take away someone else’s.
Rossman-Benjamin said that research conducted by her organization “found that schools with SJP chapters are seven-to-eight times more likely to have instances of anti-Jewish hostility. People are jumping to reasonable conclusions when they blame SJP for antisemitic incidents.”
Tracy Turoff, vice president and general counsel of Hillel International – the world’s largest student organization – told The Algemeiner that the CUNY report “highlights a disturbing trend of incidents specifically targeting the Jewish community on campus with antisemitic rhetoric and threats of violence.”
She called on CUNY administrators and presidents to “condemn antisemitic comments and actions and to promptly and forcefully challenge hate speech.”
Clandestine watchdog group Canary Mission – which monitors anti-American, anti-Israel and antisemitic activities on college campuses – said its “data and facts” refute the findings of the report.
“Our research clearly shows the multiple and repeated incidences of radical anti-Israel and antisemitic behavior among SJP members within the CUNY system,” a Canary Mission representative, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Algemeiner.
Members of SJP, however, told CUNY investigators that …read more
Source:: The Algemeiner