Tuesday, July 17, 2007

In Reaction to Britain’s University & College Union Boycott of Israeli Universities

Thomas Friedman in his Op-Ed from June 17, 2007
called this boycott for what it is-- anti-Semitism:
So to single out Israeli universities alone for a punitive boycott is rank anti-Semitism. Let’s see, Syria is being investigated by the United Nations for murdering Lebanon’s former prime minister, Rafik Hariri. Syrian agents are suspected of killing the finest freedom-loving Lebanese journalists, Gibran Tueni and Samir Kassir. But none of that moves the far left to call for a boycott of Syrian universities. Why? Sudan is engaged in genocide in Darfur. Why no boycott of Sudan? Why?

He ends off the article with these final words:
...But just singling out Israeli universities for a boycott, in the face of all the other madness in the Middle East — that’s what anti-Semites would do.
Thomas Friedman starts off the article with the following poignant anecdote while attending a doctoral graduation ceremony at Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
These were Israeli Arab doctoral students — many of them women and one of whom accepted her degree wearing a tight veil over her head. Funny — she could receive her degree wearing a veil from the Hebrew University, but could not do so in France, where the veil is banned in public schools. Arab families cheered unabashedly when their sons and daughters received their Hebrew U. Ph.D. diplomas, just like the Jewish parents.

How crazy is this, I thought. Israel’s premier university is giving Ph.D.’s to Arab students, two of whom were from East Jerusalem — i.e. the occupied territories — supervised by Jewish Israeli professors, all while some far-left British academics are calling for a boycott of Israeli universities.
In a related item here's a great video presentation by the YouTube vlogger Hollyyyyyyy, who puts together some wonderful and affective Israel PR presentations