A growing toxic mix of campus Islamism, exploitation of racial grievances, and threats.
Disruption of Israeli or pro-Israel speakers and events is becoming all too common on college campuses, including by groups like Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and similar groups. The purpose is to make sure that Israeli and pro-Israel points of view cannot be presented without incident, and to create a campus climate of intimidation.
We have reported on several such recent disruptions, including at University of Minnesota Law School, UT-Austin, Kings College (London), U. Windsor, University of South Florida, and an LGBTQ Shabbat Event in Chicago. Even events that are not disrupted are protested, such as the appearance of actor Michael Douglas and human rights hero Natan Sharansky at Brown University
The latest was the disruption of an appearance at UC-Davis by Israeli diplomat George Deek, who also happens to be an Arab Christian.
Israel On Campus Coalition reports:
Earlier this week, Israeli-Arab diplomat George Deek was shouted down by students affiliated with Students for Justice in Palestine at UC Davis. The SJP members, who called out “Long live the Intifada,” refused to engage with George, who came to Davis to discuss the need for mutual respect, dialogue, and understanding.
Legal Insurrection obtained the following video from someone in the room:
You can clearly see Deek standing to the left in this screen capture, as the protesters took over the stage.
This video from a different angle also was posted on YouTube:
According to a person in the room, the SJP president was present for the protest. After the protest was over, Deek was able to continue his talk.
The Blaze further reports:
Pro-Palestinian protesters staged an organized interruption of a lecture at the University of California, Davis by an Israeli-Arab diplomat, as video posted online showed them shouting “Allahu akbar” and “long live the intifada” in apparent approval of a six-month wave of Palestinian stabbing attacks — the latest of which claimed the life of an American student Tuesday.
The group interrupted a Monday talk by Israeli diplomat George Deek — an Arab Christian who notably is from Jaffa, the mixed Jewish-Arab area south of Tel Aviv where Vanderbilt University graduate student Taylor Force was stabbed to death by a Palestinian assailant — according to the Algemeiner, which covers Jewish news.
Besides shouting “Allabu akbar,” that is, “Allah is the greatest” and “long live the intifada,” the student protesters also chanted slogans tying the fight against Israel to a struggle between blacks and whites.
“Palestine will be free, fight white supremacy!” they chanted along with, “Israel is anti-black!” ….
As they exited the room, the protesters — many of whom wore Palestinian keffiyeh headscarves, Islamic hijab headscarves and beards associated with devout Muslims — repeatedly shouted “Allahu akbar!”
None of this is really surprising, we have seen increasing aggressiveness by SJP and similar groups out of frustration that their futile student government divestment actions gain them nothing.
That aggressiveness has become racialized through the use of the doctrine of “intersectionality,” which portrays Israeli Jews as at the center of all struggles of non-whites in the U.S. and elsewhere. The Jew thus is demonized as the cause of evil in the world, as reflected in the writings of “pro-Palestinian” activists like Oberlin professor Joy Karega:
In an appeal to racial animus, the following statement was posted by the group behind the disruption:
UC Davis, as at many of the UC campuses, finds anti-Israel activity expressly based on religion, with Islamic chants mixed in with the anti-Israel activism — so it’s impossible to claim with a straight face that it is not anti-Semitic. At a UC-Davis divestment vote, chants of “Allahu Akbar” also were heard:
The question is, when will university officials protect the right of speakers to appear without physical intimidation and disruption. It’s one thing to protest an appearance outside the room, it’s another to disrupt the presentation and take over the stage.
I reached out to UC-Davis media relations for comment, including as to whether any actions are being taken against the protesters, but have not heard back as of this writing.
UPDATE: At about 12:45 p.m. Eastern I received the following statement from UC-Davis media relations:
“Aggies for Israel invited the public to this meeting through campus and community notices. While there was an interruption at the beginning of the meeting, the group dipersed within a few minutes without incident, and the speaker was able to deliver a talk without interruption. Security was present at the meeting. The safety of our campus community is always our highest concern, and at no time did it appear that any physical altercations occurred.
Some students who participated in the initial interruption stayed for the meeting and asked questions during a question-and-answer portion of the lecture, which they were of course free to do. There were no further interruptions or incidents during the meeting.”