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Academic boycotters blame “Israel Lobby” money for negative reaction

Academic boycotters blame “Israel Lobby” money for negative reaction

At “redwashing” conference in Beirut they reveal how they really feel.

Several of most prominent promoters of the American Studies Association academic boycott of Israel attended a bizarre “redwashing” panel discussion in Beirut, at which they tried to delegitimize the Jewish people’s indigenous history in Israel and connection to other indigenous peoples. I’ll have much more on that insidious conference in another post, but for now you can read the posts by Jeffrey Goldberg and Prof. Jonathan Marks.

These academic boycotters gave an interview to The Daily Star of Lebanon that is very revealing. They played upon classic anti-Semitic tropes of Jewish money controlling the press in trying to minimize the overwhelming rejection of the academic boycott throughout most of academia.

ASA scholars stand firm by Israel boycott (emphasis added):

Since then, the organization has been forced to defend itself from a barrage of highly vocal critics who have accused the ASA of everything from anti-Semitism to threatening academic freedom.

At the conference this week, however, many ASA members reiterated their strong support for the motion.

“The boycott is also about the vision of a right to education for people; it’s about a right to democratic participation of all people and it’s about the right to land,” said Alex Lubin, a professor at AUB [American University in Beirut, on leave from University of New Mexico] and ASA member.

Despite efforts to publish op-ed pieces explaining the ASA’s position, Lubin said the organization had “effectively been blocked out of [the] U.S. press.”

The reason, he said, was “donor dollars that come to them [the publications] from the Israel lobby.”
Lubin also said many Americans took issue with the comparison between the treatment of Palestinians and Native Americans.

“Americans don’t like to talk about their country as a settlement. To name Israel as a settlement is to talk about America as a settlement,” Lubin said.

[Virginia Tech Prof. and columnist] Steven Saleita, also an ASA member, was undeterred by the criticism the organization has faced from the presidents of some universities who have condemned the boycott.

“University presidents follow money and they follow power. It’s actually a good gauge,” he told The Daily Star. “If you’re getting the blessing of university presidents then you’re probably not doing anything productive.”

While some institutions have withdrawn their support from ASA in light of the boycott, several new universities have registered for membership in recent weeks.

“We believe the ASA resolution has broken the taboo of standing against Israeli policies in the United States, joining international public opinion in condemning Israeli policies, and supporting Palestinian rights,” wrote several members of the American University of Cairo’s faculty in an open letter of support for the boycott….

“The BDS Movement is rapidly growing across the globe, and Zionists understand it as a threat to the status quo of Israel’s settler colonialism, occupation and apartheid,” said [Wesleyan University Professor] J. Kehaulani Kauanui, a member of the ASA National Council. “The ASA resolution is an important ethical stand, one that contributes to the refusal to normalize Israel.”

It’s not surprising that these academics are taking that line, it is the line promoted by the Electronic Intifada and other anti-Israel websites.

Blaming the “Israel Lobby” is longstanding codeword for American Jews.

Listen to what they say in attacking the wide range of American society that rejects the academic boycott, regardless of position on the Middle East dispute.

It tells you everything you need to know about the true motivations of the core group of anti-Israel academic boycotters.

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I wonder which is more debased: the anti-Semetic ASA or the collective climate change industrial complex? Are there instances of “academics” that align with one and not the other? Is the use of the term “academic” inappropriate for people who work at or attend college, but refuse to entertain doubts or allow empirical data intrude on their “research”? I contend that the proper term for such is “hackademic”, as they have rejected some of the basic characteristics required for any seeker of knowledge.

    Estragon in reply to Immolate. | January 9, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    The only remedy is to “defund” all “higher education” by cutting off federal subsidies, direct and indirect, including student loans and grants.

    Many of these institutions are sitting on billion dollar endowments, sometimes multiples, and their reaction to government programs for student loans or “tuition assistance” is to raise tuition to absorb all the additional money without actually expanding opportunities for anyone except their far-left faculties.

    If they had to function in the marketplace, attracting students as customers paying a fair price, and controlling expenses instead of giving cushy tenured spots to radicals in peripheral “disciplines,” they would be more prudent with how they spend and what sort of nonsense they tolerate.

    If Harvard wants to keep people of the ilk of Lizzie Warren on faculty, let them pay for her themselves out of their own resources, and leave the poor taxpayers out of it.

      Not A Member of Any Organized Political in reply to Estragon. | January 9, 2014 at 5:15 pm


      All “public” institutions need to be privatized.

      Let them sell of stock and have real stock holders to be accountable to for their deeds and mis-deeds.

      Plus give each paying student shares of stock in the upon enrollment.

      To start to change things people must first have new thoughts. I read that somewhere sometime.

Not A Member of Any Organized Political | January 9, 2014 at 12:41 pm

Thank you for staying on top of this Professor Jacobson.

Now is the time for push back.

Why should we allow foreign-controlled student organizations push their bigotry and hate-speech.

To para-phrase JFK, to all freedom and justice loving citizens “We are all Jewish Now.”


My personal favorite—
“Queer statelessness: Redefining Indigenous Sovereignty”

That one alone could vacuum out your entire brain.

How do people get this twisted?

Why blame Israel lobby? They really ought to blame Prof. Wm. Jacobson.

    Immolate in reply to Yujin. | January 9, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Maybe the Prof. is the Jewish lobby. Jacob is a Jewish name, right? In fact, God refers to the entire nation of Israel as Jacob in the Bible. The tribulation is often referred to as “The time of Jacob’s trouble”, meaning the time of Israel’s trouble. Coincidence? I think not.

So the “Israel Lobby” is responsible for American ideals of academic freedom, justice, and human decency.

Good to know.

“How do people get this twisted?”

The facts are against them, so they have to contrive ever-more-convoluted theories ‘explaining’ why they are right. The more simple-minded ones just scream “da jooz!” but those who cherish their reputations as ‘thinkers’ must come up with more intellectual-sounding lies.

Great work you do. I’m surprised at how big the list of universities signed on as rejecting already is Wheww…we donate to several of them. How un-PC of them, ya know.

I see that the AUB (CASAR) didn’t invite any counter perspectives for its love-in.

I did so want to get in on this session by Paul Amar :

Gay Spring + Arab Spring = New Global Security Regime? : Securitizing the Queer Intersections of “Feminist” US Foreign Policy, Humanitarian Militarism, and Brotherhood Populism

And what’s going on? All these ‘covert’ meetings between Israel and Native Americans. “Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh, My.”

“…And then there was the scandalous case of the Native American Poet and performer Joy Harjo (Muscogee) who rejected mass appeals that she abide by the academic and cultural boycott and took up residency at the Tel Aviv University. “ J. Kehaulani Kauanui

She must have understood something they didn’t – reconciliation.

If the Palestinians really truly want some land I hear that both Iraq and Afghanistan are up for grabs. Even NK will welcome them if they play tattooed-basketball. And, China is looking for volunteers to orbit the moon, too.

I would like to know how they are going to keep the gay participants in the conference alive during their stay in Islamist controlled Beirut.
“redwashing” trying to justify terrorism, torture and oppression of women, gays and non-muslims by claiming that the “palestinian” situation bears some sort of resemblance to the situation with the survivors* of the last wave of migration to the Americas.

*more commonly referred to as “Native Americans”, they eliminated the previous migrant group.

Actually, Wm, this “’Israel Lobby’ is longstanding codeword for American Jews” and Evangelical Christians. If you forget that component, you are going to miss the wedge that Muslims are attempting to drive between these two groups: they blame Israel for the persecution of Christians all over the ME, and for the declining Christian population of places like Bethlehem. You’re also going to miss the significance of the breaking of that wedge to the future of Israel with the Iran showdown looming.

Fostering and maintaining that rift is why so many Israeli Muslims are very upset with Israeli Arab Christians who have decided to align themselves with Israel and openly recognize the common foundation of the world’s two great religions. This had led these IAC to push for greater involvement in serving Israel through the military. That initiative threatens to and does undercut the whole Israeli persecution responsible for the declining Christian population propaganda. Suddenly, instead of a faux pan-Arabism, you’re looking at an Israeli Jewish-Christian alignment that divides the Arab community. As the IAC involvement deepens and widens, the Christians in Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq will be taking notes.

So, even the ASA code word is being used here to divide. Let’s not help them by overlooking the identities of the parties involved.