Photo: Monica Almeida/The New York Times
As most are aware, hate speech is protected speech under the Constitution. However, there is a huge distinction between what’s said in the town square and what is uttered on the university campus. Within the university, one is supposed to create a non-hostile environment that is conducive for learning for all students.
Free speech on college campuses is one of the most thorny of constitutional issues. We take the First Amendment to be a cherished American right. At college, students should be able to engage freely in the exhilarating intellectual pursuits of the mind. Being able to question, challenge and debate is what makes the university experience so extraordinary. Contrary to what is deemed popular in the age of “trigger warnings” and “safe spaces,” I believe nothing should be “off-limits,” and that students should fully participate in civil debate and be able to support their arguments with evidence.
The ideal objective of the university should be the quest for the truth. It should be part of what John Stuart Mill had described the university as being “the marketplace of ideas.”
Having had said that, the operative word here is “civil.” Why is it that there are protections in place for almost every other minority group, but not for our Jewish students?
Why is it that a student can be suspended from school for writing the “N” word on Facebook, but Jewish students often are afraid of crossing the quad with a yarmulke on his head or a Star of David around her neck.
The plethora of anti-Semitic incidents on college campuses has been reaching a fevered pitch. A Google search shows some alarming incidences: This week, Purchase College in Harrison, N.Y., has been disgraced by Nazi posters depicting swastikas and Adolf Hitler. On Dec. 3, at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, a student found a book for a research project defaced with a swastika; one page had written “Jews have no business at CMU” and in another handwriting, “You are right.”
A 77-year-old Jewish psychology professor, Elizabeth Midlarsky, at Teacher’s College of Columbia University on New York City’s Upper West Side, found two red swastikas and the word “Yid” spray-painted on the walls of her office. On Nov. 20 at Duke University in Durham, N.C., a swastika defaced a memorial that some students had put up in memory of the 11 Jewish worshippers killed in the Pittsburgh synagogue mass shooting.
Oftentimes, these cowardly, anonymous acts go unpunished.
What is even more disturbing is that under the cover of “free speech,” organizations such as Students for Justice in Palestine have acted as a base for support for frenzied, anti-Israel activities on American campuses, which create a predominant feeling of hostility towards Israel and the Jewish people.
Their students might have the right for their free speech, but it is only free speech for thee, and not for me. Oftentimes, Jewish students are bullied, harassed and intimidated when they want to hold a pro-Israel rally.
Their songs of peace, “Oseh Shalom,” are often drowned out by: “From the river to the sea, Palestine should be free.”
It’s a chant that leaves one wondering, “Where does that leave Israel?” And “what do they intend to do with our people?”
And sometimes, such as at a 2016 Students for Justice in Palestine rally at Hunter College on New York City’s Upper East Side, the chant was “Jews out of CUNY” and “Death to Jews.”
Substitute the word “black” for Jews in those two sentences, and ask yourself if university administrators would still consider this an acceptable free-speech issue on their campuses?
Often ignored are ties between groups that hold the rallies and fight for the BDS movement, and their links to terrorist organizations.
In 2016, Jonathan Schanzer, of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, who had worked for the U.S. Department of the Treasury, testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He explained how the largest organizer of the BDS movement in the United States, Students for Justice in Palestine, is orchestrated and largely funded by a Hamas front group, American Muslims for Palestine. He also described how the heads of this entity are former officers of the “Holy Land Foundation,” which in 2001 was convicted of money-laundering and funneling the money to Hamas, a State Department-listed terrorist organization.
Many times, university administrators feign ignorance about what constitutes anti-Semitism. That is precisely why the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act is necessary. It simply gives a definition so that university administrators can recognize anti-Semitism when they see it.
This definition is the exact same one as that of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, and is used in another branch of our federal government, the U.S. Department of State. It defines anti-Semitism as “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”
It also specifically states: “Manifestations might include the targeting of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.” However, it adds that “criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as anti-Semitic.”
Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) sponsored the Awareness Act, and it passed in December of 2016 by a vote of 99-0. However, it was tied up in the House Judiciary Committee by chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), who erroneously interpreted this as “an assault on free speech.”
Amid all of this depressing talk, there is a bit of good news. The good news is that Goodlatte will be retiring at the end of this month, and that Jerald Nadler (D-N.Y.), who is going to assume the chairmanship of the Judiciary Committee in January, has already signed onto the bill into the House.
So perhaps the same protections that every other minority group gets will soon be given to our Jewish and pro-Israel students.
Originally published at: https://www.jns.org/opinion/free-speech-for-thee-and-not-for-me/Read More →
Featured guest speaker: Eric Rozenman
Shortly before murdering 11 Jews at Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh on October 27, the accused killer posted online that “Jews are the spawn of Satan” and derided the United States as “Z.O.G.”—Zionist-occupied government.
A few days after the mass murder, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan reinforced his high-profile antisemitism—bigotry some members of Congress and members-elect have difficulty rejecting—by again denouncing “Satanic Jews” and “devilish Zionists.”
On October 22, New English Review Press published Eric Rozenman’s new book, Jews Make the Best Demons: “Palestine” and the Jewish Question. In it Rozenman, now at the Washington, D.C.-based Jewish Policy Center and former editor of B’nai B’rith’s International Jewish Monthly and of the Washington Jewish Week, spotlights how anti-Zionism has become the gateway drug for resurgent antisemitism. He also demonstrates the way Palestinian terrorism provided the template for today’s widespread Islamist terrorism—from hijacking airliners to free jailed terrorists in the 1970s to weaponizing airliners as on Sept. 11, 2001.
And, in a development too little reported, Rozenman shows how the medieval anti-Jewish blood libel, in the original and in modern disguise, animates the fabricated yet widely-believed “Palestinian narrative.” Together, these trends have reopened the pre-1945 “Jewish question,” as in, “what shall we do about the Jews?”
“It turns out Herzl was wrong,” Rozenman writes. “The renewed Jewish state would not end antisemitism directed against ‘the wandering Jews.’ Rather, it would provide a new and sometimes more attractive target. And in anti-Zionism’s demonizing of the Jewish collective, it has revived and relegitimized hatred of the Jew as individual.”
Jews Make the Best Demons also suggests a course of action—insisting, as boldly as necessary, on objective truth, truth disdained by the “post-modern, intersectionalist” far-Left, ignored by the revived, anti-democratic far-Right.
Join EMET’s conference call with Rozenman at noon on Wednesday, 12/19.
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About Eric Rozenman
Eric Rozenman is communications consultant for the Washington, D.C.-based Jewish Policy Center, which he joined in 2016. From 2002 to 2016, Rozenman worked as Washington director of CAMERA, the 65,000-member, Boston-based Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America. Among other things, CAMERA’s Washington office monitored news and communications media including The Washington Post, Washington Times, USA Today, Baltimore Sun, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Politico, Roll Call and The Hilland worked with members of Congress and their staffs on public broadcasting issues regarding National Public Radio and the Public Broadcasting Service (television).Read More →
The murder of Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi agents has dominated foreign policy news for months. Prominent members of Congress are increasingly upset that the United States’ relationship with Saudi Arabia has interfered with the rigorous pursuit of justice for Khashoggi. After all, they argue, Jamal Khashoggi was a US resident, so there should be consequences for the man who, according to the CIA, planned his murder – Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman – the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia. Many of these members of Congress also argue that Khashoggi’s murder is so serious that the strong, longtime, US-Saudi relationship must be re-evaluated if there is no justice.
But the Khashoggi case is hardly unique. In fact, there is a similar, but far more serious, situation that resulted in the deaths of two American citizens and the wounding of several others. This occurred on August 9, 2001, when a Sbarro Pizzeria in Jerusalem was pulverized by a suicide bomber.
On that day, Malki Roth, a 15-year-old girl; Judith Greenbaum, a pregnant 31-year-old woman; other American citizens; and many Israelis went to the Sbarro Pizzeria to enjoy some American-style pizza. The Pizzeria, on Ben Yehuda Street, was one of the busiest pedestrian intersections in Jerusalem and was a popular place, especially for families with children. At approximately 2 p.m., at the height of the lunch hour, a blast went off. A Palestinian terrorist named Izz al-Din Shuheil al-Masri had triggered a powerful bomb that was hidden in his guitar case, which was also packed with nails, nuts and bolts in order to cause maximum damage.
Fifteen people were killed in the blast, eight of them children, and 130 more people were wounded. Malki Roth was a teenager so thoughtful and loving that she often helped her mother care for her handicapped sibling. And Judith Greenberg, an only child who arrived in Israel with her husband as part of her graduate studies, who was five months pregnant at the time. Another four US citizens – David Danzig, Matthew Gordon, Joanne Nachenberg and Sara Nachenberg – were wounded. To this day, Joanne Nachenberg remains in a vegetative state.
Ahlam Tamimi, a Palestinian Arab citizen of Jordan, was the terrorist planner of this operation. She was a 20-year-old student at the time and a supporter of Hamas. Tamimi had even accompanied the suicide bomber there, leaving just before the blast. We know all of this because Tamimi has brazenly bragged about it time and time again, in television and radio interviews, many of which come up in a simple Google search.
When Ahlam Tamimi was released she was deported to Jordan, where she received a hero’s welcome. As a terrorist, she received money from the Palestinian Authority, at least $52,681, under the “pay-for-slay” program. The Hamas television station Al-Quds gave Tamimi her own television show, which aired every Friday and, until recently, was broadcast around the world. She married her cousin, Nazir Tamimi, who also had been serving time in an Israeli prison for killing an Israeli citizen, and who also was released in exchange for Gilad Schalit. Their wedding was broadcast throughout the Arab world.For decades, we at the Endowment for Middle East Truth have worked exhaustedly to get justice for the families of the Americans killed and wounded in Israel and the disputed territories by Palestinian terrorists like Ahlam Tamimi. We have successfully worked with Congress on multiple letters to the Department of Justice, and twice inspired hearings on the subject. At the second hearing, Arnold Roth, the father of Malki, was brought in to testify. At that hearing, for the first time ever, Brad Wiegmann, the deputy assistant attorney-general in the National Security Division, who supervises these prosecutions, was called to account for the DOJ’s lack of prosecution and was forced to provide a future report to the subcommittee.
Largely because it is so egregious, there has been some progress in the Tamimi case. In 2013, after the congressional letters, Tamimi was indicted by the Obama administration, and her extradition was requested from Jordan. In 2017, after the hearings, the indictment was made public by the Trump administration. But the Jordanian government has refused to extradite Tamimi, claiming there is no valid extradition treaty with the US. They refused, even though the US and Jordan signed an extradition treaty in 1995 that the State Department and the DOJ still recognize as valid. They refused even though in 1995, in 2006 and in 2015, Jordan extradited three criminal terrorists to the US that were wanted there. And they refused even though the Jordanian government receives more than a billion dollars a year in aid from the US
This injustice cannot be allowed to stand.
Ahlam Tamimi is a brutal terrorist murderer who has killed and wounded American citizens. She has reveled in her crimes and urged others to follow in her footsteps. Letting her live unmolested, celebrated and financially rewarded in Jordan is obscene. If the US needs to punish the man Mohammed Bin Salman who planned the murder of US resident Jamal Khashoggi, and the nation Saudi Arabia that protects him, then our nation should also punish Ahlam Tamimi who killed and wounded US citizens, and Jordan, the nation that is protecting her. Justice demands nothing less.
Sarah N. Stern is founder and president of the Endowment for Middle East Truth. Adam Turner is its general counsel & legislative affairs director.
Saturday, October 27th, 2018 is a day that will forever be etched in tragedy. For the Jewish people. For Pittsburgh. For America. 11 lives were taken in an act of violence and hate. These 11 people were partaking in a baby naming ceremony in the Tree of Life Synagogue during the Sabbath, until a man who “just wanted to kill Jews” entered the synagogue and opened fire on the congregation, taking 11 innocent souls, forever inflicting pain and suffering on a community.
In the days following the shooting, I constantly read my newsfeed, seeing what others had to say and how they were handling their grief. There were those who took to love: photos of Jews and non-Jews alike gathered at vigils, mourning the victims. There were those who took to anger: opinionated posts of those who felt the need to politicize the massacre, and commentators arguing over its cause.
My stomach dropped for the second time since I first heard about the shooting. Choosing love every single time? We don’t have to agree on the same issues? This is coming from the same woman who is quoted minimizing anti-Semitism, saying it’s not systemic, even though anti-Semitism made up 54% of religious hate crimes in 2016.
Sarsour is also the same woman who is a close friend and supporter of Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan, a well-known anti-Semite, who recently made the anti-Semitic comparison of Jews to termites. She failed to condemn Farrakhan’s words. These words don’t sound like unrelenting love to me.
In regards to Sarsour’s preaching about how we don’t have to agree on the same political issues, one can’t help but label her as an indisputable hypocrite. In 2017, Sarsour claimed that Zionists cannot be feminists as part of her platform on which the Women’s March is based. Sarsour’s words alienate those who support Israel from wanting to partake in a protest that deals with a completely different political issue, causing some Zionist feminists to feel forced to “sacrifice” their Zionism for the sake of feminism. What ever happened to unity, Linda?
I could continue describing more examples of the way Sarsour and her followers seem to forget her anti-Semitic past. I could mention how, at the Jewish Voice for Peace conference in Chicago in 2017, Sarsour felt “honored” to be speaking with Rasmea Odeh, a convict in Israel who murdered two Jewish students at Hebrew University in a 1969 terror attack.
I could also recall the time Sarsour called Zionism, the belief that Jews have the right to self-determination and should live in their ancestral homeland, “creepy.” Because when there is a rise in anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic attacks in the United States (not to mention Europe), it’s “creepy” to want to live safely in the only Jewish nation in the world.
I could go on, but I won’t. Because this a time when Jews and non-Jews must cast our differences aside and come together in genuine mourning and prayer and healing. Sarsour may use words of “unrelenting love” now when it’s most convenient for her and her following, but to a pro-Israel Jew, that only adds more salt to the wound when our community is already hurting. Linda Sarsour doesn’t speak for me.
The dead have not all been buried. Yet, they have been used as cudgels for partisan political attacks. Immediately after the ghastly attack on worshippers at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, the single most horrific anti-Semitic attack in US history.
I would like to make one simple request: Out of respect for the dead, please refrain from the temptation of using this tragedy as a club with which to bludgeon one’s political opponents.
No matter how passionately you might feel about the moral rectitude of your own personal political party over the other.
It is time to focus on healing. Focus on what we can do to heal a scarred, fractured nation, and a scared, fractured people.
We Jews felt we have finally come to a place we can call home, where we can plant our trees, nurture them and let them blossom on fertile soil. That it could never happen here.
And then it happened here. In ironically, The Tree of life Synagogue.
We are still recoiling from the fact that our sacred space has been invaded. The place we go to strengthen our collective identity, our history and our faith; where we turn to in times of personal crisis, sorrow and joy, has been invaded and turned into a killing field by this wretched imitation of a human being, Robert Bowers.
As soon as this odious event hit the news, the most frequent response I heard was “Donald Trump set the tone for this.”
By laying the blame on someone else’s door, it takes personal agency away from where it directly belongs, on the murderer himself, Robert Bowers, the heinous act and the heinous screed of Nazism which he represents.
This, despite the fact that President Trump’s response to this was immediate and unequivocal, calling it “devastating” and laying bare “the hatred in this country”.
This, despite the fact that President Trump, at an Illinois rally, called this an anti-Semitic act, and “an attack on all of us”, to rousing applause.
This, despite the fact that Robert Bowers, himself, said he did not vote for Donald Trump, or never, “owned, worn or even touched” a “Make America Great Again” hat.
Yes, there are repulsive anti-Semites within the fringes of both parties, lurking among the shadows of the internet. The simple fact remains that within the extremes of both tents, our people are not welcome.
A simple google search to the Southern Poverty Law Center website reveals the bone-chilling fact that there are a plethora of neo-Nazi groups in this country, and these are the classic, right wing anti-Semites, whom one might well suspect that, as individuals, probably feel more comfortable within the republican party.
Yet, the most recent Pew Poll of January 2018 says that an overwhelming majority of republicans as opposed to democrats, support Israel over the Palestinians. The hiatus is staggering, with 79 % of republicans supporting Israel over the Palestinians, and 27% of democrats.
That is Israel– the only explicitely Jewish state—home for more Jews, 6.5 million, than anywhere else on earth.
Within the current House races there are some ominous signs.
In Minnesota’s 5th Congressional district, a Somali born candidate, Ilham Omar is running on the democratic ticket. She recently said , “I am just someone who is a public servant working to create a better society who just happens to be a Muslim refuge”, yet , on November 16, 2012 she tweeted “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them to see the evil doings of Israel. #Gaza #Palestine #Israel”
In New York’s 14th Congressional District, democratic candidate Alexandria Occasio-Cortez has called Israel’s defensive actions on the border of Gaza, where Hamas terrorists are trying to infiltrate Israel with the expressed intent of murdering as many Israelis as possible, “a massacre”, and has asked “Where is the outrage?”, before admitting that “I am not an expert on the issue.”
Rashida Tlaib, the democratic candidate in Michigan’s 13th district, the daughter of Palestinian immigrants, has vowed that she will “absolutely” vote against any military aid to Israel.
However, when one expresses legitimate concern over these statements, one is immediately and conveniently accused of being “Islamophobic”, the ultimate conversation stopper.
Unfortunately, according to the ADL anti-Semitism acts were up by 57% in 2017, over 2016. Most attacks are occurring on college campuses, with a 50% spike in K through 12 schools and on college campuses.
Anti-Semitism is a very virulent virus, for which there is no known antidote, and which has found a welcome home within the extremes of both political parties.
And the leaders of both political parties have a moral imperative to call it out when they see it taking root in their midst.
So please, spare me the sanctimonious, one-sided political lectures. The finger pointing must stop.
We need to find messages of unity, of solace and of hope.
We need to remember that the vast majority of Americans are people of good will who would never countenance any act of ant-Semitism, for one nanosecond, and who have sent my people thousands of compassionate messages of friendship, solidarity and support.
We need to remember that most Americans had ancestors who came to these shores in pursuit of the very same thing our fathers and grandfathers sought: religious freedom. And that religious liberty is one of the core principles upon which this great nation was founded.
Let’s try to use this time to concentrate on what unites us, as a people, which is far greater than what has ever divided us.
Sarah N. Stern is Founder and President of the Endowment for Middle East Truth, an unabashedly pro-Israel and pro-American think tank and policy institute in Washington, DC.Read More →
We at EMET are profoundly saddened and chilled to the core at the deadly massacre at the Tree of Life Congregation in Pittsburgh and we offer prayers of solidarity, strength, and support to the Squirrel Hill community, to all of those who suffered the loss of family members and friends, and pray for the recovery of all those injured.
Throughout the Diaspora, our synagogues serve as our links to our collective history, our identities, and our faith. They serve as our sanctuaries, our places to go in times of personal joy, crisis or sorrow. They are our original “safe spaces.”
All of this was shattered on Saturday morning when Robert Bowers entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in a leafy suburb of Pittsburgh, shouting, “All Jews must die,” mowing down 11 people at worship. This attack was not only an attack on the Jewish people, but it was also an attack on the very values that make the United States the exemplary nation that it is. It is an attack on one of the core, founding principles of the United States, religious freedom.
We are painfully aware that on the extremes of both sides in this country, our people are not wanted. Anti-Semitism is a rather virulent virus, which has found a welcome home in both the extreme right and the extreme left. There are people who lurk in the margins of our society, in the shadows of the internet, who spew their hateful creed.
In its most common form today, anti-Semitism in America is found on our college campuses, where Israel is held to a standard that no other country could possibly be asked to live up to, particularly when faced with the same difficult conditions that Israel must live under. Swastikas and apartheid walls have sprung up on virtually every campus from Columbia to UCLA and hundreds of points in between. It has become far too acceptable for university administrators to give a “pass” to hateful symbols and slogans aimed at intimidating and chilling Jewish students, under the cover of free speech, something which they would never allow when aimed at any other minority group.
At anti-Israeli rallies throughout our college campuses, students are often heard shouting such expressions as “Zionist pigs,” “Hitler was right,” and even “Jews to the ovens.” The very symbol of the swastika, which has proliferated throughout our college campuses, represents the goal of the extermination of Jews.
This creates an environment that is hostile to Jewish students, and teaches non-Jews that a certain form of hatred in our country, anti-Semitism, is acceptable “free speech.”
What gives us some solace in this sorrowful time is that opposed to Europe of just one generation ago, and the world of radical Islam, including Hamas-controlled Gaza, where the massacre of Jews is exhorted, glorified and incentivized on a daily basis, the Pittsburgh Synagogue Massacre was condemned by the vast majority of Americans, from the President on down.
The vast majority of people in this country are people of good will, but our history has taught us that we must remain forever vigilant of those who lurk in the margins of our society, and of the growing problem of anti-Semitism on our college campuses, which has taken the 21st-century form, of anti-Zionism.
Let us hope that we can make something positive out of the recent horrific events in Pittsburgh and work together as a community to prevent the proliferation of this latest form of anti-Semitism that our students must confront on our college campuses.
About The Endowment for Middle East Truth
Founded in 2005, EMET’s mission is to educate policymakers in Washington and the general public about the importance of Israel to the United States in their common struggle against radical Islam. For more information, please visit, http://www.emetonline.
(Washington, DC, September 26, 2018) – Today, the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET) praised the Department of Education (DoE) for taking steps to enforce a law that could help curb many professors and programs on university campuses, and teachers of the K-12 level, that espouses anti-American, anti-Israel, and at times, anti-Semitic viewpoints, in violation of federal law.
Some grants to universities and schools funded under Title VI of the Higher Education Act (HEA) have contributed much to the belief that America’s support for Israel is a strategic liability and a source of why the US is resented in the global community. EMET has long been working on Capitol Hill and beyond to reform Title VI of HEA to ensure that the biases are put to an end. Under the Obama Administration, DoE had willfully ignored the law in place to prevent these biases, and further enabled the politicization of Title VI programming.
All of this is about to change.
The Higher Education Act was originally signed into law on November 8th, 1965, to strengthen the educational resources of American universities and colleges and to provide financial assistance to students in postsecondary and Higher Education. HEA was a later version of the National Defense Education Act (NDEA), signed into law in 1958 by President Eisenhower. The original intent of Title VI of the NDEA was to prepare our students to serve the national security needs of the United States by funding foreign language and area studies programs at universities, particularly with respect to combatting the Soviet threat at the time. The area studies programs are known as National Resource Centers (NRCs). In 1965, Title VI legislation was included into HEA, most recently reauthorized as the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) in 2008.
For the 2014-2018 grant cycle, more than $13.4 million of federal grant money was awarded to 19 Middle East NRCs under Title VI of HEA. Grants for the next cycle will be allocated this fall.
Unfortunately, the original legislative intent of Title VI of HEA had been turned on its head. Research shows that many Title VI-funded NRCs – currently at 100 institutions of higher education across the U.S. – are replete with an anti-American and anti-Israel biases. Specifically, many Middle East NRCs, including at such prestigious institutions as Columbia University, Georgetown University, Princeton University, and Yale University, among others, are replete with Title VI-supported faculty and programs that advance the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement; whitewash terrorism and radical Islam; and create a false narrative of U.S. foreign policy towards the Middle East.
Also, problematic, under Title VI, NRCs are required to extend their activities by creating programs of “public outreach,” including workshops where K-12 teachers are trained. Many of the workshops, and their lesson plans on the Middle East, are heavily influenced by Saudi money, reports show. Some of the training materials include essays of Islamist radicals who advocate for terrorism; textbooks painting Israel and the West as colonial powers; and lesson plans that promote Islam, but criticize Christianity and Judaism. As a result, Title VI-funded Middle East studies biases are trickling down to America’s most vulnerable and impressionable youth.
In 2008, EMET was instrumental in amending Title VI of HEA to require the need for “diverse perspectives and a wide range of views,” within the U.S. taxpayer-funded Title VI programs. Despite EMET’s exhaustive efforts in 2008, the U.S. Department of Education, which provides these grants to the universities, as well as the recipients of the grants themselves, have, up until now, ignored their statutory requirements to provide “diverse perspectives.”
Since 2008, EMET has been the only organization on Capitol Hill regularly raising awareness about the abuses of, and calling for legislative changes to, Title VI, through one-on-one meetings with Congressional staffers and Members of Congress. EMET has also met with the Department of Education, a number of times, and with a senior member of the White House, to discuss the issue.
Thanks to EMET’s work, the Department of Education is now giving more consideration to the 2008 amendments of “diverse perspectives and a wide range of viewpoints” when evaluating applications for funding under Title VI of HEA. The Fiscal Year 2018 application for grants for NRCs states that it is an “Absolute Priority” that applicants fulfill the 2008 amendments, by providing “….(1) an explanation of how the activities funded by the grant will reflect diverse perspectives and a wide range of views and generate debate on world regions and international affairs; and (2) a description of how the applicant will encourage government service in areas of national need, as identified by the Secretary, as well as in areas of need in the education, business, and non-profit sectors.”
Sarah Stern, founder and president of EMET said, “For far too long, students at universities and on the K-12 level have received a steady diet of anti-Israel propaganda as a paltry substitute for a solid education, under some Title VI of HEA programming. After the 2008 amendments — that attempted to remedy the problem – the biases have only gotten worse. The Saudis continue to pour millions of dollars into many Title VI-funded Middle East Centers and faculty, resulting in extreme anti-American and anti-Israel biases in their classroom instruction and materials that they use in their teacher-training workshops, which are mandated by the Title VI legislation.”
Stern added, “I applaud the Department of Education for taking the matter of the misuse of funding under Title VI of HEA seriously, and for taking the significant step of emphasizing the “diverse perspectives” requirement, which may help remedy the abominable political biases within some of the programs. When the universities who have applied for these taxpayer funded grants in this cycle are turned down, they will receive an explanation as to why. If it is because they have not demonstrated a capacity to teach from a diversity of perspectives and a wide-range of viewpoints, perhaps they will be more careful to hire faculty who are not quite so monolithic in their biases against the United States and the State of Israel. The change in the anti-American and anti-Israel atmosphere will not happen overnight, but incrementally, we hope that this will create a much less hostile environment in the college classroom.”
About The Endowment for Middle East Truth
Founded in 2005, EMET’s mission is to educate policymakers in Washington and the general public about the importance of Israel to the United States in their common struggle against radical Islam. For more information, please visit, http://www.emetonline.
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Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Following President Trump’s historic announcement recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and PA President Mahmoud Abbas waged a political and ideological war against the State of Israel. During a speech in Egypt, Abbas claimed that the Palestinians were the “original Canaanites” and lived in Jerusalem before the Jews. Abbas also called Trump’s statement “sinful” and “ill-fated,” and Fatah called for a “day of rage,” with approximately 800 Palestinians rioting as a result.
Abbas’ vilifying words and the Palestinians violent riots are only some of the political tactics the PA uses to undermine the State of Israel; another main tactic is the advancement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS). The BDS movement seeks to delegitimize, demonize, and ultimately destroy the State of Israel by using political and economic warfare, and false accusations. The BDS movement uses gross lies to demonize the Jewish State of Israel – such as by falsely comparing Israel to apartheid South Africa – to win activists on its side. Yet the movement is inherently anti-peace, while opposed to any type of negotiations with Israel or Israelis, even if it is for the benefit of the Palestinians, and often uses-anti-Semitic tactics to delegitimize and undermine Israel’s existence as a sovereign state. The global BDS movement also gains support from various parts of the international community, including some European countries and the United Nations. To what extent is the PA’s use of political warfare a threat to the State of Israel? Who are the main drivers and supporters of the BDS movement? And what steps should Israel take to combat these threats? Please join us as we hear from Dan Diker as he explores these questions and more.
About Dan Diker
Dan Diker is a Fellow and Senior Project Director at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs where he heads the Program to Counter Political Warfare and BDS. In 2011, Dan co-founded the Global Coalition for Israel (GC4I) together with Brig Gen (res) Yossi Kuperwasser, former Director General, and Ministry of Strategic Affairs. Has authored several books on BDS and the anti-normalization movements including: BDS Unmasked, (2016), Defeating Denormalization, (2017), and Students for Justice in Palestine, Unmasked, (2017) Dan is also a Research Fellow at the International Institute for Counter Terrorism, IDC Herzliya, where he hosts Counter Terrorism Today on IDC International Radio. Dan appears as a Middle East and BDS commentator on news networks such as Al Jazeera, BBC, Fox, China CCTV, CBN , ILTV, and Russia Today. Dan Diker previously served as Secretary General of the World Jewish Congress, the global diplomatic organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries. Dan received a BA Cum Laude from Harvard University and studied toward his MBA at the Harvard Graduate School of Business before earning an MA in Government and Counter Terrorism Policy, Summa Cum Laude, from the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya. He is married with 5 children and immigrated to Israel in 1990. He can be followed on Twitter @dandiker84.Read More →