Muslim students at California State University, Long Beach have chosen the week of Yom HaShoa to hold their annual protest against Israel, dubbed “Palestinian Awareness Week.”
The events, taking place from April 16-19, are sponsored by the Muslim Students Association (MSA), and coincides today with Yom HaShoa; the somber day in which the six million Jews that perished in the Holocaust are remembered.
The main spectacle during the week-long protest is an enormous anti-Israel wall, dubbed by its sponsors as the “Apartheid Wall,” erected right in the middle of campus. The wall takes turns traveling to the various schools that also host Palestinian Awareness Week at different times of the year. Opponents of the wall call it the “Palestinian Wall of Lies” for its explicitly hyperbolic and deceptive nature.
Other events during the week include anti-Israel propagandist screenings, lectures, and student-hosted talks. One speech seeks to commemorate the “Irvine 11″ — a reference to an incident where a group of Muslim students were arrested at the University of California, Irvine for brashly interrupting a talk being given by Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren on February 8, 2010.
The wall continues to spark heated controversy on campuses across America, with many pro-Israel Jews taking issue specifically with the wall’s assertion that “Zionism is not Judaism.” Due to the relatively small Jewish population at CSULB, the Jewish counter-protest is not manifested to the same extent as those that occur at, for example, UCLA. Still, the event calls into calls into question the degree to which Jewish-American students are inclined to stand up for themselves.
One unidentified student passing by the wall expressed his aversion to the affair by stating loudly, “What a waste of wood!” and continuing by spitting contemptuously a few feet away.