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EXCLUSIVE: Audio Reveals Brooklyn College Misled Public on Eviction of Jewish Students From BDS Event (AUDIO)

February 12, 2013 6:29 pm 27 comments

Karen L. Gould, the president of Brooklyn College. Photo: CUNY.

An audio recording obtained exclusively by The Algemeiner appears to indicate that Brooklyn College representatives misled the public in their account of events that took place at Thursday night’s BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) event aimed at Israel and sponsored by the University’s Political Science Department, where four Jewish students were evicted by security personnel.

On Friday, Brooklyn College explained the incident by accusing the students of disrupting the event in no uncertain terms, with spokesperson Jeremy Thompson telling The Algemeiner, “From the first speaker they began to speak out, they were becoming vocal and disruptive to the members around them and one of the student organizers of the event went to them and said ‘you really need to be quiet you’re disrupting other people around you.’ They then did not comply and a couple of police officers asked them to come out into the lobby.” Thompson also added that school officials in attendance, including Brooklyn College Vice President Milga Morales, confirmed this account.

The four students — Melanie Goldberg, Ari Ziegler, Yvonne Juris, and Michael Ziegler—contended, however, that they were thrown out for possessing BDS fact sheets. Goldberg told The Algemeiner the day after the event that “One of the SJP (Students for Justice in Palestine, which organized the event) members came over and got really close to my face and told me to give him the sheets, or he would call security. I told him I would not. We were simply taking notes so we could ask informed questions like we were encouraged to do by the school and Political Science Department.”

When Goldberg then asked Brooklyn College Vice President Milga Morales  to intervene, as she was nearby during the incident, she declined to do so.

“I told her this was a clear violation of academic freedom, she just looked at me and said ‘this is their event, they can do what they want,’ which is not true, the political science department co-sponsored it,” Goldberg recounted.

The student who confronted Goldberg was later identified as SJP member Carlos Guzman.

In an opinion piece he wrote for The New York Daily News, Ari Ziegler also vehemently denied the school’s allegations:

“As far as I can tell, what happened is that a student who disagreed with my views called security and told them to remove me. The fact is that I was barred from asking questions in an open forum, from trying to understand an opposing viewpoint,” he wrote.

“The college has said that ‘based on official reports, they were being quite disruptive.’ This is a complete fabrication,” Ziegler added.

The audio file makes plain that the school was falsely accusing the students, and/or greatly exaggerating the claims made by SJP members that the students were being disruptive throughout their time at the lecture. The file captures the first speaker, Judith Butler, and terminates at the ejection of the four students. At the 28:14 mark Melanie Goldberg can clearly be heard saying, “I’m not allowed to hold a pamphlet?” This appears to contradict the claim made by Brooklyn College that the students were simply asked to be quiet and did not comply, and one made by an SJP organizer that they were asked to quiet down and stop passing fliers between themselves before they were ejected. At the end of the audio file you can hear Goldberg saying, “This is an oppression of freedom of speech, this is an oppression…”  no time before that, despite the fact that according to The Algemeiner’s source the recording device was positioned only two rows in front of the Jewish students and was able to clearly pick up the voice of Judith Butler several rows ahead, does it appear that any disturbance was being caused. In fact, the first time a voice is clearly audible besides that of Butler’s is when Melanie Goldberg asks about the pamphlet, 28 minutes into the event.

Yesterday CUNY Chancellor Matthew Goldstein issued a statement in which he said an investigation into the incident would commence. “There were reports that some said they were asked without cause to leave the event.  If this were true, it was wrong and we need to understand exactly what the circumstances were.  At the request of President Karen L. Gould, I have asked General Counsel and Senior Vice Chancellor for Legal Affairs Frederick P. Schaffer to quickly investigate these allegations. This investigation will be coordinated by CUNY’s Office of Legal Affairs, working with an independent consultant, and charged with reporting directly back to me,” Goldstein said.

From statements made today by Brooklyn College, it appears the school has backtracked somewhat from its earlier statements—statements that were given with the backing of anonymous school officials and the vice president of the school.

The school told The Algemeiner in a statement Tuesday that “Given the serious concerns raised by the students, President Gould has asked the university to conduct a thorough independent review of the college’s actions in order to ascertain all the facts. We stand by our previous statements that the college should be a place where all may express their views. If we learn that these students were denied that opportunity without cause, as they allege, the decision to have them removed will have been inappropriate and the college will issue a formal apology.”

The audio of the Brooklyn College BDS event can be heard below:

27 Comments

  • Three outstanding facts
    1)An event calling for the destruction of Israel was sponsored by Brooklyn “college”, and not by a student organization. Therefore, the administration of Brooklyn “college” is officially on record as supporting the destruction of Israel. This is antizionist
    2) Jews were excluded from this event, and was witnessed by VP Milga Morales, who by not intervening, demonstrated approval of Jewish exclusion. This is not just antizionist, but antisemitic as well
    3) Brooklyn “college” tried to cover this up

    Necessary steps to be taken
    1) Public funding to institutions that espouse anti-semitism must end.
    2) President Gould and VP Morales must resign effective immediately
    3) Employers should seriously consider whether applicants who have degrees from Brooklyn “college” truly are college educated.

  • So refreshing to know that no one give a hoot about the 70,000 plus muslims that are being tortured and slaugthered by fellow muslims in syria. yes, let’s boycott israel, folks and your women soon will be wearing burkas.

  • B’SD
    The Jewish students musty have more rallies to go after BDS and run Gould the backstabber to Jews and Israel out JDO says on theri website.

    Recently an Al Qaeda Islamic Nazi was arrested from that group and was attending Brooklyn College Politiccal Science Dept.

    Read more about this http://www.jewishdefense.org

  • The proceedings must be recorded, video and audio, to prove or disprove the charges.

    And the “political science” department should be a sub-department of the Psychology department.

  • Steve Manhattan

    then gee Lance, your buddy Bernie the attorney was apparently way off on his “rule” regarding Zionists since I don’t seem to remember Jewish or pro Israel students shouting down anyone. And what’s Bernie’s on on these junior Islamic fascists? Anything goes as long as they wear a kaffiyeh?

  • The comments remind me of what my Jewish friend, Bernie the Attorney said about typical Zionist discourse. He said it usually falls into what he calls “the 180 rule” (i.e. acussing others of your own tactics).

    • Liar (or at least malicious antagonist, fabricator), with a rich creative fantasy, pants on fire!

    • lancebuster,

      Is that like Islamists accusing Israelis of hijacking four passenger planes on 9/11?

      Or Islamists accusing Israelis of bombing London transport on 7/7/05?

  • Judith Butler erred in stating that Israeli Arabs cannot serve in the military. They are not required to serve but may if they choose to do so. Shocking that given her anti-Israeli activism she would be so unaware of so basic a fact.

  • What goes around comes around. Take courage my Jewish friend.

  • The Jewish students should institute a massive suit against the school, its admin, and BDS and the members involved for depriving American citizens of their Constitutional right, and harassment. And, in this process, they should seek to remove the foreign heads of BDS from US shores.

    Further, the school should be deprived of US taxpayer public funding, and the administrators involved, dismissed.

  • This audio is self explanatory, Jews are right- Brooklyn College and SJP are wrong.

  • Pure, blatant Anti-Semitism. This is worse than anyone imagined. Stuff lawsuits are made of.

  • A formal apology would not be enough. These students should sue CUNY. Even Alan Dershowitz thinks so. See his analysis at gatestoneinstitute.org.

  • I was there, sitting a few rows in front of the disruptors. It is very rude and disruptive to come to an event and distribute fliers while someone is speaking. I don’t understand why its a surprise they were asked to leave.

    • A little rich coming from intolerant BDS supporters who take every opportunity to barge into Jewish/Israeli cultural events and Jewish-owned businesses like thugs

    • There were anti-Israel students at the David Horowitz event screaming out catcalls repeatedly, but campus security refused to ask them to leave. Handing out leaflets is zero compared to the violent catcalls at the Horowitz event, but campus security and Karen Gould refused to ask the disruptive students at the Horowitz event to leave. The students at the Barghouti event were not giving out leaflets. They merely held the leaflets in their hands. It seems like Brooklyn College is like Nazi Germany–anti-Semitic protestors at the Horowitz event must be allowed to stay, but Jews at the Barghouti event are asked to leave for holding notes.

    • Sarah Williams

      There is nothing rude or disruptive about passing fliers back and forth (not “distribute” as you spin it). It’s certainly a lot less rude than Palestinian activists shouting down pro-Israel speakers (UC Irvine, USC, UC Berkeley) and in several cases, blocking doors and knocking people down. Free speech is an American right, as is the right to assemble, and engage in academic discussion. If you don’t like it, move to to an Arab country where you’ll be more at home with unquestioned idolatry of Palestinianism and unfettered Jew-hating.

    • BDS is notorious for disrupting political and cultural events.

  • A formal apology???!!! Too little, too late. What an empty thing. Student should boycott the graduation ceremonies and poli sci majors should change their majors or transfer to another school.

  • It’s good they are saying they are sorry…maybe the snow will lighten up and kids can go back to school! :) To those with wisdom..

  • Brooklyn College has become a place where the Martin Heideggers of the teaching profession can be comfortable professing their admiration for the beauty of Hitler’s hands. Clearly the administration is a group of dhimmis who obey the wishes of a gang of Muslims who revere a sociopath named Muhammad who personally decapitated 900 unarmed Jews at Quarayza.

    • Not quite, Richard. Muhammad did not personally decapitate anyone. Even the final decision for execution was made by someone else. This did not happen at a place called ‘Quarayza’. Bani Qurayza was the name of the Jewish tribe in question. A better argument is to say that, despite being God’s Prophet and the overall ruler of Medina, he did nothing to stop the executions. As in other cases, his evident lack of compassion makes him suspect as a religious leader. Was he a sociopath? Surely that’s something we can’t be sure of.

  • jerry jacobson

    It seems like Brooklyn College is sending a message to Jewish Students. We will tolerate you if you are passive and accept our very liberal left wing views. JUST DON’T BE VOCAL. Keep your opinions to yourself.
    Perhaps people should give their money to other educational institutions.

  • THEY ALL MUST PAY. THE AGRESSOR MUST PAY THE PRICE – ALWAYS!

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