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March 12, 2014 12:39 pm

Northeastern University Bans ‘Students for Justice in Palestine’ for Intimidating Students

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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Boston's Northeastern University, whose logo reads "Light, Truth & Courage."

Boston's Northeastern University, whose logo reads "Light, Truth & Courage."

Northeastern University’s Center for Student Involvement suspended campus group Students for Justice in Palestine for at least a year and barred its current executive board from serving on any future board in the organization. Its members must also complete training led by university administrators as a condition for reinstatement.

According to a copy of a letter sent by the Boston school’s Director of the Center for Student Involvement, Jason Campbell-Foster, and published by blogger Elder of Ziyon, the group broke university policy with a campaign that resulted in the intimidation of students.

“You have not shown a concerted effort to improve your practices and educate your members on how to properly operate your organization within the boundaries of university policy,” Campbell-Foster wrote.

In a separate letter, Northeastern’s Associate Dean for Cultural and Residential Life, Robert Jose, wrote to the group that, “We do not condone any behavior that causes members of our community to feel targeted and/or intimidated.”

Last month, the group distributed notices across Northeastern that tried to mock an eviction notice that might appear on an illegal Arab house construction in un-zoned areas that Israel demolishes. The gimmick has become a popular awareness-raising tactic by the group’s national chapters, but, at Northeastern, some students felt intimidated by the notices and reported them to the school’s administration.

On the website of Northeastern’s Hillel, a statement read, “Rather than seeking to prompt dialogue, the fake eviction notices alarmed and intimidated students in their homes, in clear violation of Northeastern policy. We are in communication with Student Affairs regarding this incident, who have been quick to respond to student concerns. The administration is working with the Northeastern University Police Department to conduct a thorough investigation.”

In the past, Northeastern’s administration has been criticized by students for allowing rampant anti-Semitism by faculty on campus.

Last year, a 12-page report from the Zionist Organization of America, cataloged a litany of student horror stories, including intimidation, class harassment and teachers indoctrinating an alternative reality version of Middle East and Israeli history. The report focused on Professor of International Affairs Denis Sullivan, now Co-Director of Northeastern’s Middle East Center for Peace, Culture and Development.


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