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December 11, 2015 1:11 pm

New Network of Academics to Provide Resources for Opposing BDS on Campus

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The Academic Engagement Network will work to support Israel and oppose the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the Jewish state on American college campuses. Photo: AMCHA Initiative.

The Academic Engagement Network will work to support Israel and oppose the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the Jewish state on American college campuses. Photo: AMCHA Initiative.

JNS.org – A newly formed network of academics will work to support Israel and oppose the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the Jewish state on American college campuses.

Launched this week, the Academic Engagement Network (AEN) says its group of faculty members and administrators will “anticipate and address anti-Israel and anti-Semitic activities as they arise, counteract the BDS movement, and maintain constructive ties with those on other campuses who are confronting similar challenges.” Additionally, AEN members intend to facilitate “reasoned discourse about Israel on campuses, while protecting and nurturing the exercise of academic freedom and freedom of expression.”

The network’s first project will be the publication of a resource guide titled “Academic Freedom and BDS: A Guide for University Presidents and Administrators,” slated to be released next month.

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“In the face of activities aimed at vilifying Israel, AEN members aim to stir robust discussions relating to Israel on campus, promote and protect academic freedom and freedom of expression, stand for human rights for Arabs and Jews, and engage colleagues and students to better understand complex issues,” Mark G. Yudof, president emeritus of the 10-campus University of California system and chairs the AEN board of advisors, said in a statement.

“College students as well as faculty and administrators are often uncertain how best to respond to BDS efforts,” added Ken Waltzer, AEN’s executive director. “Network members will have access to advice, materials, resources, and best practices elsewhere to assist them to respond constructively to BDS and related initiatives on campus.”

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  • Sherlock Holmes

    Israel should finally publish the Levy Report. No! Not how many students wear Levi Strauss. The Commission headed by High Court Judge Levy found that Israel’s legal claim to much of the West Bank is legal under International Law. The USA Senate has long recognised Jerusalem as the undvided capital of Israel. That includes Senators Barak Obama and Hillary Clinton. The USA Congress has for years called on the President to move the USA embassy to Jerusalem. The League Mandate for Palestine was not fulfilled because of Arab pressure on Britain in the years leading to WW2. So much is ignored as the loony Left support the PLO narrative and most people never hear the Israeli narrative.

    • Michael Mann

      It is not merely “much” of the West Bank that is sovereign territory of the Jewish state but “all” of the territory west of the Jordan River.
      The Palestine Mandate referred to a Jewish homeland “in” Palestine however “in” became “all” once the Emirate (later Kingdom) of Jordan was created in 1922.
      A second Arab state was never contemplated in international treaty west of the Jordan River. This was confirmed by U Charter Article 80.
      Judea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza were under unlawful occupation by Jordan and Egypt respectively until 1967 when Israel repossessed its sovereign territory.
      Arabs were given an opportunity at Oslo in 1993 to negotiate for territory, to come out of the Jewish entitlement, but Arabs have no right to territory west of the Jordan River.

    • Marjorie Stamm Rosenfeld

      In fact, the 1920 Mandate for Palestine reserved all of Western Palestine for World Jewry in recognition of their historic connection with this land. Civil and religious rights of non-Jewish inhabitants were to be upheld. But the Jews, and only the Jews, were given national rights in Palestine–rights which they still have. All of Western Palestine is, legally, the Land of Israel. In fact, Israel’s 1994 peace treaty with Jordan indicates that the eastern border of Israel is contiguous with the western border of Jordan. Here is the language from the Jordanian Government Web site:
      “The boundary Line shall follow the middle of the main course of the flow of the Jordan and Yarmouk Rivers.” (http://www.kinghussein.gov.jo/peacetreaty.html)

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