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January 18, 2016 2:54 pm

Anti-Israel Fanaticism on Oberlin Campus Creating Hostile Environment for Jews, Says Active Alumnus

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Oberlin College. Photo: Wikipedia

Oberlin College. Photo: Wikipedia

Pro-BDS activists are largely responsible for creating a hostile environment for Jewish students at Oberlin College today, a 1986 Oberlin alumnus told the blog Legal Insurrection. 

“Over the last few years, I have been hearing reports of anti-Semitism at Oberlin, primarily related to an active and hostile pro-BDS student group, ‘Students for a Free Palestine’ …. I began to engage with pro BDS students and alumni on an Oberlin Facebook page, where I personally experienced hostility in response to my views on Israel, including anti-Semitic attacks,” the student told Legal Insurrection.

“On the same site, I established contact with Oberlin students and alumni who were also troubled by the hostility of the pro-BDS members of the group. I began to gather information on specific pro-BDS occurrences at Oberlin through personal accounts from former students, from the campus rabbi, and from news reports,” said the alumnus.

The comments came after the alumnus organized signatures from more than 200 Oberlin alumni, mostly having graduated between the 1970s and 1990s, on an open letter to Oberlin President Marvin Krislov and the college administration, calling on them to launch an investigation of antisemitism and form a panel for the victims of antisemitic abuse (specifically by BDS activists) to share their experiences and a task force with the Hillel rabbi to make a “plan of action to address the current crisis.”

“At the beginning of December 2015, I decided to create an online forum for Oberlin alumni who shared my concerns, including former students who had authored the newspaper articles describing anti-Semitism at Oberlin that I had read,” the alumnus said. “We drafted an open letter to Oberlin President Krislov and the Trustees ….Today, we have 209 signatures.”

“We have also begun to document all incidents of anti-Semitism at Oberlin by collecting testimonials from alumni and current students. As of today, that list is 5-pages in length and includes physical intimidation, verbal harassment, and vandalism. I will be meeting with Oberlin President Krislov on January 26 when I will be presenting that list to him,” the alumnus said, according to Legal Insurrection.

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