For Third Time in Two Years, Ohio State Students Reject Anti-Israel Divestment Motion
For the third time in two years, students at Ohio State University (OSU) rejected a motion calling for divestment from companies that engage in business with Israel.
The result of the vote on the resolution, placed on the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) ballot last week and announced Thursday evening, was 4,084: 3,841.
Sponsored by the campus coalition OSU Divest: Buckeyes for Human Rights, it called on the USG to “cease and/or prohibit any investments in G4S, Caterpillar, CoreCivic, The GEO Group and Hewlett-Packard Enterprise until they are no longer engaged in the violation of human rights [of Palestinians] and other practices deemed unethical by the Buckeye community.”
The BDS motion was defeated despite what its opponents claimed was a corruption of the voting process in favor of OSU Divest. According to coalition group Protect OSU, the USG had “unfairly cheated only the opponents of divestment.”
“All [the BDS] campaign does is harm students on campus, while deepening divisions between Israelis and Palestinians,” said Ron Krudo, Executive Director of Campus Affairs at Israel-education group StandWithUs. “It’s encouraging that students ultimately saw through the disingenuous rhetoric of OSU Divest, and voted no.”
In March 2015, a BDS motion at OSU was denied consideration, after it was found to violate the USG constitution and election bylaws; the following year, a similar motion was struck down by USG senators.
The push at OSU is part of renewed efforts by student groups across the US to pass divestment resolutions. As The Algemeiner reported, similar motions are being proposed at the University of South Florida, the University of Michigan-Dearborn, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and Georgetown University.