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April 9, 2017 6:41 pm

Jewish Community at Tufts University ‘Deeply Disturbed’ by Surprise BDS Resolution Brought for Vote Days Before Passover

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Tufts University. Photo: Wikipedia.

Jewish student leaders at Tufts University “are working intensely” to combat a surprise boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) resolution initiated by an anti-Israel group for a vote days before Passover, the campus chaplain told The Algemeiner on Friday.

“Yesterday, without any forewarning, Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) put forward this resolution, to be voted on by the [Tufts Community Union (TCU)] student senate this Sunday night,” said the campus Hillel’s executive director, Rabbi Jeffrey Summit, who also serves as a research professor in the department of music and the Judaic studies program.

“The Hillel Jewish community is deeply disturbed by this vote, and by the way the resolution was brought so close to Pesach, at a time when many of our students are home with their families, readying themselves for the holiday,” Summit said.

He added that Hillel has been in close contact with a coalition of Israel-related student groups,  including Tufts Friends of Israel, Tufts American Israel Alliance (TAIA), Tufts Students for Two States and J Street U.

“The phenomenal student leaders have been working very hard to oppose this from the moment we found out,” Summit said, adding that Hillel strongly believes “BDS  is not a productive way to promote any sort of useful dialogue.”

Keren Hendel — a student affiliated with TAIA and Students for Two States — told The Algemeiner, “The pro-Israel community has really come together over this, and I’m impressed by how quickly people have mobilized. Yesterday, the morning we found out, we already had some 50 people emailing senators asking to postpone the vote, expressing to their senators that they want the opportunity to have a voice on this issue.”

Hendel, who said she has personally spoken with a number of representatives and had meetings set up with others, said, “We are trying to explain to senators that days before Passover is not an appropriate time for such a vote, because we need to have a much longer conversation on this topic.”

She added that she believes “the senate is not the best place for that discussion, as its job is to decide on issues central to student life on campus, and this is a larger international issue.”

Both Summit and Hendel expressed optimism that the vote may still be postponed.

“We don’t know if this vote will pass, or what would happen if it does,” Hendel said. “And our goal is to make sure we don’t find out.”

According to an extensive report by The Algemeiner last December, the practice of staging BDS votes on or close to Jewish holidays is a favored tactic of anti-Israel groups.

According to Jewish leaders interviewed by The Algemeiner at the time, the pattern is aimed at preventing Jewish students from countering Israel’s increasingly professionalized, sophisticated and well-funded on-campus critics.

“It’s not a coincidence. It’s not an accident,” the executive director of the Israel on Campus Coalition, Jacob Baime, told The Algemeiner. He said he sees about one example every month of anti-Israel actions on campus timed to the Sabbath or Jewish holidays.

“It is a fairly common tactic,” Baime said. “Israel’s detractors have an interest in shutting out Jewish voices.”

The president and senior senator of the TCU did not immediately respond to The Algemeiner‘s request for comment on the vote at Tufts.

As The Algemeiner reported, last month the Ohio State University undergraduate student government rejected a BDS motion for the third time in two years, while a similar resolution passed at the University of Michigan-Dearborn.

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  • drdov

    Another alt-left university

  • Annette

    Shameful low down move
    But so are the people behind it

  • bigrobtheactor

    Jews get “deeply disturbed”. Not angry. Not enraged. They are too terrified of anger – too terrified of that emotion to recognize and embrace that essential component of basic humanity. They don’t get pissed off, angry or enraged. “Deeply disturbed” is so much safer. No anger even from an assault on their dignity, that essential part of being human and respond like Moses our teacher did when he saw the Egyptian brutalizing his Hebrew brother. .. Oh.. Wait.

  • David Eden

    Is it true that J Street U at Tufts held up pro-BDS signs during the voting process?

  • danehrlich

    The big mistake Jewish college groups make is always trying to defend Israel…They should be using the same tactics as the Palestinians…carry on a a defamation campaign against the campus Palestinian groups…continually expose their records and the record of Arab jihadist groups. They have to destroy the human and civil rights records of these groups.

  • Joseph Feld

    Justice is a basic American and Jewish value. Justice, justice shalt thou pursue. Zion will be redeemed through justice. We should form a Students for Justice in the Middle East. We can protest beheadings, amputations, stoning. We can protest gay underage boys being hanged from cranes, pre-teen girls married to men old enough to be their grandfathers, honour killings of girls who refuse to marry against their will, girls punished for being rape victims, object to female genital mutilation, protest sex slaves — male and female; demand an end to Muslim permission to rape non-Muslim women. We can protest fatwas giving permission to kill writers who criticise Islam, allowing 1,000 or even 2,000 lashes for those who criticise Islam. We can protest where women are banned from driving and can leave their home only with a male family member. Should BDS be applied to such countries?

    • Yvonne Donaldson

      I agree with you. Need to do this.

  • tiki

    Without valid arguments this is the only way to ‘win’ for the community of BDS deplorables.

  • Lonesome Whistle

    Why would you be surprised that SJV (which only wants the peace of DEAD JEWS) would sneak this in right before Passover?

    They didn’t respect Passover. They think Jews stole from Egypt! They support jihad against Jews and Christians.

    SJV and BDS need to be CRUSHED. Their membership needs to publicized and SHUNNED from ever getting work till they denounce their participation in SJV and BDS.

    They are nothing but islamo marxists who support the death of Jews. Add to their list the fake observant Jews in IfNotNowWhen.

    Remember Amelek. THEY ARE ALL AMELEK. Destroy them ,

  • Reb_Yaakov

    I’m surprised the vote wasn’t scheduled for Monday night.

  • El Cid

    “Israel’s detractors have an interest in shutting out Jewish voices.”

    This hatred has a name.

  • bopperman

    Without the Jews , Columbus would not be on the map . I am not a city person , matter of fact I’m out in the sticks , but the Blessing that follows G-ds Chosen People has Blessed me manifold times in my ventures into the blacktop jungle .