Amid Temple Mount Tensions, Anti-Israel Student Groups in US Celebrate Palestinian Violence Against Jewish State
Anti-Zionist student groups are taking to social media to celebrate Palestinian violence against Israel as tensions in the Middle East have continued to escalate following the recent terror attack on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign (UIUC) wrote Friday on Facebook that Israel — which it called “[t]he settler colonial regime” — was committing a “slow genocide of the Palestinian people” and called on followers to “Boycott Israel, boycott the genocide!”
The group added, “Long live the intifada!” and, in Arabic, “Long live resistance.”
The post — which also claimed Israel’s placement of metal detectors at the entrances to the Temple Mount after three terrorists killed two Israeli policemen at the holy site on July 14 constituted “a violation of Palestinian sovereignty and a precursor to the further militarization of the occupation” — was liked by Florida State University’s SJP and shared by a Washington University group called Students Against Israeli Apartheid (SAIA).
Hayley Nagelberg, co-president of UIUC’s pro-Israel group — called the Illini Public Affairs Committee or IlliniPAC — told The Algemeiner, “The language of this SJP statement encourages a call for more violence which is inappropriate and irresponsible. While they may choose to focus on this, our message will continue to be in solidarity with the victims.”
“We have seen too much the impact of promoting hate on the ground in the Middle East and feel that publicly encouraging such violence here in the United States is entirely unacceptable,” she continued.
FSU’s SJP also composed its own Facebook posts about the ongoing situation in Israel, including one on Friday in which it stated, “Palestinians and their supporters everywhere are expressing justified rage at this reprehensible and unconscionable display of abusive force by Israeli forces. Muslims worldwide are being asked to stand together in a day of anger for al-Aqsa. اغضب للاقصى (angry to the extreme).”
In another post, the group wrote, “It is unacceptable for Zionism to swarm it like a honeycomb with the technology of Empire.”
SJP UIUC responded to The Algemeiner‘s request for comment over social media with the following statement:
We appreciate your contacting us, but our first priority is to reputable publications without a history of smear campaigning and fear mongering. If you like you can take a ticket and we can get back to you in about 69 years. It’s a long wait, ask any Palestinian, but it shouldn’t be too hard for a Zionist such as yourself. I mean, holding something that isn’t yours for long periods of time. Best regards, Students for Justice in Palestine at Urbana Champaign
SAIA and FSU’s SJP chapters did not respond to requests for comments.
In a statement, Aviva Slomich — the international campus director for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America on Campus — called SJP a “notorious hate group” and slammed it for “promoting the blood libel” that Israel has attempted to change the status quo on the Temple Mount by putting security measures in place.
On Friday night, three members of the Salomon family were killed by a 19-year-old Palestinian terrorist while they were celebrating the birth of a grandson during a Shabbat meal.