Israeli Students at Columbia Blast Administration for Ignoring Antisemitism
JNS.org – Israeli students at Columbia University in New York City are outraged at the university administration for failing to respond to reports of anti-Israel and anti-Zionist incidents by pro-Palestinian students and groups on campus.
The Columbia chapter of the Students Supporting Israel group issued a statement earlier this week alleging that for six months, university institutions have been ignoring complaints about attacks perpetrated by Palestinian students and their supporters.
The group said in the statement that Columbia University representatives told them as long as the incidents in question did not comprise physical violence, they could not take action.
In one incident, dozens of pro-Palestinian activists surrounded and harassed five Israeli students.
Palestinians or supporters of the Palestinian cause also defaced the Israeli students’ promotional material, such as one poster of Albert Einstein that read: “This is what a Zionist looks like.” The word Zionist was scratched out and replaced with the word “scientist,” a rejection of Einstein’s commitment to the Zionist cause.
The appeal to the university leadership was spearheaded by Dalia Zahger, vice president of SSI at Columbia ,and Ofir Dayan, the daughter of Israeli Consul in New York Dani Dayan.
Zahger wrote in an open letter that after campaigning for six months, the Israeli students realized they were on their own.
Students and their parents have the basic expectation that the university will do its best to meet the laws and standards it dictates, but in this case, the university has failed to do so, wrote Zahger.
Dayan told Israel Hayom that “because of the verbal aggression, which sometimes approaches physical violence, we have people who are afraid to be pro-Israel. They just know that the university won’t defend them. It’s bizarre and shows contempt for the lives of students.”