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October 10, 2023 4:40 pm

University of Virginia Pro-Palestinian Group Plans ‘Teach In’ on Supporting Campaign Against Israel


avatar by Dion J. Pierre

The bodies of people, some of them elderly, lie on a street after they were killed during a mass-infiltration by Hamas gunmen from the Gaza Strip, in Sderot, southern Israel, Oct. 7, 2023. Photo: REUTERS/Ammar Awad

Following the Hamas terrorist group’s invasion of Israel, the University of Virginia’s chapter of the group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is set to hold on Thursday a “teach in” to show how supporters “can be in solidarity with Palestinians resisting occupation.”

In an advertisement for the event posted on social media, SJP invites people for a “teach in and demonstration about the current situation in Gaza, the events and history that led to this moment, and a discussion about how” they can support “Palestinians resisting occupation.”

The gathering came after the SJP chapter on Sunday issued a statement arguing that Hamas’ terrorist campaign against Israel over the weekend will help force a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“The events that took place yesterday are a step towards a free Palestine,” the University of Virginia’s SJP chapter said. “They reflect the power and resilience of the Palestinian people in the face of 75 years of continued brutal oppression.” The group, which also accused Israel of ethnic cleansing and “mass killings,” added, “We stand in solidarity with Palestinian resistance fighters and all oppressed people around the world seeking freedom and a better world.”

Since Saturday, Hamas terrorists have murdered over 900 Israelis, wounded thousands more, and taken dozens back to Gaza, the enclave controlled by the Palestinian terror group, as hostages. As part of Hamas’ invasion, terrorists reportedly slaughtered several babies at a kibbutz among other documented atrocities.

The SJP chapter is not the first anti-Zionist group to pledge solidarity with Hamas in recent days. Thirty-one student groups at Harvard University issued a statement blaming Israel for the attack and accusing the Jewish state of operating an “open air prison” in Gaza, despite the Israeli military having withdrawnfrom the territory in 2005.

“We, the undersigned student organizations, hold the Israeli regime entirely responsible for all unfolding violence,” said the Harvard Palestine Solidarity Committee. “In the coming days, Palestinians will be forced to bear the full brunt of Israel’s violence.”

Additionally, several chapters of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at schools such as Brown University, the University of Maryland, Tufts University, and the University of California-Los Angeles have described the attacks as a form of “resistance,” demanding others accept “our right to liberate our homeland by any means necessary.”

Before the war broke out, the Anti-Defamation League warned in a new report that anti-Zionist campus groups are employing a strategy of vilifying Zionists and supporting terrorism against the Jewish state. The report said support for terrorism was also common on college campuses, including among SJP chapters.

“Many expressions of support for violence/terror were accompanied by the slogan that ‘[armed] resistance is justified when the people are occupied,’ which is often used by activists to promote all violence against Israel, even against civilians, which they argue is a noble cause in the anti-colonial struggled, despite Jews (like Palestinians) being native and indigenous to the land,” the ADL said.

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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