CUNY’s new group is pushing Jews to support Palestine, ‘unlearn Zionism’

The left’s “big, fat Jew-hatred problem” made itself known again in the halls of New York City’s institutions of higher education with the recent circulation of a pledge to help the Jewish population “unlearn Zionism.”

The City University of New York (CUNY) is represented by diverse groups on 25 campuses across the five boroughs and among them now is included the “Anti-Zionist Jewish Coalition at CUNY.” Pushing the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, the group issued a letter detailing positions, offenses and demands first reported by the Forward.

Titled “Not In Our Name,” the letter claimed to represent “the Jewish students, staff, faculty, and alumni” of CUNY and asserted that “Palestinian voices are at the core of [their] coalition and [they] stand to uphold their demands for global liberation, resistance by any means necessary, the right of return for Palestinian refugees, the return of all land prior to 1948, and ending the occupation.”

“These principles,” they emphasized, “are not negotiable.”

The first item of their pledge was to “Create networks and programs within the CUNY Jewish population to question, critique, and unlearn Zionism so they may form their own Jewish identity.”

They further went on to attempt and control the language of debate and declared they “Stand against the IHRA (International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance) working ‘definition’ of antisemitism as it is a ploy to demonize anti-zionist and Palestinian freedom of speech against the settler colonial and apartheid state of Israel and does nothing to protect Jewish students.”

It further asserted that as of 2014 CUNY had invested $1,093,900 to companies that support alleged “Israeli apartheid and genocide, including weapons manufacturers such as Boeing, General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon; tech and security companies such as Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, G4S, and Motorola Solutions; and construction firms such as Caterpillar and Cemex.”

One of the non-CUNY signers, Stanley Cohen, was described by Forward as “a lawyer who has represented members of Hamas, Hezbollah and Al-Qaeda, which the American government designates as foreign terrorist organizations.”

Another notable endorsement came from the League of Young Communists and, as the Forward detailed, “the CUNY law school faculty unanimously endorsed a student council resolution to endorse BDS,” the effort to end international support for Israel, in May.

In April, it was reported that NYU law students on the Law Students for Justice in Palestine Board had stated, “Zionism is, by design, an ideology that promotes violence against and hatred and delegitimization of Palestinians. Embedded in the Zionist supremacy narrative is the orientalist, Islamophobic idea that Azkenazi [sic] Jewish whiteness is fundamentally superior to Palestinian lives, culture, and identity,” while one of their members had posted a tweet that read “my love language is marg bar israel,” meaning death to Israel.”

This led a fellow student at NYU to conclude the left, “has a big, fat Jew-hatred problem right in its ideological core.” Like all progressive ideologies endorsed by the left, it has seeped into the education system and is not being renounced by CUNY.

According to the New York Post, a representative for CUNY stated the university is “home to many membership organizations that represent students, faculty, and staff. These groups speak for themselves, and the opinions they express are entirely theirs, and do not represent the views of CUNY or the vast majority of the nearly 300,000 members of our community.”

However, Bronx councilman Eric Dinowitz, head of the Jewish Caucus and chairman of the higher education committee expressed his concerns over the group and stated, “I am deeply troubled by the continued attacks against Zionists and Jewish students.”


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