The Ugly War Against Israel on College Campuses

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Members of Brooklyn College’s Palestinian Club recently held an Israel bashing political street theater performance during their annual “Israel Apartheid Week” hate-fest. They staged a mock Israeli “checkpoint,” acting out the “brutal Israeli occupation” (sic) with students dressed as IDF soldiers harassing keffiyeh-clad “Palestinians” who were on their knees, blindfolded.

Alarmed Jewish students wondered whether to complain or do something in response. Rather than counter this with the customary tepid response from Jewish students groups with the lighting of candles and displaying photos to memorialize Jewish victims of suicide bombing attacks, Wiesenfeld advised that a bolder approach was necessary. Those who seek Israel’s destruction love to see dead Jews. We need to answer them with some factual street theater of our own to show why there are checkpoints. Jewish students should dress up as Shahids and strap on mock suicide belts. Acting out scenes of bloody carnage, they would yell out “Allahu Akbar!” as they pulled the cord. Holding up pictures of burnt out buses, bombed pizza parlors, terrorist carnage, and signs saying, “Hamas,” Hezbollah,” “Peace without Israel,” would make a hard-hitting counter-statement. But Hillel and other Jewish student groups shied away saying they wanted no part of such provocation. One brave Brooklyn College student invited David Horowitz, a controversial conservative speaker and the Jewish groups still declined to support. This sad state of spinelessness and acquiescence must be overcome if we hope to challenge the propaganda war against Israel on campus.

Wiesenfeld described a particularly ugly episode he was involved in earlier this year when he spoke out candidly at a CUNY Board of Trustees meeting in defense of Israel. He objected to the awarding of an honorary degree to playwright Tony Kushner, on the grounds that his anti-Israel views crossed the line from mere criticism of Israel to blood libel against Israel and the Jewish people. Kushner serves on the board of the radical leftwing organization, “Jewish Voices for Peace” which promotes the BDS campaign for the destruction of the State of Israel. He called Israel’s founding a “mistake,” and accused Israel of “ethnic cleansing” of Palestinians. This accusation was a false libelous charge. Other board members agreed with Wiesenfeld’s objection and the motion to grant the honorary degree was defeated and further discussion was tabled. In response to the torrent of protest against the board’s decision and Wiesenfeld in particular, the board hastily scheduled an executive meeting and reversed their decision allowing Kushner to receive the honorary degree.

The ensuing backlash, gained momentum even after the board reversed course. After Kushner fired off an angry letter defending himself as the victim of a “vicious attack,” ironically claiming he is a supporter of Israel and that Wiesenfeld is a right-wing extremist, the New York Times, New York’s cultural and political elites and the entire academic community rallied in Kushner’s defense and directed their wrath at Wiesenfeld. It wasn’t surprising that the virulent anti-Israel CUNY faculty union, the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the American Association of University Professors, and other radical leftwing academic associations stood up for Kushner and branded Wiesenfeld with the customary “McCarthyism” accusation. The academic world has united in censorship and punishment of a brave soul who dared to challenge the accepted anti-Israel orthodoxy on campus. But what was particularly disheartening was the silence from the major Jewish organizations, some of whom even joined the fray in demonizing Wiesenfeld.

It’s shameful that the organizations that are tasked with defending the Jewish people, have succumbed to the comfort zone of silence in the war against Israel that emanates from campus and trickles down through the citizenry. When Wiesenfeld refused to accept the status quo and stood up bravely to defend Israel, all Jewish people and organizations should have rallied to his side instead of yielding in submission to the widespread bashing of Israel. Fortunately there were a few good Jewish organizations that defended him in the storm over the Kushner degree that raged in New York. Pro-Israel groups such as Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (SPME), StandWithUs, Camera, ZOA, and NCJA stood with Wiesenfeld and fired off letters and press releases to the media, wrote articles and took to the blogosphere. It’s a hopeful sign that more and more Jews and pro-Israel organizations are cropping up and actively joining the war of ideas against the repeated lies and demonization of the State of Israel. Wiesenfeld sets a heroic example as a brave fighter single-handedly facing the rising tide of anti-Semitism and the deafening silence from fellow Jews. He called on the supporters of Israel in the Jewish community to follow his lead.

The program came to a close with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous words when he equated anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism:

“How easy it should be, for anyone who holds dear this inalienable right of all mankind, to understand and support the right of the Jewish People to live in their ancient Land of Israel. All men of good will exult in the fulfillment of God’s promise, that his People should return in joy to rebuild their plundered land.

This is Zionism, nothing more, nothing less.

And what is anti-Zionist? It is the denial to the Jewish people of a fundamental right that we justly claim for the people of Africa and freely accord all other nations of the Globe. It is discrimination against Jews, my friend, because they are Jews. In short, it is anti-Semitism….

Let my words echo in the depths of your soul: When people criticize Zionism, they mean Jews–make no mistake about it.”

Freedom Center pamphlets now available on Kindle: Click here.  

Phil Orenstein is the Machine Shop Manager at Orics Industries Inc., NY., formerly an adjunct lecturer on Computer Aided Manufacturing at Queensborough Community College. He is a political activist who blogs at and a member of the National Conference on Jewish Affairs.

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  • flipside

    Yes, the anti-Israel Hitlerjugend are running amock. Itr is what happens when parents fail to spank.

    • Ken

      I see the Anti-Semite is back.

      • aspacia

        He slithered out from the swamp.

        • Flipside

          No. That’s one of your anonymous blogger friends who wants to be me.

    • Ted G

      Hey Flipside, you ol' MB troll you…puked out much propaganda lately!

    • KarshiKhanabad

      This time you got it right, Herr von Flippout. All that's missing now are swastika flags and the Horst Wessel song. Oh, and in Europe they're telling Jewish faculty to take a powder to appease the Muslims.

      Jew-hatred is Jew-hatred and it's not just for "Aryans" anymore. Mein Kampf in Arabic is a Middle East bestseller. Glad you finally got the Nazi-Islamist connection. Hitler and his pal Haj Amin al-Husseini are laughing in hell.

  • Andy Gill

    This article makes a very important point. Oil money is buying Islamofascist influence in American universities, and its time for Jews to fight back.

    The idea of dressing up as suicide bombers is a terrific one. It reminds people of the death and destruction reaped all over the world by Islamic terrorists. The equation of extreme Islam with terrorism and mass murder must be emphasised again and again, and threats against Israel countered with reminders of 9/11.

    • effemall

      No, it's time for us non-Jews to stand up and fight for Israel, the only Democracy in the Middle East. It is time to stand up and fight the Trojan Horse MSA and its backers. Fight them with boycotts, fight them in the courts and fight them on the streets with blackjacks. Because once they get the Jews they'll come after all other non-Muslims.

      • Indioviejo

        affemall I agree that it is time to be pro-active in this fight. I believe there is a silent majority willing to stand up with Israel even if some Jews will not. It is a matter of individual responsibility and conscience. Christians are being massacred in the Muslim world to the worlds indifference, but some of us will stand for what is right.

  • Anamah

    Dear friends here my gift about the non existence of Palestine country, never before in history. I hope you are going to enjoy it.
    If you are so sure that "Palestine", the country was founded many centuries or generations and registered throughout recorded history, I hope you are able to answer the following questions:
    When was it founded and by whom?
    What were its borders?
    What was its capital?
    What were its major cities?
    What was the basis of its economy?
    What was its form of government?
    Can you cite at least one Palestinian leader before Arafat?
    Was Palestine recognized by a country whose existence, at that time leaves no room for interpretation?
    What was the language spoken in the country "Palestine"?
    What religion which prevailed in the country "Palestine"?
    What was the name of its currency?
    Pick a date in the past and answer what was the rate of change of the Palestinian currency against the dollar, yen, franc, etc..?
    Since there is no such country today, explain why it cease to exist?
    If you are weeping for the fate of this so-called " Palestine", answer: At what time this country was proud and independent?
    If the people that you, by deception called as "Palestine" was more than just a collection of people out of Arab countries and if they had had a definite ethnic identity that assures the right of self-determination, why they did not try to be a country independent Arab before the devastating defeat in the Six Day War?
    I hope you do not confuse Palestinians with Philistines.
    Change etymology for history will not work.
    Tokyo, November 2TH, 2002

    • aspacia

      You might want to watch Danny Ayalon's refute to Arab claims:

      • intrcptr2


        I like the way he presents himself, and the material.

    • Snorbak

      I have put the same questions to a number of anti-Semitic fools & when they realize that they cannot provide a rational answer, I am usually the recipient of a torrent of childish abuse & labeled, of all things, a bigot or racist, go figure! . The irony being that these same people proclaim to be "educated".
      I remember an incident that happened at work several years ago whereby I defended Israels right to exist to a Muslim client that resulted in a please explain with the CEO after a formal complaint against me. No relevance was associated with the vile hatred that spewed from the "valued client" against not only the Jews but also myself. The client went after me personally when she realized that she could not explain "Palestine's" lack of history prior to 1967.
      Further, during WW2, whereby the Muslims sided with Germany's Axis forces, the Palestine Regiment, attached to the British Army, was made up exclusively of Jewish volunteers. The Palestine Post was a Jewish newspaper & The Palestine Symphony Orchestra was entirely Jewish. No anti-Semite can explain these facts.

    • Phil

      You could use the exact same argument to defend the noble European colonisation of North America.

  • River to River

    The leftovers don't love the pale stains. They just hate the Jews.

    The muzz don't love them. One of their leaders just called them 'sons of whores.' They just hate the Jews.

    The invented people don't even love themselves. Death is their greatest wish. They just hate the Jews.

    Hashem feels the opposite way.

    • Philosopher

      which muslim leader called the Pals "sons of whores"? What is so pathetic about the situation is that without Israel, the Pals would have no health care, no electricity, no food, — nothing. Israel has options other than the military but won't use them. The Pals hate the Israelis and all Jews yet they'd be nothing without the Jews. The Pals very identity depends on the existence of the Jews.

  • oldtimer

    Hitler's Germany all over again.

    • aspacia

      Yes, I fear we may see another Holocaust.

  • hammar

    Thousands of years before even a single thought or word was ever spoken about islum
    God gave the land of Canaan to Abraham from the Mediterranean sea to the Dead sea and Jordan river.
    Most people never learned their faith or read the Bible….maybe its time to start understanding what the Word
    speaks before they start reading the koran in schools.

  • Tpartywarrior

    Read David Horrowitz's book "Unholy Alliance: The Radical Left and Islam"

  • American Thinker

    The "Apartheid" campaign that Pamela Geller runs is an excellent campaign against such allegations. Showcasing various Israeli Arabs is prominent positions in Israel ranging from Knesset members to Miss Israel they SHOW the reality of Israeli Arabs. I $upport this campaign, I hope you will too.

  • mrbean

    If Palestinians were serious about having their own free state, they would start by kicking out Hamas. In place of these terrorists now representing them, Palestinians should send to the negotiating table representatives who believe in and honor individual rights — leaders who plan to establish a free civilized country where violence is abhorred and suppressed. Palestinians should treat Israel as an older and wiser neighbor from whom they have much to learn, rather than an enemy to be destroyed. Only when Palestinians are willing to negotiate with Israel on such terms, will they have earned the right to a state of their own. But they are Muslims, so they never will. The Palestinians in their own words and by their actions are committed to the genocide of the Jewish people and the destruction of Israel, therefore, have foreited their rights to even exist at all let alone be given a UN and US sanctioned terrorist state. __

  • Judah the Hammer

    I always questioned why there was never a well known resistance to what the NAZI's did. In the early days of Jewry, the bible was codexified, and the most essential story to our survival was omitted. The story of the greatest Jewish warrior in history, Judah Maccabee, and his army that embarrassed the Greek oligarchy. Here today just prior to the first night of Chanukah parents should look up the true story of the Maccabeus and teach their children that they should be proud to be Jews, and we don't need to stand by and just take, we do have blood of warriors in our lineage. I hope any Jew that comes across this type of hate will stand up and show exactly why the Holocaust will never happen again.

    • KarshiKhanabad

      For what it's worth, the books of the Maccabees as well as those of Tobit and Esther are found in Catholic Bibles but not Protestant ones. Always wondered why, since these books are historical accounts of real people and events.

      God bless Israel and the Jewish people!

  • LindaRivera

    When the evil ones cry out, "Death to Israel", it is not only Israel's destruction they seek. It is the Death of America. It is the Death of ALL Non-Muslim countries. It is the Death of Civilization.

    • Snorbak

      1st the Saturday people, then the Sunday people….Islam in a nutshell.

  • MethanP

    Jews have historicly hidden. This fact added to the normally liberal stance of much of the Jewish leadership stifles fighting this blatent anti-semitism. People like Thomas Friedman should be defending us. Instead he's one of our most outspoken enemies.

  • LindaRivera

    Mr. Orenstein, please do an article on this!
    Everyone, please send this information to everyone on your e-mail lists! We must not lose the global jihad waged against ALL non-Muslims.The ugly, EVIL WAR Against Jews is not only waged in colleges, it is also maliciously waged in public high schools. A wicked indoctrination of America's young people to HATE Jews and our ally, Israel.

    Please sign the Petition against this horrible crime against innocent Jews!

    The Blaze
    Palestinian Hip-Hop Group Comparing Israelis to Nazis Performs for Oregon Public High School Students.

    The group, named DAM, was invited to perform at Lincoln High School last month. Simply knowing the band’s name, DAM – blood in Arabic and Hebrew – raises serious questions why school officials would position this group in front of impressionable students. Their lyrics raise even more questions about the judgment of these school officials.

    Sponsored by Portland State University Christians United for Israel, the petition states:

    The lyrics demonize Israeli Jews, calling them rapists and Nazis, justifying terrorism against them.. (”You’re a Democracy? It’s more like the Nazis…Your raping of the Arab soul gave birth to your child: The suicide bomber.”) These lyrics are threatening to Jewish students at Lincoln, and do not represent the mainstream opinions of Palestinians and Arab Israelis.

    A sample of the group’s work: one DAM song called “Min Irhabi” or “Who’s a Terrorist?” is filled with anti-Israel propaganda and in-your-face lyrics, that many parents – regardless of their political stripe – would just as soon not have their children get a free helping of at school. With these few lines, one gets the picture:

    Who’s a terrorist? I’m a terrorist?
    How am I a terrorist while I live in my country
    Who’s a terrorist? You’re a terrorist!
    You’re swallowing me while I live in my country
    Killing me like you killed my ancestors […]

    Democracy? I swear you’re Nazis
    With all the times you raped the Arab spirit
    It got pregnant and birthed a boy called the suicide bomber
    And here you are calling us terrorists

    The music video is on YouTube:

    The petitioners say even though students and parents voiced their concerns about the band’s content to the school board, the board went ahead with the performance, “despite the physical and emotional fears of the students.” The petition is asking the school board to apologize and assure students that “events with hate speech will not be tolerated again. Presently, the school board has found no breach in Lincoln High School’s policies on hate speech."

    …It reports the public school’s Arab Studies Program is funded by Qatar Foundation International, which also sponsored the hip hop group’s visit to the high school. Last year, Israeli, Spanish and British newspapers reported that the Qatar Foundation had given money to extremist Muslim cleric Yusuf al Qaradawi who advocates “terrorism, wife beating and anti-Semitism” and that the foundation gives money to the terrorist group Hamas.

  • Ben

    Spiritually poor and lost leftist American Jewry doesn`t understand that by betraying Israel they betray their not only Jewish but their human identity,losing the chance to be not only chosen but simply human creatures.

  • LindaRivera

    We must not lose the non-stop war waged against us! Send this to everyone on your e-mail list!

    Schools are a powerful influence over the minds of America's young people.
    To protect against tyranny, we have separation of church (mosque) and state, yet American schools are eagerly cooperating in indoctrinating our children for totalitarian Islam. Winning hearts and minds for Islam. The Koran commands Muslims to conquer all peoples and all nations and subjugate despise, hated infidels under excessively cruel Islamic sharia law where defenseless non-Muslims have no human rights.

    Hamas High School in Florida? Pamela Geller

    Why is a representative of a terror-linked organization, a defender of jihad terror groups and an apologist for Islamic supremacism welcome to speak in public schools?

    Back on December 4, I published at my website the disturbing news of child abuse in Florida public schools: the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) was poisoning the minds of high school students. CAIR was crowing about its propaganda putsch in getting their party line into high schools, but did not name the schools or who spoke. This shows that Hamas-linked CAIR knows what they are doing is subversion, and that the schools would be held accountable.

    However, now we have been able to identify one school — Steinbrenner High School — where a representative of CAIR spoke to students. An informed source tells me it was the notorious Hassan Shibly.

    Shibly has a track record of defending jihad terrorist groups and acting as an apologist for the worldwide jihad and Islamic supremacism.

    The email exchanges between CAIR and Steinbrenner High School are revealing. Kelly Miliziano, a World History teacher at Steinbrenner, wrote this in a November 14 email: "Every year I invite a representative from CAIR to speak to our AP World History Students." After CAIR-Tampa responded favorably, Miliziano wrote again: "Over the years I have had many speakers from CAIR come to my classes, and it has been such a good learning experience for the students." She added: "I would prefer to have a speaker for each period of the day so that students can really interact with the speaker and ask questions."

    And work the phones: Brenda Grasso, Principal email: Phone 813-792-5131

    Kelly R. Miliziano, Ph.D. (extended the invitation to CAIR) Social Studies Department
    Steinbrenner High School – (Rt 2)
    5575 W. Lutz Lake Fern Rd.
    Lutz, FL. 33558
    813 792-5131 Ext. 264
    813-792-5131 Ext. 264
    813-792-5135 (Fax)

    Hillsborough County Public Schools

    MaryEllen Elia, Superintendent

    901 E Kennedy Blvd
    P.O. Box 3408
    Tampa, Fl 33601 USA

    phone: (813)272-4000

  • Edward

    From the River to the Sea,

    paleswine Will Never Be!

  • Moishe Pupick

    Tu., 12/20/11 common era

    It's 1939 all over again. The Jews in the Democratic party will likely vote for Obama 2 because they worship affirmative action, yet more "gun control," and multi-culturalism. Rabbi Meier Kahane, obm, knew what was coming over 40 years ago. The ADL can't do squat.
    More Jews should join the NRA!

  • Fred

    Excellent article. If I was back in college I would go for their throats. Kick ass is the only thing these savages understand. I cannot understand
    why some Jews voted for our "Muslim Freak" illegal President. Are they nuts?

    He hates Jews (per so called "Rev. Wright), hates whites, hates Israel, has a phone Birth Certificate, suspicious SSA # and more. Why would
    anyone vote for this affirmative action (which is illegal also) Muslim?

  • BS77

    Nothing new here…..most colleges are shallow leftist indoctrination centers…to incubate leftist lemmings…

    .Israel is NOT the problem in the MIddle East.

  • NotaBene

    The boy who cried Holocaust.

  • gary fouse

    Among the Jewish organizations that won't confront anti-Semitism on campus by the pro-Palestinian forces are the Jewish Federation and the ADL. They don't want to address it. At least that is the case in Orange County, California when it comes to UC Irvine.

    Gary Fouse
    Adj teacher

    UC Irvine

  • Fred Dawes

    Why don't the Jews here get off the pot and go after the monkey muslims? all the ADL AND JDL Is doing is getting donations and hand outs, get your Butts in the ringt and do your job!!! Beat butt jews and people will help you do away with muslims here inside the USA.

    • guest

      You're right about the ADL, but not about the JDL.

    • Snorbak

      With regard to your question, I don't believe that you will have to wait very long. With the increasing animosity aimed at Israel & to a degree more serious than 1946/67, from its immediate neighbors, specifically, Hamas, Hezbollah, Fatah, Jordan, Egypt & Iran's proxy Syria, I believe war will soon be forced upon Israel.

  • Brujo Blanco

    We must understand that words mean something. When the Islamofacists say they are going to kill the Jews that is what they mean. That is their plan. These people are acting on their plan. Do these liberal Jews understand that they will not be spared because they betrayed Israel or the USA? Theses whackos plan on killing the Jews and then the Christians. The left is dangerous and violent.