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There is no “ethnic cleansing” going on in Israel. Two million Israeli Arabs are not being driven out of the country. In Gaza, it has been a different story. After 2005, all Jews were uprooted from Gaza by the IDF itself, vainly hoping to buy years of peace with the people of Gaza. And if a Palestinian state should ever come into being, you can be sure it will be ethnically cleansed by the Muslim Arabs, and made Judenrein. Israel, of course, has no intention of doing anything similar in any part of the Land of Israel.
Some pro-Palestinian groups claim that Israel has been engaged in “ethnic cleansing” in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of east Jerusalem. In fact, in Sheikh Jarrah there has only been the eviction for cause, after much litigation lasting years or even decades, of some Arab tenants who for years have simply refused to pay any of the rent owed to the Jewish owners of the property. Palestinian propagandists have insisted that Israel is engaged in an attempt at ethnic cleansing. but these are perfectly ordinary landlord-and-tenant disputes, fought over a failure of the Arabs to pay rent due, that are finally settled in the courts In fact, what is seldom stated is that the Israeli landlords have in many cases offered to cancel all past rent due, provided that the Arab tenants agree to pay rent from now on. The Arabs have refused even those generous offers and, as a consequence, have finally been evicted after years of dragging out litigation, as they continued to remain on the property without paying the rent due.
There is a bullying aspect to these political statements — that, to repeat, have nothing to do with their academic responsibilities — being made public. Senior faculty set down their views; students and junior faculty, fearing possible retribution, do not dare to declare their opposition. And with these corrosively critical, even antisemitic accusations against Israel, Jewish students, whether Israeli or not, will feel a great unease. More on this can be found here: “University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Academic Department Deletes Letter to Students Accusing Israel of ‘Genocide,’” by Dion J. Pierre, Algemeiner, January 5, 2024:
According to documents shared with The Algemeiner, since Hamas’ Oct. 7 massacre across southern Israel, extreme anti-Zionism, as well as platforming of individuals who have promoted antisemitic conspiracies and tropes, has exploded at UIUC. Two months after the attack, the Women & Gender in Global Perspectives Program added two virulently anti-Zionist panelists, Susan Abulhawa and Laila El-Haddad, to what was scheduled to be a one-on-one conversation featuring a pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian speaker.
The Women & Gender in Global Perspectives Program at UIUC has gone even further in revealing its anti-Israel animus after the attack on October 7 — that is, after the unparalleled display of sadism and barbarism by Hamas. The Department organized a “conversation” about the Gaza war that was supposed to be between two speakers — one pro-Palestinian and the other pro-Israel. Instead, two more people were added to the program, both of them Palestinians and “virulently anti-Zionist,” so that the planned ”conversation” went from being one-on-one to a three-on-one gang up.
Abulhawa has accused Israel of committing “a dozen kristallnachts [sic],” referring to the infamous pogrom carried out against Jews in Nazi Germany in November 1938. Abulhawa’s viewpoints are so controversial that a sponsor of an Australian festival she was scheduled to participate in pulled its support. After Oct. 7 she also rationalized Hamas’ massacre on her Facebook page….
Abulhawa, whom the Women & Gender in Global Perspectives Program invited to participate in a public “conversation” about the Gaza War, has been so extreme as to justify Hamas’ barbarism — its acts of rape, murder, mutilation, and torture — but this was not seen as disqualifying her from appearing. She even had the chutzpah to accuse Israel, in its attempts to defend itself, of committing “a dozen kristallnachts.”
I failed to notice any similarity between how the Israelis behaved toward Palestinians these past three months, and how the Nazis behaved on November 9-10, 1938. I didn’t see the IDF going around smashing tens of thousands of Palestinian-owned shops, beating to death many hundreds of innocent Palestinians, setting on fire thousands of mosques. No one has confirmed a single instance of such atrocities to support Abulhawa’s charge. Nonetheless, she was invited to speak at UIUC by the Women & Gender in Global Perspectives Program, the department’s members apparently unconcerned with how women are treated in the Palestinian society Abulhawa so stoutly defends.