Huh– Yale to close anti-Semitism shop


A year back we did a few posts on the Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Anti-Semitism. Well my friend Abe Foxman informs that Yale is shutting the initiative down. No funding? And Jeffrey Goldberg, whose concern about anti-Semitism motivated his political engagement, is moving from the Atlantic to Tablet, a Jewish online publication. These are signs of the gradual retreat of the Holocaust inside the American political mind, and our weariness with the portrayal of Jews as victims.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today said the decision by Yale University to shut down the Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Anti-Semitism (YIISA) at the end of July was “particularly unfortunate and dismaying” given the persistence of anti-Jewish hatred in the United States and around the world.

Update: The Yale Daily News reports that the program is being shuttered due to a lack of student interest, and its failure to “to meet high standards for research and instruction”:

The decision to end the program has met criticism from groups across the nation that show support for Jewish people, such as the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League. But Green, a political science professor, said YIISA generated little scholarly work that earned publication in highly regarded journals, and its courses attracted few students.

“YIISA suffered the same fate as other initially promising programs… that were eventually terminated at ISPS because they failed to meet high standards for research and instruction,” Green said, citing the Center for the Study of Race, Inequality and Politics as another example of an underachieving program.

Failure to meet high standards for research? I wonder if hosting a conference with sessions titled “Self Hatred and Contemporary Antisemitism,” and “Scourges and Their Audiences: What Drives Jews to Loathe Israel Publicly and What To Do About It?” had anything to do with it?

21 Responses

  1. Thomson Rutherford
    June 8, 2011, 9:04 am

    … given the persistence of anti-Jewish hatred in the United States ….

    ??? I think Mr. Foxman has been smoking something that’s not good for him.

    • Citizen
      June 8, 2011, 10:39 am

      Why, yes, I see the persistence of anti-Jewish hatred in the USA, both in Obama’s rubber-stamping of Israeli wishes, and, most blatently, by the
      whole US Congress giving 29 standing ovations to the Palestinian leadership. I also see such blatent anti-semitism in the Republican run House list of proposed spending cuts–which include cutting all funds to the International Irish Fund (a whopping 11 million) to help solve lingering issues of the Irish Troubles, and cutting all humanitarian aid to Egypt (but not the military aid to Egypt which cements Egypt’s kissing of Israel), but no mention of the US taxpayer funds going to Israel, including 3 billion annually in direct aid, plus interest charged by Israel on its gift from the US, and 2 billion annually in de facto free grants to Israel, disguised as
      “loan guarantees,” which loans to Israel are always forgiven, and another 1 billion to Israel in the form of US tax exemptions for any organization funneling funds to the illegal Israeli settlements and the Israeli apartheid institutions, and yet another half a billion to Israel by way of state and federal pension fund administrators buying weak Israel bonds with no concern at all for the American pensioners’ best interests.

    • RoHa
      June 8, 2011, 7:59 pm

      “the persistence of anti-Jewish hatred in the United States and around the world”

      Europeans are particularly fierce in their hatred of Jews. They would never elect a Jew as a president or prime minister. They would never even accept a Jew as a leader of a political party or a member of Parliament.

      Similarly, there are no Jews in elected positions in Australia or the USA. Nor do you ever find any Jews in high positions in public service, the justice system, or the military. They are also kept out of finance and industry.

      • Antidote
        June 9, 2011, 7:42 pm

        … and the media and academia.

  2. pabelmont
    June 8, 2011, 9:05 am

    Better if these bozos stopped portraying Jews as (passive) victims and started admitting to some agency in the world, including (of course) agency that brings on hatred/disdain/anger/etc. toward Israelis and their supporters (popularly supposed to be USA Jews).

    And once they admit agency, they could begin to shift gears.

    • Kathleen
      June 8, 2011, 9:37 am


      When you witness what has been defined, labeled as anti semitic over the last 50 years when it comes to criticism of the Israel’s policies and the I lobbies influence sure makes me wonder about what has been defined as anti semitic in the past

      • American
        June 8, 2011, 10:26 am

        I agree.

        If there is so much persistence of anti-Jewish hatred in the United States why do half the world’s Jews live here?
        Isn’t that what Israel is for…to escape anti semitism?
        It’s fund raising nonsense by Foxman.

      • Citizen
        June 8, 2011, 10:46 am

        Yes, American, and why are Israelis getting passports and moving back to hot beds of anti-semitism in Europe? When was the last pogrom in the USA? How long has it been since there were enforceable “no jews” clauses in real estate leases and deeds? Is the proportion of jews in the US government, MSM media, banking & Wall St industry somehow less than 2%, the number reflecting their demography in the US total demography? Or, how about the reverse sort of % of jews , say relating to
        jews in the military, and most especially in the combat units, versus the % of jews in government and think tanks and media, all arguing in favor of anything Israel first?

      • Kathleen
        June 8, 2011, 11:28 am

        great points

  3. Taxi
    June 8, 2011, 9:29 am

    So like is Yale now gonna substitute YIISA for Nakba Studies instead? Cuz THAT would be cool.

  4. Pixel
    June 8, 2011, 9:36 am

    “due to a lack of student interest…”

    A joyous sign of the times, present and future.

  5. eGuard
    June 8, 2011, 9:45 am

    Green said: “YIISA generated little scholarly work that earned publication in highly regarded journals”. Could also mean that the studies concluded that no anti-Semitism was found — end of research.

  6. Kathleen
    June 8, 2011, 10:09 am

    Diane Rehm show focused on the Arab Spring this morning. Call in or send questions [email protected]. You can also put questions up on the blog connected to this show at the Diane Rehm show website

    Oh my goodness Aaron David Miller on the right,Robin Wright the progressive view oy vey
    link to
    The Arab Spring has tested the longtime bond between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia. The country’s wealth and oil supplies have made it a pillar in the Arab world for decades. But its role has changed as pro-democracy demonstrations have swept the region. U.S. support for the Arab uprisings has put the two countries at cross purposes. And the alliance between the two nations complicates U.S. dealings with other countries in the region– from Egypt to Bahrain to Yemen. A look at the U.S. and Saudi Arabia and how its relationship influences the region.
    Robin Wright

    journalist, foreign policy analyst at the U.S. Institute of Peace and the Woodrow Wilson International Center, and editor of “The Iran Primer.”
    Christopher Boucek

    is an associate in the Middle East program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; his research focuses on regional security challenges.
    Ali al-Ahmed

    director of the Gulf Institute
    Aaron David Miller

    a public policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center and former adviser to Republican and Democratic secretaries of state; author of the forthcoming book “Can America Have Another Great President?”

  7. jayn0t
    June 8, 2011, 10:41 am

    Never mind, people who want to write scholarly papers criticising anti-Semitism and avoiding if for Jewish racism can study ‘critical race theory’ at dozens of universities, or ‘hate studies’ at Gonzaga, Washington. It might not be quite up to the standards of Yale, but you can listen to such noted anti-racists as Ken Stern and Hannah Rosenthal tell you that claiming Zionism is a form of racism is… racist. Or read Stanley Fish or any of the other critical race theorists, arguing that Zionism isn’t racist because some of the people who founded it were oppressed. Academia is still safe for Israel.

    • Les
      June 8, 2011, 2:15 pm

      A reminder that recycled anti-Semitic cartoons from WWI era Eastern Europe, with the men now dressed as Middle Easter mullahs rather than wearing yarmulkes are no longer anti-Semitic though they still have the ragged beards, big noses and ears, and swarthy complexions.

  8. Leper Colonialist
    June 8, 2011, 10:45 am

    Given the pronounced tendency of The Israel Lobby to equate any and all criticisms of Israel with anti-Semitism, perhaps the grandees at Yale feared they were bound to go the way of AEI and the Saban Research Center at the Brooking Institution, so, it’s a pre-emptive institutional mercy-kiling, sort of?

    Reading between the lines in Rupert Murduch’s Liudist NY Post, Abby Weisse Schachter certainly leads me to suspect that is her unstated cticism:

    link to

    • Thomson Rutherford
      June 8, 2011, 5:49 pm

      Fron the Schachter article:

      Some suggest that Yale feels it can act with impunity because, earlier this spring, one of YIISA’s most powerful backers died; without his money and influence, the school can rid itself of a politically inconvenient nuisance. Alumni might want to keep this in mind the next time Yale hits them up for a donation.

      (my italics) As at most Ivy League schools, a high percentage of the faculty, student body, and alumni of Yale is Jewish. For this reason, in view of those sentiments reflected in Schachter’s comment above, I think this action by the Yale administration is rather significant. One blow against creeping Zionism in American universities.

      Schachter’s article is also evidence of how overtly in-your-face pro-Zionist, pro-Jewish much of our MSM has become.

  9. braciole
    June 8, 2011, 10:52 am

    Let’s be clear here, the US is still opposed to the democracy movement in the Middle East. It represents too great a threat to its interests. However, the present incumbents in the White House believe that if they openly oppose these democracy movements then it make then appear hypocritical so they are allowing Saudi Arabia and probably Israel to do the heavy lifting and play the “bad cop” role while the White House plays the “good cop” role. Where the corruption is endemic in the police, as it is in reality for the US’ involvement in the Middle East, both the good or bad cop should excoriated.

    Why the White House should worry about appearing hypocritical is beyond me as everyone knows they have taken hypocriticality to an exceptional level!

    • Citizen
      June 8, 2011, 11:40 am

      Braciole, VR thinks none of us here realize what you say because we don’t understand the difference between a state and that state’s government and how both work together in the interest, not of us, but of international finance and international corporate predators.

  10. Oscar
    June 8, 2011, 11:19 am

    Outstanding news. The hateful conference last summer held under the auspices of Yale University should have led to the program being shut down much sooner.

  11. iamuglow
    June 8, 2011, 11:22 am

    Its Telling that the NY post immediately runs a story about this. Just more evidence of how the ADL and parts of the press, like the Post are working in concert.

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