Israel boosters threaten civil rights claim against Brooklyn College and suggest barring student activists from campus

ActivismIsrael/PalestineUS Politics
on 31 Comments
Sher
Neil Sher threatened to file a civil rights claim against Brooklyn College over the ejection of four students from the Brooklyn College BDS panel last week. On his right is CUNY trustee Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, who suggested that groups like Students for Justice in Palestine may have to be “excluded” from organizing on campus (Photo: Alex Kane)

In a press conference that mixed Israel advocacy with denunciations of Brooklyn College, a group of right-wing supporters of Israel threatened to file a Title VI civil rights claim against the college over the disputed claim that four Jewish students were ejected without reason from an event on the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. One of today’s speakers, a trustee at the City University of New York (CUNY), also suggested that student groups like Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), which organized last week’s panel event with Omar Barghouti and Judith Butler, may have to be “excluded” from campus.

Today’s press conference was held at the New York offices of 5W Public Relations, an agency that works with the Israeli government and right-wing Zionist groups like the Zionist Organization of America. One of the students who claims she was ejected without reason from the BDS panel, Melanie Goldberg, is an intern at 5W, though she was not present at the press conference.

The speakers included Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, an anti-Muslim right-wing Zionist who is on the board of trustees at CUNY, Neal Sher, a legal advisor to the Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, and Dovid Efune, editor-in-chief of the Jewish publication Algemeiner

The dispute in question centers around the ejection of four Jewish students from the February 7th event at Brooklyn College. The students who were kicked out claim that they did nothing wrong, were not talking loudly and simply had anti-BDS flyers in their laps. Algemeiner has published audio of the event claiming it proves the students were ejected without reason, but the audio does little to clear up what happened that night. The SJP chapter of Brooklyn College issued a statement today saying, “Our organization, like the BDS movement as a whole, categorically rejects any and all forms of racial, ethnic or religious prejudice and bigotry, including anti-Semitism.” The statement continues:

Four students were removed from the room by security for disturbing others sitting near them. The individuals in question were speaking loudly enough to prompt people sitting around them to ask them to be quiet. They were talking, shuffling papers, and moving noisily around in their seats for several minutes, while Dr. Butler was talking, prompting complaints from other attendees sitting nearby.

Because the acoustics in the room were poor and Dr. Butler was speaking softly, their actions prevented those around them from hearing her well.

The decision to remove these individuals was made by organizers after consulting with security, after they failed to comply with requests to be quiet. Their removal was based solely on the fact that they were disturbing guests around them.

CUNY has now launched an investigation into the incident. Jeremy Thompson, a spokesman for Brooklyn College, also released a statement to Mondoweiss:

Due to the serious concerns raised by our students, [Brooklyn College] President Gould has asked [CUNY] Chancellor Goldstein to order a swift and thorough review in order to ascertain all the facts about the event held at the college on February 7. We look forward to receiving the report and reviewing the findings. In the meantime, Brooklyn College officials are already taking steps to assess what occurred before and during the event in order to identify any procedures that may be improved. Last night, the Policy Council, which includes members of the administration, faculty and students, agreed to review policies related to student-sponsored and co-sponsored events, and to make recommendations for necessary changes. We remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring that Brooklyn College provides a learning environment where all students are free to express their points of view and participate fully in academic and co-curricular activities on our campus.

In the immediate aftermath of the claims that Jewish students were kicked out of the event, the Brooklyn College administration backed SJP students’ accounts. “My understanding is that these students were in the room along with the rest of the audience. From the first speaker they began to speak out, they were becoming vocal and disruptive to the members around them and one of the student organizers of the event went to them and said ‘you really need to be quiet you’re disrupting other people around you,’” Thompson told Algemeiner. “They then did not comply and a couple of police officers asked them to come out into the lobby.”

All the speakers at today’s press conference denounced the BDS movement as hate speech and as anti-Semitic. The BDS panel marked a “black day for Brooklyn College,” said Wiesenfeld, who once told the New York Times that there is no equivalence between the Palestinians and Israelis because “people who worship death for their children are not human.” Wiesenfeld made that statement in the context of his ultimately unsuccessful bid to deny playwright Tony Kushner an honorary degree over comments critical of Israel. Wiesenfeld also called Kushner a “kapo.”

The BDS movement is an “anti-Semitic movement,” said Efune, who pointed to Norman Finkelstein’s statements against the movement as proof of its nefarious nature. He continued, “we saw quite some evidence” of “discrimination against Jewish students” at the Brooklyn College BDS panel. Efune also claimed the person who recorded the event for his publication did so at “great risk” and had “courage.”

Wiesenfeld repeatedly claimed that the students were ejected because they were singled out as Jews, despite the fact that there were many Jews in the audience who stayed throughout the entire event. “Students were denied the opportunity to ask questions,” he said, ignoring the fact that two opponents of the BDS movement asked questions to Barghouti and Butler. “These Jews were selected because they had notes…they were evicted as Jewish students.”

Wiesenfeld expressed disappointment that what went on at the University of California, Irvine–a reference to the disruption by student activists of Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren–has now come to Brooklyn College. “To now see this type of degradation is heartbreaking,” he said.

The CUNY trustee, who at one time joined the high profile smear campaign targeting Debbie Almontaser, also suggested that groups like SJP and the Muslim Student Association be barred from organizing on campus. Wiesenfeld said that those groups may have to be be excluded because they “stifle opposing opinions” and sometimes act “violently.”

“We’re not talking about academic freedom,” said Wiesenfeld. “What this is is propaganda and propaganda is verboten” in universities. After I asked him whether his suggestion would infringe upon students’ rights to free speech and organize politically, Wiesenfeld said that there are groups in democracies that need to be excluded. He said that some democracies have banned neo-Nazis from gathering, and that the same may have to be done now. Wiesenfeld also said that the Muslim Students Association advocates for “another Holocaust.”

Dima Khalidi, a cooperating counsel with the Center for Constitutional Rights, criticized Wiesenfeld’s suggestion.

“This suggestion reflects the agenda of these individuals and groups actively seeking to shield Israel from scrutiny for its abusive policies towards the Palestinians: they wish to exclude the oppositional voice from the conversation entirely, and they attempt to do so by vilifying these views and equating them with anti-Semitism and racist ideologies. There is no comparison between neo-Nazis, whose ideology is based purely on racism and anti-Semitism and who have a history of violence in Germany especially, and these student groups that advocate non-violently for human rights for Palestinians,” wrote Khalidi in an e-mail to Mondoweiss.

“These attempts to smear student groups as anti-Semitic, violent, or somehow affiliated with groups designated as terrorist, is outrageous. These types of statements create serious consequences for students in this highly Islamophobic post-9/11 environment where Muslims and Palestinian rights activists are being illegally surveilled, discriminatorily singled out, and their First Amendment activities criminalized because of their religion, ethnicity and political views.”

Following Wiesenfeld’s remarks, lawyer Neal Sher said he was looking into whether to file a Title Vi civil rights claim against Brooklyn College. Sher’s organization, the Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, has taken the lead in filing Title VI claims against campuses for allegedly allowing an anti-Semitic environment to flourish at universities. Sher is the lawyer behind a claim currently being investigated by the Department of Education focused on the University of California, Berkeley. Students for Justice in Palestine said in a February 5, 2013 statement that the Sher lawsuit targeting Berkeley “claims campus events like the mock checkpoints associated with Israel Apartheid Week are anti-Jewish, and makes inflammatory statements associating SJP and MSA groups with terrorism.”

Sher criticized the Brooklyn College administration’s statements in support of SJP students’ claims, and said that the administration “shot first and then looked for evidence.” Sher, a former director of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, was disbarred in Washington, D.C. when according to the Jewish Daily Forward he was investigated for “misappropriating funds for personal use” as chief of staff in the Washington office of the International Commission on Holocaust Era Insurance Claims.

Sher said he was closely monitoring the Brooklyn College situation. “It’s very clear that the City University of New York has got a problem,” said Sher. “It’s got a very serious Title VI problem.”

Title VI claims have been a favored tool of Israel advocacy organizations ever since the Zionist Organization of America and others successfully lobbied the Dept. of Education to allow religious groups with shared ethnic characteristics to come under the rubric of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. That paved the way for Jewish students to file complaints alleging discrimination at their schools.

Sher’s threat to file a complaint against Brooklyn College “exemplifies the way that Title VI of the Civil Rights Act has become a tool for Israel-aligned individuals and organizations to try to silence and shut down activism for Palestinian human rights on campuses,” said the CCR’s Khalidi. “Unfortunately, despite the hyperbolic and inaccurate nature of the allegations, the threat of lawsuits and Title VI complaints has a serious chilling effect on the First Amendment speech rights of students expressing political views on Palestine-Israel that conflict with the political orthodoxy on the subject in the U.S. These threats, and the lawsuits and complaints themselves, are also putting severe pressure on universities to curb and otherwise scrutinize the activities of Palestinian rights activists on campus.”

It remains unclear whether Hillel, the Jewish organization that the four students who were ejected are a part of, will back the Title VI threat. Hillel has come out in support of the use of Title VI claims in the past. But the students whose claims have sparked the threat of a civil rights complaint were not at the press conference. Hillel officials also complained that the vociferous opposition to the Brooklyn College BDS panel ultimately backfired–and they distanced themselves from the more right-wing Zionist forces that led the charge against the event. A call from Mondoweiss to the Brooklyn College Hillel went unanswered this afternoon.

31 Responses

  1. dbroncos
    February 14, 2013, 8:01 pm

    The Zionists, with their McCarthyite tactics, are demonstrating some of the ancillary benefits of the BDS campaign. The speeches by Butler and Barghouti could have been delivered quietly enough and gone unnoticed by those who were not in the auditorium to hear them speak. But the Zionists had to make a federal case out of it and they still won’t shut up. The should have listened to Bloomburg: “Just shut up and this will go away.” But thy just can’t help themselves. Good. Keep talking, Ziozs, keep talking.

    • jimmy
      February 14, 2013, 9:30 pm

      they just can not ever shut up…and people are really getting sick of it….

      they have not shut-up over Iran in 30 years….

      I think Phil should write op-ed to the NYT…and demand to be heard

      • Boston
        February 15, 2013, 6:41 am

        Neal Sher is a criminal. We should make sure that the media and Brooklyn College is aware of this fact.

        The former chief of staff in the Washington office of the International Commission on Holocaust Era Insurance Claims misappropriated funds for personal use.

        The US Office of Special Investigations (OSI), under the direction of Neal Sher, suppressed or destroyed evidence that was exculpatory of John Demjanjuk, who was accused of being Ivan the Terrible of Treblinka. court ruling that “the OSI attorneys acted with reckless disregard for their duty to the court and their discovery obligations.

        In his ruling, Judge Matia also reiterated the words of the Sixth Circuit Court that “the attitude of the OSI attorneys toward disclosing information to Demjanjuk’s counsel was not consistent with the government’s obligation to work for justice rather than for a result that favors its attorney’s preconceived ideas of what the outcome of legal proceedings should be.”

        Even the identification process against Mr. Demjanjuk was confirmed by Judge Matia to be “tainted by the fraudulent acts of the government.” Most damaging to Mr. Sher and his cohorts is additional evidence of the “government’s failure to disclose potentially important evidence directly related to the Trawniki charge.”

        Of course, being a protected Zionist, Sher managed to avoid disbarment and, instead, Demjanjuk was later re-prosecuted on othet trumped up charges

      • David Green
        February 15, 2013, 11:25 am

        And therein lies a tale of the Holocaust Industry:

        link to counterpunch.org

    • Hostage
      February 15, 2013, 4:27 am

      The Zionists, with their McCarthyite tactics, are demonstrating some of the ancillary benefits of the BDS campaign

      Yep, if you were going to choose officials to serve as examples for a Palestinian Title VI discrimination lawsuit, then Trustee Wiesenfeld would be one of your go to guys. Dov Hikind would be another. He and other State officials participated in the discriminatory conduct too, so both the City and the State would be properly included as defendants. See for example United States v. City of Yonkers, 880 F. Supp. 212, 232 (S.D.N.Y. 1995) link to leagle.com

      Kenneth Marcus wrote a law journal article, Anti-Zionism as Racism: Campus Anti-Semitism and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He cited a number of studies, including one by Dr. Gary Tobin and complained:

      Many figures who have the authority to stand up to the perpetrators of anti-Semitic incidents (e.g., administrators, trustees, faculty) fail to exercise appropriate leadership for fear of “rock[ing] the boat,” “appear[ing] overzealous, or interfering with academic freedom.”

      But in this case we actually have a Trustee who has stated publicly that Palestinians aren’t human beings. He also favors “Disparate Treatment” of Palestinians and Jews. If ejecting four Jewish members of the local Hillel chapter from a campus activity warrants an investigation and the threat of a civil rights lawsuit, then excluding the entire chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine from every campus activity should call for the same same response. That sort of thing would be a flagrant example of illegal harassment which is sufficient to effectively deny the victims access to an educational opportunity or benefit. See Davis v Monroe County Board of Education (97-843) 526 U.S. 629 (1999) and the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division’s Title VI Legal Manual. link to justice.gov

      If you read both of those, you’ll see where Khalidi is coming from when she says

      “These attempts to smear student groups as anti-Semitic, violent, or somehow affiliated with groups designated as terrorist, is outrageous. These types of statements create serious consequences for students in this highly Islamophobic post-9/11 environment where Muslims and Palestinian rights activists are being illegally surveilled, discriminatorily singled out, and their First Amendment activities criminalized because of their religion, ethnicity and political views.”

  2. W.Jones
    February 14, 2013, 8:54 pm

    In this case it was the campus police who asked the students to leave, so the university, rather than SJP would be responsible for that, even if their case was reasonable. Furthermore, the plaintiffs would have to show whether the students were disruptive.

  3. eGuard
    February 14, 2013, 9:56 pm

    Neal M. Sher is legal advisor at “L.D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights under Law” (LDB). Also in the legal advisory board is Joel H. Siegal. In March 2011 and in August 2011 Neal and Siegal together filed civil claims against the board of UC Berkeley (including chair Mark Yudof) as attorneys for student Jessica Felber. The complaints went nowhere and were withdrawn last summer.

    LDB director is Kenneth L. Marcus, who has spend years trying to get some sort of discrimination against Jewishness into the “Title VI” (against racism at education institutes). In a video from May 2012, Marcus complains that his work (at the education board) was not continued by his successors there after he left in 20004.

    As of today, there have been no claims of anti-Semitism recognised as under Title VI.

  4. doug
    February 14, 2013, 10:17 pm

    The goal is to continue the basic meme of Jews as victims. Always and forever. It may seem ridiculous but it does work.

  5. doug
    February 15, 2013, 1:35 am

    I should add that while a powerful meme, and understandably so, its power is in decline amongst many Jews not caught up in the more destuctive aspects of Zionism. Hopefully the cycle of victimhood will end someday. As Robert Wright said in signing off his blog on the Atlantic, the single most important thing human beings need to work on is being able to look at things from other’s points of view.

  6. Hostage
    February 15, 2013, 2:01 am

    The BDS movement is an “anti-Semitic movement,” said Efune, who pointed to Norman Finkelstein’s statements against the movement as proof of its nefarious nature.

    Correction: Finklestein did NOT say BDS was either anti-Semitic or nefarious. He observed that Israelis would never agree to repatriate Palestinians in accordance with their acknowledged rights and Israel’s obligations under international law, and that the belief of some BDS leaders that they ever would, amounted to cult-like thinking.

    But in that instance, it was the Israelis who were portrayed as being nefarious, i.e. wicked or criminal. Population transfers, ethnic cleansing, refusal to repatriate refugees, or grant Palestinians equal rights are not merely violations of international law, those are also serious crimes. Finklestein might not have made that clear to Zionist listeners, since he is “not going to be an Israel-basher anymore” but remains “appalled and disgusted”. link to mondoweiss.net

    It’s especially ironic that Kenneth Marcus, the founder of the Louis Brandeis Center of Civil Rights, where Neal Sher works as a legal advisor claims that “denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination is a manifestation of racism or anti-Semitism”.

    He never mentions that the World Court advised that it is the State of Israel which is violating the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and equal human rights. The Court also noted that Israel could not rely on the existence of a “state of necessity” to defend or preclude the wrongfulness of its acts in the territory of Palestine. Elected Israeli officials still deny those rights to Palestinians and make overtly racists statements on the subject. See for example: ‘No place in Israel for Palestine,’ says Naftali Bennett in maiden Knesset speech link to haaretz.com

    • Shingo
      February 18, 2013, 1:35 am

      He observed that Israelis would never agree to repatriate Palestinians in accordance with their acknowledged rights and Israel’s obligations under international law, and that the belief of some BDS leaders that they ever would, amounted to cult-like thinking.

      I seem to recall that he equated this demand – for ROR – with wanting to destroy Israel.

      You know I have the highest respect for you Hostage, but there is no way that Fink’s ataremtd can be spun to sound as sensible.

      • Hostage
        February 18, 2013, 7:59 am

        I seem to recall that he equated this demand – for ROR – with wanting to destroy Israel.

        So what? The Israelis point to the provision of the same resolution which says that only the refugees who are willing to live in peace can return. So the test is that Palestinians have to drop their belligerent claims.

        People need to stop shooting the messenger whenever they don’t like what they hear. Finkelstein said if you want to build a mass movement, you can’t go beyond what the public will accept – and that he believes the public is willing to accept what international law requires. If people ask him what he wants, it’s simple, he wants to enforce international law. That says that the settlements are illegal and that East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza are occupied Palestinian territory.

        International law also reflects the resolution 242 and 338 formulas. They require Israel to give up the occupied territories – lets read it together – in exchange for acknowledgment of its sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence – and its right to live in peace, i.e. its right to exist. That’s also enshrined in existing international law through a multitude of resolutions and treaties which cite those formulas in their terms of reference.

        The public has not been prepared for Israel to simply disappear, like the Union of South Africa, as part of the final solution to an armed conflict. In that case, the UN had adopted a treaty which declared South Africa’s stated domestic policy to be a crime against humanity. They’ve never done that with Israel yet.

        The most we can demand is for Israel to behave like other states. If we want the Jewish state to pass into history, then we’ll have to change international law and our arguments accordingly. There is no call or provision for a single state solution under the existing legal framework.

        I believe that Finkelstein misstates the situation a bit when he said there is no provision for interference in the minority rights situation regarding the Palestinians living in Israel under international law. But he is correct that it isn’t a casus belli or the proper object of unilateral action by other states, including Palestine. I’ve discussed the multilateral minority rights treaties and declarations, the ICERD, ICCPR, ICSPCA, and the on-going role of the PLO and Committee on “the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People” elsewhere. That’s how you cook Israel’s goose on the subject of the refugees and minority rights. You don’t need to hold up progress for the poor folks living in the West Bank and Gaza while that civil process unfolds.

        In the meantime, several of the BDS leaders have signed a manifesto that does not acknowledge Israel’s right to exist. The notion that BDS can be considered neutral on the issue of a 1ss versus 2ss is incorrect. That really only means that you are not actually offering termination of Palestinian belligerent claims against Israel in accordance with resolution 242. Finkelstein points out that you can’t use the law to reach the public or for leverage if you selectively ignore the portions of it you don’t like.

        Fortunately, 242, 338, 1515, and etc. can be repealed in favor of a resolution demanding equal rights and a single state solution. Perhaps they should be, but there’s no broad public support for that idea yet. There won’t be if we continue to disingenuously sugar coat things and say we are neutral on the issue of the 2ss, while claiming among ourselves that such a thing is no longer even achievable. That just makes us (and equal human rights for all) look somehow devious and deceptive in the process. It’s also cult-like thinking to believe all of this is going to just magically happen or that the Israelis don’t correctly view ROR as the same thing as wanting to destroy their Jewish or Zionist state.

        Fortunately the right answer is that international law doesn’t require us to maintain a demographically Jewish state in Palestine. So that’s one less battle for the BDS movement.

  7. Hostage
    February 15, 2013, 4:50 am

    Sher’s threat to file a complaint against Brooklyn College “exemplifies the way that Title VI of the Civil Rights Act has become a tool for Israel-aligned individuals and organizations to try to silence and shut down activism for Palestinian human rights on campuses,” said the CCR’s Khalidi. “Unfortunately, despite the hyperbolic and inaccurate nature of the allegations, the threat of lawsuits and Title VI complaints has a serious chilling effect on the First Amendment speech rights of students expressing political views on Palestine-Israel that conflict with the political orthodoxy on the subject in the U.S.

    You do realize that the Supreme Court has ruled that there is a private right of action under Title VI to file a federal lawsuit over exactly that sort of harassment?

    Try to remember that the 1st Amendment imposes a limitation on the power of the government, not the students. The same principle applies to Title VI. It was, and still is intended to protect our civil rights from official forms of government discrimination, harassment, and intimidation.

    • marc b.
      February 15, 2013, 9:59 am

      hostage, you make a valid point, and i’m no expert, but there are laws which provide 1st amendment protections for individuals against other private parties, the so-called anti-SLAPP laws. but those are state laws, not a federal protection. NY has an anti-SLAPP statute, but it looks like its available application is pretty narrow.

      • Hostage
        February 15, 2013, 2:27 pm

        hostage, you make a valid point, and i’m no expert, but there are laws which provide 1st amendment protections for individuals against other private parties, the so-called anti-SLAPP laws.

        No, I’m talking about a Title VI federal lawsuit for intentional harassment by school system officials, including the one here who has openly claimed that Palestinians aren’t people, and who have the illegal intent of excluding Palestinian or Arab Muslims from educational benefits or activities. The Justice Department Manual explains that statements by decision makers, including members of a trustee board, can be used as circumstantial evidence of discrimination or disparate treatment.

        The California Advisory Board report to the Office of Civil Rights on campus anti-Semitism cites the Supreme Court test for harassment from Davis v. Monroe County Board of Education (1999). That was a Title IX lawsuit, but the Justice Department Title VI Legal Manual explains the overlap, interplay, and relationship between the two types of complaints. The same elements are used to establish harassment or a pattern of harrasment.

        That’s what these Zionists groups and officials are doing at this point. There is a clear pattern and practice developing with the involvement of the Brandies Center.

  8. hughsansom
    February 15, 2013, 7:39 am

    It’s well past time that wild assertions like Jeffrey Wiesenfeld’s be treated as actionable slander. Blithely asserting that members of a certain group, like the Muslim Students’ Association or BDS, can be (and is intended to be) both intimidating but also career-destroying. An academic career for Norman Finkelstein was destroyed by such claims. The Israel fanatics attempted to destroy the careers of Juan Cole, but he was already tenured at the University of Michigan when the fanatics torpedoed Yale’s offer to him.

    Wiesenfeld’s charges leveled at someone just completing a degree could easily derail an entire life of work. The victims of these charges need to see some victories in court against such slander.

    The problem, of course, would be the difficulty in bringing such a case. Courts are not the a-political, neutral environments America’s hagiographers like to pretend. Judges needn’t be biased (though certainly can be) to be susceptible to pressure exerted through the media.

    One way or another, the Alan Dershowitzes and Jeffrey Wiesenfelds need to learn that idly, maliciously trying to tar and feather critics of Israel as anti-Semitic or worse (e.g., advocating “another Holocaust”) has consequences.

    • Hostage
      February 15, 2013, 2:33 pm

      It’s well past time that wild assertions like Jeffrey Wiesenfeld’s be treated as actionable slander.

      Perhaps, but its certainly time to insist under the terms of Title VI that the New York educational system get rid of any city or state official who has stated that Palestinians aren’t people. Allowing this guy to serve as a Trustee doesn’t even pass the laugh test.

  9. amigo
    February 15, 2013, 8:38 am

    These zionist mouthers are priceless.

    Talk about shooting oneself in the foot.

    Ya gotta love it.

  10. red-jos
    February 15, 2013, 8:40 am

    The zionists involved in the Brooklyn anti-bds activities should be asked to explain the story of the prisoner in an Israeli prison – one of the most secure and suicide-proof prisons in Israel – how a 34-year-old Australian man hanged himself and was supposed to have committed suicide.

    This is the story of Prisoner X and all in Israel and Australia are running for cover.

    And this is a Jew locked up in a high-security prison in Israel?

    Interesting that the Dershowitzes and others have remained shtum about this episode so far!

    Mannie De Saxe, Melbourne

    • Ellen
      February 15, 2013, 12:30 pm

      red-jos, most Israeli’s believe the young Australian who took on Israeli citizenship and worked for the Mossad was a traitor to Israel and deserved jail and death. But how a traitor and for what?

      Interesting and sad as he never had a chance to defend himself.

      It seems that he became a liability for the Mossad as his cover was being blown and they had to get rid of him somehow.

      Pollard’s handlers regret they did not get the chance to take him out and move fast enough just as the US FBI was closing in on him. That is on record. And from their point, what they would need to do.

      Maybe the Mossad just thought it would be cleaner to secretly lock him up and do away with him or make sure he did away with himself.

      I wonder what his family thinks and why they remain silent?

      • Ellen
        February 15, 2013, 1:53 pm

        Update: Why they remain silent? If this report out of Israel is true, the family has received damages from the government:

        link to israelnationalnews.com

        Payoffs(Damage compensation) like this are always connected to legal gag orders.

        And what would happen if the family did not take the money?

  11. piotr
    February 15, 2013, 10:01 am

    In the meantime, liberal Zionists despair, the success of the right kills the two state solution, oppression deepens and White House does nothing. Roger Cohen wrote unusually biting editorial:

    The Success That Failed
    By ROGER COHEN
    Published: February 14, 2013 25 Comments

    The most progressive and innovative Palestinian thinker on a Middle East peace settlement has been steadily isolated over the past several years. Undercut by Israel, undermined by his own people’s factionalism, unable to meet even once with President Obama, this dynamic Palestinian leader is now close to the end of his rope.

    There is a lot in the editorial about escalating repression and the policy of rejection by Netanyahu, and, obliquely, disinterest by Obama.

    I think that the time is coming for change. Brooklyn extremists will not carry the day, Jewish community becomes split at long last and American establishment is starting to face the issue. But it will not be easy, liberals are yet to face what it will take to make a change, i.e. sanctions. But in an incremental step, BDS is “odious” to extremists and “legitimate point of discussion” to liberals. Once again, history is made in Brooklyn.

    The Battle of Long Island, also known as the Battle of Brooklyn or the Battle of Brooklyn Heights, fought on August 27, 1776, was the first major battle in the American Revolutionary War following the United States Declaration of Independence, the largest battle of the entire conflict, and the first battle in which an army of the United States engaged, having declared itself a nation only the month before.

  12. piotr
    February 15, 2013, 10:06 am

    By the way, the sheer idiocy of the lawsuit threat bespeak of an environment of political supremacy. The pendulum of history sometimes proceeds like that: the weak have to think to survive, the strong do not have to.

  13. tidings
    February 15, 2013, 10:20 am

    I hadn’t known the extent to which activists in the environmental and Transition movements are being attack in the social media. In this post, Rob Hopkins of the Transition initiative shares such experiences and how they handle them. I hope they are helpful.

    link to transitionculture.org

  14. Les
    February 15, 2013, 11:41 am

    “Gould has asked [CUNY] Chancellor Goldstein to order a swift and thorough review”

    Is Gould turning this over to the wrong person?

  15. Obsidian
    February 16, 2013, 10:16 am

    ” but the audio does little to clear up what happened that night. ”

    The audio shows that the anti-BDS group were quiet and respectful.

    Silent protest by Jews is verboten on Brooklyn College campus.

    They were gagged by the pro-Palestinian BDS organizers.

  16. Hostage
    February 16, 2013, 6:24 pm

    They were gagged by the pro-Palestinian BDS organizers.

    All the accounts that I’ve read indicate the police working security asked them to leave and escorted them out. Has anyone interviewed them about the reason they did that?

  17. Shingo
    February 18, 2013, 1:36 am

    Someone should show Wiesenfeld a few photos of Neo Nazis waving Israel flags to shut him up.

  18. kma
    February 20, 2013, 3:37 pm

    this part is hilarious:

    “Wiesenfeld expressed disappointment that what went on at the University of California, Irvine–a reference to the disruption by student activists of Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren–has now come to Brooklyn College. ‘To now see this type of degradation is heartbreaking,’ he said.”

    heartbreaking! Students For Justice In Palestine get taken to court and expelled any time anyone does anything to protest or disrupt an event related to Israel. maybe the zionists should simplify Title VI and just be more direct about it: “anything that happens on campus, just punish SJP”. Wiesenfeld is laughing, not heartbroken!

Leave a Reply