New campaign uses racist posters to target Palestinian campus activists by name

Activism
on 18 Comments

Palestinian rights activists on American college campuses have become the target of posters that attempt to smear them as supporters of violence, with a new round of posters calling out students and teachers by name.

“Do you want to show your support for HAMAS TERRORISTS whose stated goal is the elimination of the Jewish state?” one poster asks. Then, posing as the national Palestinian rights group, says “Join us! Students for Justice in Palestine.” The poster drives home its point with a cartoon of a man wearing a kaffiyeh, pointing at the viewer like Uncle Sam.

The posters are the work of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, a pro-Israel group that has a history of attempting to intimidate Palestinian activists, especially those in academia. Some of the smears use terms like “Hamas BDS,” smashing together the name of the Palestinian political party and the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign, which seeks to protest Israel economically and earned the ire of anti-Palestinian groups like Horowitz’s and others.

The posters also come amid rising Islamophobia and attacks on Muslims, both physical and verbal, tied to the rise of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who has made suspicion of Muslims a centerpiece of his campaign. Horowitz isn’t doing anything to help, Palestinian activists say.

“Horowitz, a driver of the anti-Muslim movement in the U.S., has taken credit for this and previous campaigns attacking students and faculty. While Horowitz is viewed as an extremist, his tactics are in line with broader efforts by mainstream pro-Israel advocacy organizations and U.S. government officials to suppress speech in support of Palestinian rights,” Palestine Legal said in a statement. “The Horowitz posters fall in line with a pattern of widespread intimidation and censorship of students and faculty in the U.S. who speak out for Palestinian rights, a pattern that Palestine Legal has documented.”

According to Palestine Legal, the schools where the posters have appeared are the following: Brooklyn College (CUNY), San Diego State University, San Francisco State University, Tufts University, University of California Berkeley, University of California Irvine, University of California Los Angeles, University of Chicago, University of Tennessee Knoxville, and Vassar College.  

The identities of the individual distributors of the posters remain unknown, but the images, including the hashtag #JewHate list the names of different Palestinian rights activists.

Electronic Intifada reported that San Francisco State University had released a lukewarm response to the incident, which some feel qualifies as a hate crime.

“We do not endorse the message, and consistent with principles of free speech, we believe that the most powerful response to speech that divides or degrades people is more speech which promotes inclusion, advances human dignity, and encourages mutually respectful actions and communications,” SFSU communications officer Elizabeth Smith told the site.

SFSU president Leslie Wong decried the posters as a “bullying” tactic, but did not name Horowitz’s organization.

“Well-funded groups are trying to undermine us because they know if the discussion happens more and more people are more likely to join the world community in supporting Palestine,” SFSU professor Rabab Abdulhadi, named in the poster, told EI. 

About Wilson Dizard

Wilson Dizard is a freelance reporter and photojournalist covering politics, civil rights, drug policy and everything else. He lives in Brooklyn with his bicycle, camera and drum set.

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18 Responses

  1. Kay24
    October 27, 2016, 10:02 am

    It is time the Palestinian students fought the poster war with equally filthy posters. There is so much material to work with – the zionists have occupied and stolen for decades, killed civilians by the thousands, and there are pictures of children being pulled out of the rubble when homes were attacked by Israel’s precision bombs. They would make good posters.
    Time to fight fire with fire.

    • jd65
      October 27, 2016, 11:28 am

      While I understand where you’re coming from, I think that’s a horrible suggestion.

      • ritzl
        October 27, 2016, 12:41 pm

        Why?

        Contemporaneous, proximate ugliness would highlight the hypocrisy of the administration response in each of these cases. They couldn’t prosecute one poster’s method without simultaneously and commensurately prosecuting the other poster’s method.

        Or they might try to differentiate because Palestinian “safety” on campus is (in their administrative minds) far less important than Jewish “safety” on campus, but then that would raise a whole raft of moral questions if not legal actions with demonstrative, real-time evidence of discrimination/unequal treatment.

        Except for the martyrdom aspect (someone would have to volunteer to accept the punishment, but then they’re being punished NOW without an end in sight), it’s a win-win.

      • jd65
        October 27, 2016, 1:54 pm

        ritzl (& Kay24):

        “Why?”

        Not to sound simplistic, but two wrongs don’t make a right. Often, this “truism” doesn’t take into account certain mitigating factors of a situation, and is actually simplistic. I don’t think this situation/suggestion (yours and Kay24’s) is one of those instances.

        “[Fight] the poster war with equally filthy posters…”

        “[Fight the poster war with]… [c]ontemporaneous, proximate ugliness…”

        Really? I know you are, but what am I? Homo says what? What are we, 6 years old?

        I’d guess that doing what you’re suggesting would be EXACTLY what pro-Israel, Geller/Horowitz followers would love to see from Palestinian activists. Especially given the climate on campuses these days…

      • jd65
        October 27, 2016, 1:55 pm

        ritzl (& Kay24):

        “Why?”

        Not to sound simplistic, but two wrongs don’t make a right. Often, this “truism” doesn’t take into account certain mitigating factors of a situation, and is actually simplistic. I don’t think this situation/suggestion (yours and Kay24’s) is one of those instances.

        “[Fight] the poster war with equally filthy posters…”

        “[Fight the poster war with]… [c]ontemporaneous, proximate ugliness…”

        Really? “Stooping” is a good idea? I know you are, but what am I? Homo says what? What are we, 6 years old?

        I’d guess that doing what you’re suggesting would be EXACTLY what pro-Israel, Geller/Horowitz followers would love to see from Palestinian activists. Especially given the climate on campuses these days…

      • Kay24
        October 27, 2016, 4:22 pm

        So far being polite and showing restraint has not helped. I am sure some facts pointing out to the fact that our tax dollars are encouraging a decades long occupation, and the occupiers to keep stealing lands (all true) might make a point. The ugliness we keep seeing from zionist supporters have been going on for too long, and ignoring it with silence did not stop them.
        We did see some really good posters on buses referring to the boycott of Israel did bring attention to this ridiculous situation. Who cares what Pamela Geller and her ilk thinks anyway. People know that Geller and Gaffney are zionist tools in the US.

      • JWalters
        October 27, 2016, 6:59 pm

        I suspect Kay24 meant fighting back with equally hard-hitting posters. As she notes, there is much factual material to use in hard-hitting posters. I agree it should be used to the hilt.

        I suspect jd65 is saying that using the same dishonest tactics as the Zionists would be a big mistake, and I agree with that. The facts are a strong weapon for the Palestinians, and Israel’s greatest weakness. Israel’s barbaric ideology should be hit with nuclear fact-bombs.

      • jd65
        October 27, 2016, 8:44 pm

        JWalters:

        “I suspect jd65 is saying that using the same dishonest tactics as the Zionists would be a big mistake, and I agree with that.

        Yup. That’s what I’m sayin’.

        And as a response to the D. Horowitz sponsored/produced predictably grotesque, infantile, impossibly rude, disgusting trash, Kay24 and ritzl suggest supporters of Palestine should “fight fire with fire,” fight back with “equally filthy posters,” and/or respond with “[c]ontemporaneous, proximate ugliness.”

        It’s cool for you give Kay24 the benefit of the doubt, J. But I’m kind of a freak w/ language. These quotes from their posts are, uhh… They appear to me to be relatively straight-forward in meaning. And I’d say someone would be pretty hard-pressed to interpret them as meaning we should use “nuclear fact-bombs” instead. That’s some serious rose-colored glasses interpreting, imo. Nice phrase, by the way :)

        We’re back to the twitter “misrepresent/misinterpret” conversation I had w/ someone on this site last week. I don’t think we need to walk on eggshells and watch every little nuance of every phrase ad word we use. People are gonna abuse things now and then. But the above quotes are… Whatever. Nobody will ever convince me that behaving like David Horowitz is anything but the end of the fucking world. He is THE WORST. And suggesting we should behave like him and mimic his tactics.. There are no words that would come close to describing how sick that makes me feel.

        In the immortal words of Eric Bogosian: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words cause permanent damage.”

      • eljay
        October 28, 2016, 11:18 am

        No need to stoop to ugliness – just present the truth. It’s ugly enough to affect anyone who possesses a functioning conscience. (Unfortunately, far too many people don’t possess one, and the consciences of Zio-supremacists are selectively defective.)

      • Kay24
        October 28, 2016, 11:57 am

        Being polite and restrained has not helped so far against the ugliness that comes from the other side. They should not care what Geller and Gaffney thinks, they do not seem to have any consideration for those they attack, so taking them into any consideration is a waste of time.

        We have seen many decent posters that simply state facts like the fact that we keeps sending an occupier billions in aid which only encourages to keep their occupation going and the disgusting theft of lands. Instead of lying and casting hatred for the Palestinian people, a simple ad in the bus calling for the boycott of Israel is reasonable enough. As I mentioned before there is so much material available, the many UN resolutions will back that.

        http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/francisco-boycott-palestinians/

      • jd65
        October 28, 2016, 12:05 pm

        @ eljay:

        “No need to stoop to ugliness…”

        My point is not that there’s no need for it. My point is that it’s counterproductive.

        I promise to stop harping on this now…

      • eljay
        October 28, 2016, 12:36 pm

        || jd65: … My point is not that there’s no need for it. My point is that it’s counterproductive. … ||

        And I agree. My point was that stooping to ugliness is not required when truth will (or should) suffice. :-)

      • Lillian Rosengarten
        October 28, 2016, 11:33 pm

        Odious and disgusting. Shows the desperate face of Zionism: a delusional ,brutal, psychotic government devoid of humanity, poetry and love.

  2. amigo
    October 27, 2016, 2:12 pm

    It,s time to educate Dick and Jane .It is time to introduce them to , “Jewish Terrorism.Time to start putting up images of the Leaders of Irgun/Hagannah and the other Jewish Terrorists that roamed the streets of so called Israel prior to it,s UDI .Time to include copies of statements made by these terrorists after they became leaders , in which they stated clearly , there would be no state but a Jewish one.See Ben Gurion and M , Begin , to name just two.Time to report the many bombing attacks carried out by zionists on Arab markets and buses etc where hundreds of civilians were slaughtered.Time to show Americans they are being used .

  3. JWalters
    October 27, 2016, 6:44 pm

    “The posters are the work of the David Horowitz Freedom Center, a pro-Israel group”

    Another Israeli false flag operation in a long pattern of deceptions.

    The “rising Islamophobia and attacks on Muslims” in America is driven by the Israelis, as following the money shows. The resulting chaos in American politics helps them keep the profitable Middle East wars rolling.

    This is also destroying America’s democracy. For readers who haven’t seen it yet, more info is online in “War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror”.

  4. Kay24
    October 28, 2016, 1:36 pm

    I agree with Eljay.

    Being polite and restrained has not helped so far against the ugliness that comes from the other side. They should not care what Geller and Gaffney thinks, they do not seem to have any consideration for those they attack, so taking them into any consideration is a waste of time.

    We have seen many factual posters that simply state facts like the fact that we keeps sending an occupier billions in aid which only encourages to keep their occupation going and the disgusting theft of lands. Instead of lying and casting hatred for the Palestinian people, a simple ad in the bus calling for the boycott of Israel is reasonable enough. As I mentioned before there is so much material available, the many UN resolutions will back that.

    http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/francisco-boycott-palestinians/

  5. dr. abraham Weizfeld Ph.D.
    October 29, 2016, 1:36 pm

    The appropriate response to nullify the intention of the poster is to disavow the intention of the poster which is to associate Anti-Zionism with Antisemitism.
    First of all the association is not true since it is the Zionist State that is responsible for the genocidal massacres of the Palestinian People.
    Second; the Zionist State only represents half the Jewish Israeli population which is less than half the entire Jewish People of the world.
    Third; the Palestinian revolution against occupation and expulsion is to defeat the military power by political means and not by way of the same tactics and strategy as the Zionist State.
    Fourth; Palestinian liberation does not follow the mentality of the Zionist ideology that seeks to substitute one form of racism, Antisemitism, by another, Islamophobia.
    Five; the poster’s claims are false since the HAMAS Charter does not call for the “Elimination of the Jewish People”.

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