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Academic Boycotts of Israel are Antisemitic (Take Action)

Academic Boycotts of Israel are Antisemitic

December 20, 2013

TAKE ACTION NOW: Urge Universities to Withdraw Membership from Organizations Endorsing the Boycott of Israel

In the 1930’s, thousands of Jewish professors were kicked out of German universities, simply because they were Jews.  Today in America, Jewish professors are threatened with being thrown out of scholarly conferences, prevented from publishing in scholarly journals, and denied research or employment opportunities, simply because they are citizens of the Jewish state.

Today’s academic boycott of the Jewish state and its scholars is no less antisemitic than the academic boycott of Jewish scholars in Germany 70 years ago.

Academic boycotts of Israeli academic institutions and scholars, like virtually all anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns within the last several years, have been established in response to the Palestinian political call to join the BDS movement against Israel.  That call was issued in 2005 by a coalition of Palestinian organizations that included the terrorist organizations Hamas and the PFLP, and its purpose was to facilitate the elimination of the Jewish state.  It is not surprising that most of the American founders of academic boycotts of Israel have publicly expressed their opposition to the Jewish state.

Hannah Rosenthal, the former U.S. State Department’s Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, has unequivocally condemned academic boycotts, saying: “when academics from Israel are boycotted – this is not objecting to a policy – this is anti-Semitism.”  In addition 446 American University Presidents signed a statement published in the New York Times entitled “Boycott Israeli Universities? Boycott Ours, Too!”Alarmingly, more than 1,000 faculty members at over 300 US colleges and universities have endorsed an academic boycott of Israeli universities and Jewish Israeli academics.  (You can see the names of the academic boycott supporters at each university in AMCHA’s Academic Boycott Map).

Even more disturbing is that well-known academic organizations are embracing the academic boycott of Israel.  Last April, the general membership of the Association for Asian American Studies (AAAS) unanimously approved the resolution put forward by the AAAAS National Council to endorse the boycott of Israeli universities.

On December 15, the 5,000-member American Studies Association (ASA) approved an anti-Israel academic boycott resolution put forward by the ASA National Council.

The ASA’s recent endorsement of the academic boycott of Israel has drawn scathing criticism from many organizations, including the American Association of University Professors, the Anti-Defamation League, the Simon Wiesental CenterZionist Organization of AmericaAmerican Jewish CommitteeScholars for Peace in the Middle East, and Stand With Us.

In addition, two universities — Penn State Harrisburg and Brandeis — have officially withdrawn their membership from the American Studies Association, after the ASA’s endorsement of the academic boycott of Israel.

However there are 83 colleges and universities that are still institutional members of the ASA.


Below is a list of the remaining institutional members of the ASA. Please consider writing to one or more universities on the list and urge them to join Penn State Harrisbug and Brandeis University in withdrawing their membership from the ASA in response to that organization’s antisemitic boycott of Israel:

Alberta Institute for American Studies
Bard Graduate Center
Boston College
Boston University
Brandeis University
Brigham Young University
Brown University
California State University, Fullerton
California State University, Long Beach
Carnegie-Mellon University
Centre for the Study of the United States
College of Staten Island, CUNY
College of William and Mary
Cornell University
Crystal Bridge Museum of American Art
CUNY Graduate Center, American Studies Certificate Program
DePaul University
Dickinson College
Eccles Centre for American Studies, The British Library
Emory University
Fordham University
Franklin College of Indiana
George Washington University
Georgetown University
Hamilton College
Harvard University
Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania
Indiana University
Kennesaw State University
Kenyon College
Lehigh University
The Long Island Museum
Michigan State University, English Department
Middlebury College
New York University
Northwestern University
Penn State University, Harrisburg
Princeton University
Ramapo College
Richard Stockton College of New Jersey
Rider University
Roger Williams University
Rowan College of New Jersey
Rutgers University, New Brunswick
Saint John Fisher College
Saint Louis University
Saint Olaf College
Skidmore College
Smith College
Sophia University
St. Francis College
Stanford University, American Studies Program
Stanford University, Green Library
Stetson University
Students At The Center
Temple University
Trinity College, Hartford, CT.
Tufts University
University of Alabama
University of California, San Diego
University of Delaware
University of Hawaii
University of Iowa
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
University of Minnesota
University of Mississippi
University of New Mexico
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
University of Notre Dame
University of Oklahoma Honors College
University of Southern California
University of Southern Mississippi
University of Texas, Austin
University of Texas, Dallas
University of Utah
University of Western Ontario
University of Wyoming
Vanderbilt University
Washington State University
Washington University, St. Louis
Western Connecticut State University
Willamette University
Winterthur Program in Early American
Culture Youngstown State University


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