AMCHA INITIATIVE OUTRAGED OVER “SECRET” ANTI-ISRAEL CONFERENCE AT NYU
Contact: Nicole Rosen
Santa Cruz, CA, February 26, 2014 – AMCHA Initiative cofounders, Tammi Rossman-Benjamin and Leila Beckwith, released the following statement today about the upcoming anti-Israel, pro-boycott conference at New York University (NYU):
“Far from the “academic conference” it was touted to be, “Circuits of Influence” will be nothing more than a platform for 21 anti-Israel activists to spew their hatred of the Jewish state and promote a boycott intended to hasten its elimination. All of the conference’s participants are anti-Israel, pro-boycott activists and the schedule is a compilation of workshops on how to boycott Israel, given by representatives of virulently anti-Zionists. No wonder Professor Duggan wants to hide this event from public scrutiny. It is an unscholarly, antisemitic, politically-motivated and directed conference.”
“Wrapping themselves in the mantle of “academic freedom,” the organizing professors are abusing their scholarly privilege and brazenly using their academic credentials and university funding to advance their purely activist agenda. University administrators must not allow these anti-Israel activist professors like Duggan to exploit NYU’s resources and reputation and hijack NYU to advance their antisemitic agenda.”
The event is being organized by NYU professor Lisa Duggan, an anti-Israel activist who has repeatedly promoted academic, cultural and economic boycotts of Israel and is the President-elect of the American Studies Association, a group that recently voted to boycott Israel. The conference is closed to the press and public. In fact, Duggan wrote on Facebook, “PLEASE DO NOT post or circulate the flyer. We are trying to avoid press, protestors and public attention.”
AMCHA Initiative is a non-profit organization dedicated to investigating, documenting, educating about, and combating antisemitism at institutions of higher education in America. AMCHA Initiative’s efforts are bolstered by a network of more than 5,000 members and supporters of the Jewish community — including university alumni, parents and grandparents, rabbis, religious school principals and synagogue members — who have joined together to speak in one voice to ensure the safety and well-being of Jewish students on college and university campuses across the country.