Campus Monitor - Portland State University

Student Voices

  • October 30, 2016 – Portland State University Jewish Student (Brennan, president of CHAI) – “Almost all members of the Student Council had made up their minds against Israel. For example, the incoming president of the Student Senate announced she would make it her job over the summer to ‘educate’ the new senators on boycotting the Jewish state.” Read more
  • October 24, 2017 – Portland State University Jewish Student (Shayla) – “By telling me I was not welcome to engage in the discussion because I am a perceived Zionist, meaning I believe that the Jewish people have a right to self-determination within their historic homeland, the senator was deliberately trying to humiliate me and create a one-sided argument.” Read more
  • June 1, 2016 – Portland State University Jewish Student (Shir) – “[At the May 23 divestment meeting] there was a lot of hate. They clearly didn’t want to hear the other side. They came with signs with very antisemitic remarks that read ‘Only one state, a Palestinian State.’ They even said that terrorist attacks are understandable because it’s a form of resistance. I have been told by Jewish students at PSU that they have been exposed to antisemitism activity in the university, and that it’s nothing new.” Read more
  • February 4, 2016 – Portland State University Pro-Israel Student (Brennan) – “And, while they pursue these progressive causes, they also say that Israel doesn’t have a right to exist and Jews don’t deserve a state, even though they admitted they had no problem with any of the other modern nation states that have a particular ethnic identity. It’s frustrating because it’s a cultural trend in the student body that I feel like we can’t stop.” Read more

 

Antisemitism Tracker

Total Antisemitic Activity:

To see more information on how AMCHA determines antisemitic activity, click HERE.
To report a concern, click HERE.


ClassificationDate-Description
TARGETING JEWISH STUDENTS AND STAFF: DISCRIMINATION;
DENIGRATION;
DEMONIZATION
10/23/17 – The co-president of a student group called CHAI, the Cultural and Historical Association for Israel, was told on social media by a student senator in response to her raising concerns about the use of the word ‘genocide’ in anti-abortion marketing on campus, “As a reminder, the correct definition of genocide is clearly exemplified by the State of Israel’s atrocities against Palestinians. I hope that before you object [to] such a cruel statement, you recognize the one you make by the systems you do support.” Additional comments of, “no Zionists here” followed.
GENOCIDAL EXPRESSION;
HISTORICAL
3/8/17 – A backward swastika and the phrases “Huwyte PWR” and “Heil Trump” appeared in the men’s restroom on the third floor of Neuberger Hall. According to the PSU Vangaurd, “the term ‘huwyte’ is a loose reference to white nationalist Jared Taylor, editor and founder of American Renaissance, a magazine self-described as a ‘race-realist’ publication.” Jared Taylor responded to the graffiti on Twitter, calling it “improbable” and “surely a hoax.”
ANTISEMITIC EXPRESSION:DEMONIZATION;
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (BDS EVENT)
6/12/17 – SUPER and the Student Animal Liberation Coalition co-hosted the event, “Dirty Laundry: Exposing Brand Israel.” The description for the event claimed that “Brand Israel” is an attempt to discredit the BDS movement’s “campaign to end Israeli apartheid,” whose result is “a powerful, militarized, and oppressive colonial nation-state that has been pink-washed, green-washed, and even vegan-washed.” The event also entailed “Learn[ing] how to resist Brand Israel and organize in support of the BDS campaign…[and] stand[ing] in solidarity with PAL as a means of resisting Brand Israel’s campaign of vegan and humane-washing that erroneously paints Israel as the most progressive nation on the planet in terms of animals and veganism as a means of erasing the Palestinian relationship with the land and its animals.”
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (CALLS FOR BDS)
1/20/17 – According to an article in the school newspaper, the second key speaker at a campus anti-Trump rally expressed support for BDS as well as delegitimized Israel calling it an “apartheid regime.”
DENYING JEWS SELF-DETERMINATION;
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (BDS VOTE)
10/24/16 – The student senate passed a divestment resolution (with a majority vote 22-2-1) that called for divestment from HP, Motorola, Caterpillar, and G4S. The resolution referred to the right of return as one of the reasons for divesting, which would effectively eliminate Israel as a Jewish state. The resolution additionally stated, “the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land has been entrenched since 1948.” Speakers delegitimized Israel, referring to Israel as apartheid during public comments explicitly remarking, “Israel is apartheid.”
DEMONIZATION;
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (CALLS FOR BDS)
5/28/16 – Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights (SUPER) held the event, “Vegan-Washing the Occupation: Resisting Brand Israel.” The description for the event called for BDS, and claimed “Brand Israel” was trying to, “undermine the momentum of the international Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign to end Israeli apartheid.” A table for the event had a sign that delegitimized Israel saying, “Stop Israeli…Apartheid.”
CONDONED TERRORISM;
DENY JEWS SELF-DETERMINATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (BDS VOTE)
5/23/16 – The student senate talked about a divestment resolution where it was decided the vote would occur in two weeks time, on June 6, 2016. A Jewish student present claimed that at the meeting, “there was a lot of hate. They clearly didn’t want to hear the other side. They came with signs with very antisemitic remarks that read ‘Only one state, a Palestinian State.’ They even said that terrorist attacks are understandable because it’s a form of resistance.”
DEMONIZATION;
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (BDS EVENT)
5/23/16 – SUPER held the event, “The Violence of Occupation, Colonization, Borders, and Police.” During the event, one of the speakers, Dr. Nada Elia, demonized Israel throughout, including remarking on Israelis raping Palestinian children frequently in detention and falsely claiming IDF soldiers receive violent shirts on graduation, among others. She also made supportive statements of understanding the “need to resist” and had a slide referring to “Israeli apartheid.” She ended her presentation with a call to BDS.
DELEGITIMIZATION;
BDS ACTIVITY (CALLS FOR BDS)
5/23/16 – Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights (SUPER) tabled to distribute literature in support of the event, “The Violence of Occupation, Colonization, Borders, and Police.” A sign on the table read, “STOP Israeli Occupation and Apartheid” which falsely accused Israel of apartheid. A book on the table supported BDS.
BDS ACTIVITY:BDS VOTE 6/6/16 – The Associated Students of Portland State University discusses and then tables a divestment resolution until the fall term with a vote of 21-0-2.
BDS VOTE5/12/16 – A PSU student senate hearing discussed the SUPER divestment resolution.
BDS EVENT2/24/15 – Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights organized a talk by BDS founder Omar Barhgouti which was intended “to promote awareness and student engagement”in BDS.

 

In the News ?

October 24, 2017:
Vanguard – Viking Voices: Dialogue as a Two Way Street

April 24, 2017:
Vanguard – Jewish students observe first Passover Seder event after difficult year
(Description note, “Portland State’s Jewish Student Union organized its first Passover Seder on April 11. Event organizers said they were motivated to host the event after what they described was a difficult year on campus for Jewish and Israeli students. In October 2016, the student body government overwhelmingly passed the “Resolution to Recommend Divestment from Companies Involved in Israeli Military Occupation.” The nonbinding resolution called for PSU to divest from businesses that work with the State of Israel. President Wim Wiewel described the resolution as divisive. In March 2017, a backward swastika was found carved in a men’s restroom stall in Neuberger Hall. At the Passover Seder students and Jewish community members observed several prayers and rituals before enjoying a kosher dinner.”)

January 23, 2017:
Vanguard – PSU students stage campus walkout in protest of trump
(Description note, “The second key speaker was Hanna Eid, a PSU student and ISO member. Eid discussed the topic of activist suppression both at PSU and throughout U.S. foreign policy and how PSU officials have been negligent in supporting student interests. ‘We passed a BDS resolution here at Portland State, but it was not an easy journey…President Wim Wiewel sent out an email saying the resolution was divisive and ill-informed, and he has made his connections to—inappropriate connections—to the Israeli lobby known at the expense of [Palestinian] students but certainly other students who are advocating for a free Palestine…How this plays into the macro image is—with Donald Trump’s cabinet and their virulent support of the apartheid regime in Israel and many of his cabinet picks are open supporters of settlement building—if not donators…That’s a tactic that’s been used. It’s essentially neo-McCarthyism and the creation of websites, such as the Canary Mission, that paint activists as anti-Semites and shut down any dialog about the state of Israel because it breaks the status quo. But we are here to let, not only the administration here at PSU now but the Trump administration as well, that we won’t stand for that. We are going fight for equal rights for all.’ Eid began to finish his speech by quoting activist Lila Watson: ‘If you are here to help me, you’re wasting your time. But if you’re here because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.’”)

January 4, 2017:
The Algemeiner – In Aftermath of BDS Resolution at Portland State U, Israel-Advocates ‘Excited to Move On,’ Publicly Celebrate Jewish State

October 31, 2016:
PSU Vanguard – Democracy and Human Rights Rule at PSU
(Description note, “”The ‘Resolution to Recommend Divestment from Companies Involved in Israeli Military Occupation’ calls on PSU to divest from companies found to profit from human rights violations against Palestinian civilians by the Israeli government. Companies specified in the resolution are Caterpillar Inc., Motorola Solutions, Hewlett Packard Enterprises, HP Inc, and G4S. The resolution also requests an alternative internal investment screen to prohibit future investments in companies which profit from human rights violations in either Israel or Palestine. The room was packed and several people signed up to speak for or against the resolution. Prior to anyone speaking, ASPSU representatives set a two-minute time limit and an alternation between pros and cons. At the flip of a coin a person from the pro side spoke first. A total of 19 speakers were heard: 16 pro, 3 con.”)

October 30, 2016:
The Algemeiner – Head of Portland State U’s Israel Society Decries Student Senate Passage of BDS Resolution; Says Campus Jewish Community Preparing to ‘Move Forward, Empower Ourselves’

October 26, 2016:
Jewish Telegraphic Agency – Portland State University student senate passes pro-BDS resolution

October 26, 2016:
The College Fix – Israel’s 1948 founding is ‘occupation’ in BDS resolution approved by student government

October 24, 2016:
ASPSU Senate Meeting PSU Divest Final Portion – Vote to pass BDS

October 24, 2016:
ASPSU Divestment Resolution Text

October 24, 2016:
ASPSU Senate Meeting – Divestment Voting: Meeting Minutes

August 3, 2016:
Facebook – Posting on Facebook by the Portland State University Student Union
(Description note – The Portland State University Student Union posted a meme which contained an image of a girl “flicking off” above an image of President Wim Wiewel. The text on the photo read, “Wave it in his face. Tell ’em, boy bye!” The accompanying explanatory text by PSUSU stated, “Last week, Portland State University President, Wim Wiewel, announced that this coming academic year will be his last as university president…He refuses to engage with students who want to see change at the university, going so far as to call a student government resolution in support of Palestinian equal rights “divisive” and “ill informed.” While not necessarily our intention, it appears that our desire to work outside of the bureaucratic systems which rule PSU and give Wim Wiewel power, has pressured him to step aside.”)

June 8, 2016:
The Oregonian – At Portland State, Hamas and Israel collide in viral video and controversial student plan

June 6, 2016:
ASPSU Facebook – Divestment Resolution is discussed
(Description note, – The Associated Students of Portland State University tables a divestment resolution until the fall term with a vote of 21-0-2)

June 1, 2016:
The Algemeiner – Student Body Poised to Embrace BDS at Portland State University

May 28, 2016:
EVENT – Vegan-Washing the Occupation: Resisting Brand Israel

May 23, 2016:
Fox News – Horowitz: Portland State University students aid Hamas?

May 23, 2016:
Town Hall – Portland State Students Donate Hundreds For Hamas to Blow Up Israeli Hospitals, Cafes, Schools, Etc.

April 10, 2015:
Steven Salaita spoke on campus, sponsored by Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights (SUPER).

February 24, 2015:
EVENT – OMAR BARGHOUTI: A panel conversation on the cross-movement relevance of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), featuring Kanahus Manuel, Cecilie Surasky and Dr. Michael Yellowbird

December 13, 2014:
KOIN6 – National Day of Resistance includes Portland

December 2, 2014:
Anti-Defamation League – Hackers Post Anti-Semitism On U.S. Universities’ Websites
(Description note: Sev­eral Amer­i­can uni­ver­si­ties’ web­sites were hacked with the messages, “Death to All Jews…Viva Hamas, Qas­sam” or to a page with a song recording, “Teach the son of the Jew­ish woman how many times we will con­quer him.”)

November 14, 2014:
EVENT – Boycott Divestments & Sanctions with Remi Kanazi

January 9, 2014:
avimayer.tumblr.com – Additional Statements Opposing the Boycott

September 23, 2013:
Dag Hammarskjöld Program Vimeo Channel – Omar Barghouti- Strategies for change

March 4, 2013:
EVENT – International ISRAELI APARTHEID WEEK @PSU, featuring TWO award-winning films!

 

Photo Album - Campus Antisemitism

Source Credit: Event page on Facebook, May 28, 2016

A table outside of the event, “Vegan-Washing the Occupation: Resisting Brand Israel” that delegitimized Israel by falsely accusing it of apartheid. Source Credit: Event page on Facebook (May 28, 2016)

Source Credit: Event page on Facebook, May 28, 2016

Source Credit: SUPER Facebook (May 23, 2016)

Source Credit: Anti-Defamation League, Dec 2 2014

Source Credit: Anti-Defamation League, Dec 2 2014


Source Credit: Facebook, March 4 2015

Source Credit: Facebook, March 4 2015

To report antisemitic activity at this or any other campus, you may:

BDS Tracker

October 24, 2016 – Passed – The student senate passed a divestment resolution (with a majority vote 22-2-1) that called for divestment from HP, Motorola, Caterpillar, and G4S.

June 6, 2016 – Tabled – The Associated Students table a divestment resolution until the fall term with a vote of 21-0-2.


BDS Instigators: Student & Faculty


STUDENT BDS

N/A

FACULTY BDS

Number of Faculty Endorsing the Academic Boycott of Israel: 1

  1. Frederico Perez

 


AMCHA Activism

There are currently no AMCHA Initiative campaigns for this campus.