Campus Monitor - Western Washington University

Student Voices

  • March 12, 2017 – Western Washington University Jewish Student (Chaja) – “People in my dorm have chanted ‘Hitler youth’ at me and told me they style their hair off of Nazi propaganda. They have also asked me to research Neo-Nazis with them.” Read more
  • March 12, 2017 – Western Washington University Jewish Student (Madeleine) – “[I]  would see swastikas all over, but the first time [I] reported something on campus was when a Halloween skeleton decoration was posed in a Nazi salute with the word “reich” written in big red letters underneath it… I would like to see less coverups, I would like to see less immediate erasing of whatever it is and more documenting and sharing with the community that [anti-Semitism] happens.”  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.

    Classification Date-Description
    TARGETING JEWISH STUDENTS AND STAFF: DESTRUCTION OF JEWISH PROPERTY 3/21/18 – The Dean of Libraries reported a second incident of vandalized and damaged books in the Jewish Studies section, bringing the total number of damaged books to seven. President Sabah Randhawa sent an email to the campus community prior to alerting the campus of this second incident, stating, “There can be no justification for these acts and I stand in full solidarity with our Jewish community in condemning these vile attacks in the strongest possible way.” WWU spokesman Paul Cocke said, “In the most recent incident, one book was severely damaged, with pages ripped out and the book spine broken. The other books sustained severe damage, including cut, torn or defaced pages, to the point they will need to be replaced.”
    3/15/18 – A swastika was found drawn on a poster outside a faculty member’s office door in the Communications Building.
    3/12/18 – Two antisemitic incidents occurred on campus. Several books were damaged in the Jewish Studies section of the Wilson Library and defaced with antisemitic language. Additionally, a swastika was drawn in either ink or marker on a poster outside of a faculty member’s office in the Communications Building.
    3/14/17 – A swastika was found carved into a wall of a bathroom in Bond Hall.
    2/12/17 – A 12″ x 12″ swastika drawn in condensation was found on a window in the Fairhaven Complex. The student was caught. Records indicated that there was no administrative action or consequences for this incident. According to a report issued by the Task Force on Preventing and Responding to Antisemitism, eleven cases of antisemitism, including hate speech and the use of swastikas, were reported on campus from spring 2016 to winter 2017.
    2/14/16 – A Fairhaven resident told the resident director that a swastika had been drawn next to their name on a sign-up sheet posted on their door.
    GENOCIDAL EXPRESSION 2/2/16 – Resident advisers making rounds in Ridgeway Beta found a headless porcelain doll with a note that said “Death to all Jews” attached.
    1/31/16 – A Jewish student living in Fairhaven Complex reported to their resident adviser that a swastika had been drawn on a whiteboard attached to their door.
    6/1/16 – Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies held the event, “Shirley Osterhaus: Coordinator of World Issues Forum; Senior Instructor, Fairhaven College – Beyond Borders, Walls and Marginalities: Solidarity Forever.” During her talk, Shirley Osterhaus demonized Israel, falsely accusing the state of “massacring” Palestinians and “ethnic cleansing.” She further delegitimized Israel, falsely accusing it of apartheid, as well as called for BDS.
    2/25/15 – WWU Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights and the Fairhaven World Issues Forum hosted a talk by BDS founder Omar Barghouti. According to an announcement of the event, Barghouti was to speak about BDS and “breaking the links of complicity with Israel’s regime of occupation, colonization and apartheid.” The event was co-sponsored by the WWU Political Science Department, Human Services, Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies, and other student and community groups.
    2/10/16 – A departmental event presented by Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies entitled, “The Stark Similarities between the Black and Palestinian Struggle for Human Rights” with Aaron Dixon, an activist and former captain of the Seattle chapter of the Black Panther Party, occured on campus. The event was co-sponsored by Ethnic Student Center, the Sociology Department, the Political Science Department and the Women, Sexuality and Gender Studies program. During his talk, Dixon equated Zionism to racism, and called for BDS.
    BDS ACTIVITY: BDS EVENT 3/3/15 – WWU Students United for Palestinian Equal Rights held a meeting to promote an anti-Israel divestment resolution.


    In the News ?

    March 23, 2018:
    The Bellingham Herald – After Jewish studies books vandalized, WWU will do this to ‘stand up to hate and bigotry’

    March 21, 2018:
    The Western Front – Another incident of antisemitism in library reported

    March 16, 2018:
    The Bellingham Herald – ‘This type of deplorable behavior has a long and dark history.’ Now it’s seen at WWU

    March 14, 2017:
    KPUG – Swastika found in Western Washington University bathroom

    March 12, 2017:
    The Western Front – Students Share Stories Of Anti-Semitism

    June 26, 2016:
    The Seattle Times – Recognize and speak out against anti-Semitism
    (Description note, “Fierce anti-Israel and anti-Semitic sentiment has taken hold at universities across the nation; the ADL reports almost a 50 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents at colleges last year. This year at Western Washington University, several extreme incidents of anti-Semitism caused WWU President Bruce Shepard to convene a special task force to address the problem. At the University of Washington, a small, vocal group in the graduate student union sought to co-opt union time and resources to push a BDS resolution. A month ago, burned pages from a book by a Jewish poet were scattered outside the UW’s Hillel building, a sickening reminder of Jewish books burned during the Inquisition. Too many state-funded universities have allowed hate speech and anti-Zionist tropes to create a hostile environment for Jewish students.”)

    June 6, 2016:
    The Algemeiner – Headless Doll Calling for ‘Death to All Jews’ Among Spate of Antisemitic Incidents at Western Washington University

    May 31, 2016:
    The Olympian – BDS movement is misguided attack on Israel
    (Description note, “We in Washington should take note, since Jewish students at the University of Washington and, most recently, at Western Washington University have experienced similar bouts of hostility against pro-Israel expressions, along with online hate speech and swastikas drawn on dormitory doors. Reports indicate that Jewish students at Western Washington University feel so intimidated that they stay under the radar.”)

    April 14, 2016:
    Western Washington University – Western Washington Forms Panel on Anti-Semitic Incidents

    April 13, 2016:
    Inside Higher Ed – President Shepard sends message to campus regarding anti-Semitism

    April 13, 2016:
    The Seattle Times – Anti-Semitic task force formed at Western Washington University after 3 incidents

    April 13, 2016:
    KHQ – Western Washington University reports anti-Semitic incidents

    February 25, 2015: EVENT – WWU to Host Activist Omar Barghouti Feb. 25 (Description note: “Western Washington University’s Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies’ World Issues Forum will host Palestinian human rights activist Omar Barghouti from noon-1:20 p.m. in the Fairhaven College Auditorium, where he will present “Israel, South Africa and the Jim Crow South: Resisting Apartheid.”)

    June 16, 2014: KGMI – Western Washington University – Resolution says taking action against a country can cause students to be harassed because of their nationality.

    June 12, 2014: College Insurrection – Western Washington University Student Government Rejects BDS in Unanimous Vote

    June 12, 2014: JTA – Western Washington U. passes anti-BDS resolution

    June 11, 2014: Brandeis Center – Good News from Western Washington

    June 11, 2014: JNS – First proactive anti-BDS student resolution passes at Western Washington U.

    June 11, 2014: Stand With Us – StandWithUs Applauds Western Washington University Student Government’s Unanimous Vote to Reject All Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions Based on National Origin


    Photo Album - Campus Antisemitism

    WWU vandalism books

    The second incident of vandalized and damaged books in the Jewish Studies section of the WWU Library. Source Credit: The Western Front (March 21, 2018)

    Source Credit: Western Frontline, 6.2.16

    Source Credit: Western Frontline, 6.2.16

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

    BDS Tracker

    6/1/2014 – Student Government: FAILED – Votes Unanimously to Reject All Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions Based on National Origin.

    BDS Instigators: Student & Faculty




    Number of Faculty Endorsing the Academic Boycott of Israel: 1

    1. Tamara Lea Spira


    AMCHA Activism

    April 14, 2016 – Press Release – AMCHA Commends WWU for forming Task Force