Student activism at the University of Cambridge surrounding the most recent events in Gaza has, of late, been severely problematic.
Beginning with a rally on Kings Parade, which included calls for the destruction of the State of Israel and drew comparisons between Israeli soldiers and Nazis, the campaign has gradually deteriorated to include calls for a University boycott of companies doing business with Israel. As no similar campaign has emerged to support the plight of any other oppressed minority in the region or globally, one would expect students to question what is it about the Palestinian cause that elicits such a comprehensive response from students who are ardent supporters of human rights.
The noticeable lack of interest would appear to stem not from an active decision on the part of students to abstain from supporting other causes. Rather, this is the result of a successful co-option of the plight of the Palestinian people by self-declared do-gooders seeking to promote their own agenda at the expense of the Palestinian cause.
Calling on the university, “to honour its ethical responsibilities by immediately terminating its investments in Caterpillar Inc. and BAE Systems,”the campaign accuses these companies of being, “complicit in violations of international law, in solidarity with the Palestinian people’s struggle for freedom, justice and equality.” No similar concern, however, has been expressed for the violation of international law by Hamas, a recognized terror organization, and their systematic violation of their own citizens’ basic freedoms. Similarly, no concern was at all expressed for rocket attacks against Israeli civilians and the attempted perpetration of numerous large-scale terror attacks against Israeli communities.
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Contributed by Cambridge University CAMERA Fellow Shlomo Roiter Jesner.