Statement by Gilad Skolnick, Director of Campus Programming for CAMERA, on the appointment of Professor Bruce Duthu as Dean of Faculty at Dartmouth College:

“CAMERA calls on Professor Duthu to publicly retract his support for the BDS campaign, and in the event that he does not do this, calls on the Dartmouth College to retract his appointment. The BDS movement breaches the principle of academic freedom, and is in total contradiction to the values expressed by President Hanlon, who stated in January that “the engagement with the full human diversity of backgrounds, perspectives and experience is critical.” By his actions, President Hanlon is demonstrating that he believes all people and views should be welcomed, unless they are Israeli. Racism is built into the BDS campaign, which is run by radicals who wish to see the end of the state of Israel. This decision is a black stain on the long and proud history of Dartmouth College.”

Professor Bruce Duthu

BDS is a one-sided campaign of demonization, lead by radical Palestinians whose goal is the destruction of Israel. Hiding behind the cloak of human rights and justice, they single out the one free nation in the Middle East for condemnation, simplifying and warping a complex conflict, in order to demonize and harm the State of Israel.

One would assume that universities, whose aim are to spread knowledge, and protect academic freedom, would not be places that give any support to a movement which calls to boycott academics. But Dartmouth University has recently caused outrage by appointing a new dean who is an outspoken supporter of BDS.

Professor Bruce Duthu, a professor of Native American Law, who signed a declaration supporting BDS in 2013, has been appointed as the new Dean of Faculty. (Quite absurdly, the BDS declaration that he signed claims that the signatories are proud supporters of academic freedom, yet they then go on to call for a boycott of Israeli academics!)

The condemnation has been quick in coming, with Dartmouth Professors, Jewish groups and national media outlets criticizing the appointment. Attention has also been drawn to the hypocrisy shown by the university’s administration. A few months ago, the President of Dartmouth issued a condemnation of the immigration policies of the newly elected President Trump. In that letter, President Hanlon called for the policies to be revoked, and made the following proud statement:

“Dartmouth’s commitment to the free and open exchange of ideas, global research, and education manifests itself in dozens of partnerships and in international study and exchange programs. Our engagement with the full human diversity of backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences is critical—to both the strength of the Dartmouth community and the effectiveness of Dartmouth’s learning and leadership. We recognize, value, and celebrate the essential contributions of our international students and scholars.”

Yet now, the University has appointed a supporter of BDS as a dean. What happened to the engagement with a full range of perspectives and backgrounds? Does the President no longer believe that international scholars are important? Are we meant to understand that Dartmouth will “recognize, value and celebrate” the essential contributions of absolutely everyone, except for Israelis?

This is simply untenable. The BDS campaign is a sham, lead by radicals, which stands for the exact opposite of what a university stands for. Either Professor Duthu should publicly pull his support from such a movement, or he should de facto be considered ineligible for the role of Dean of Faculty.

Contributed by CAMERA intern Aron White.

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