(Photo: William Stadtwald Demchick/Wikimedia Commons)
As the Jerusalem Post reported in March, an event occurred on January 18th titled “A Year to Confront Normalization.” As the name indicates, the event discussed efforts to oppose Arab states that normalized relations with Israel in accordance with the Abraham Accords. The chief organizer of the event was the “Global Campaign to Return to Palestine” (GCRP), a collective of over 60 BDS-supporting groups.
Around the world, BDS activists on college campuses deceitfully paint their movement as one of non-violent protest, but this terrorist-friendly event removed the mask completely. For this event, the GCRP collaborated with terrorist organizations like Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and even the Head of the Iranian parliament. The event – which took place at two separate locations in Gaza and Tehran – was simultaneously aired on Lebanon’s pro-Hezbollah Al-Mayadeen TV channel and livestreamed on Facebook side by side.
Many groups in the GCRP aid one another in their delegitimization efforts against Israel and in the creation of other campus groups. Using this tactic, these groups slowly expand and increase their presence on campuses across the United States.
The January event proved that the GCRP collaborates not merely with other members of the collective and Palestinian terrorist organizations, but also with the Iranian government, which has been pushing for the destruction of “the Zionist entity” since 1979. The GCRP’s collaboration with the Iranian government is unsurprising, considering the group has been active on the ground in Iran for years.
Among the 60 groups that participated in the event was the U.S. Palestinian Community Network (USPCN), a highly influential organization among anti-Zionist student groups. In 2010, USPCN helped create the National Students for Justice in Palestine, which coordinates activities among various SJP chapters, which now number over 200. Furthermore, USPCN maintains its own student committee to coordinate between various student organizations across the US.
Another group that took part in the January event was the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network. Samidoun played an integral role in the #DayofRage and #DaysofResistance protests that swept across the United States last summer, which dealt with police brutality against the Black community. The protests were rife with slogans calling for the destruction of the state of Israel and accusing them of inculcating racist practices into the American police force. In February, Samidoun was designated as a terrorist organization by the Israeli government due to its close extremely close relationship with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). It is also worth mentioning the increasingly deepening ties between the PFLP and Iran, which has been noted by Dr. Jonathan Spyer.
“GCRP collaborates not merely with other members of the collective and Palestinian terrorist organizations, but also with the Iranian government, which has been pushing for the destruction of ‘the Zionist entity’ since 1979.”
If all this was not enough, the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) also participated in the event. The ILPS, which claims to fight for democracy against imperialism, was created by a group of organizations which included the Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM). This movement, which operates primarily in the US and Canada, mourns and glorifies terrorists, organizes university conferences, and organized multiple protests during Samidoun’s aforementioned #DaysofResistance campaign. The ILPS and PYM continue to hold events together, even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
There is no escaping looking reality in the eyes, and understanding that despite these groups’ self-righteous appearance, a “cognitive bomb” hides beneath the surface that will resort to any means to brainwash American students against Israel, even if it means collaborating with terrorist organizations and a destructive country like Iran.
The situation is especially worrying when one considers that this ticking bomb is growing ever larger, encompassing more college campuses, and penetrating the consciousness of students that will one day serve in key American governmental institutions.
Originally published in Hebrew in Mida.
Click here to read the Hebrew version.
Contributed by 2020-2021 Hebrew University CAMERA Fellow, Michal Amar.