October 19, 2019

Thousands Sign Petition Calling for Columbia to Remove Anti-Zionist Professors

Thousands of people have signed a petition calling for Columbia University to remove anti-Zionist professors from campus.

The petition from #StopAntisemitism states that Columbia populated the university with professors that “well-documented histories of demonizing Israel and the Jewish people” and allows “these professors to freely spread their hateful propaganda without leaving any room for more balanced opinions.”

#StopAntisemitism provided a list of 12 professors as examples, which includes Hamid Dabashi, the professor who has referred to Zionists as “hyenas” and “master thieves.” Another professor, Rashid Khalidi, has downplayed the danger that the Hamas and Hezbollah terror groups pose to the United States and was allegedly a spokesperson for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

Other Columbia professors have denied Israel’s right to exist altogether. For instance, Mahmood Mamdani has said that “Jews can have a homeland in historic Palestine, but not a state.” Similarly, Joseph Massad has said, “The Jews are not a nation” and that Israel “is a racist state that does not have a right to exist.”

“This cuts more deeply for students who happen to be Jewish or support the state of Israel, because they will most likely be attacked, bullied, and harangued into supporting the destruction of the only Jewish state,” the #StopAntisemitism website states. “As supporters of open debate and rigorous academic inquiry, we must ask if this environment truly encourages debate among those with differing viewpoints.”

The petition advocates for Columbia “to condemn anti-Semitism, to remove professors who bluntly promote anti-Israel propaganda, and to hire professors who will provide their students with balanced views of the Middle East.” It also calls on Columbia to disclose any foreign funding they are receiving.

As of publication time, the petition has received more than 4,500 signatures; the goal is 5,000.

Columbia has not responded to the Journal’s request for comment.