In early February, Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz addressed a full house at the Zellerbach Theater at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Pennsylvania, to add his contribution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict debate brewing on campus. The event was presented by the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, Hillel of Greater Philadelphia and Penn Hillel.
Dershowitz was invited to speak in anticipation of the National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions conference, which was planned for that weekend on The University of Pennsylvania’s campus. According to the conference’s website, BDS’ goal is to “boycott, divest from and sanction (BDS) the State of Israel until it complies with its obligations under international and human rights law.”
According to the Daily Pennsylvanian, Dershowitz made “the 80-percent case for Israel.” He advocated supporting Israel’s right to exist but expressed willingness to criticize Israeli policies with which he disagreed.
Dershowitz called the implication that Israel is a apartheid regime “absurd.” He challenged Israel’s critics to name another country that, faced with comparable threats, had a better human rights record. He said that Israel was the only liberal democracy and nation that recognizes women’s rights and the rights of the gay community in the Middle East. And at one point, he even said that University of Pennsylvania professors who support BDS werre “complacent with evil.”
They didn’t like that. This week, one Stephen Lendman went after Dershowitz with a vengeance: “Inviting him was disgraceful. He’s a shameless bigot, a longstanding Islamophobe, a perverter of fundamental U.S. and international law, an advocate of war, torture targeted assassinations and collective punishment, as well as a committed Zionist and apologist for Israel’s worst crimes.”
Lendman even cited Law Professor Francis Boyle, who wrote that Dershowitz is “a self-incriminated war criminal who publicly admitted that he serves on a Mossad Committee that authorizes the murder and assassination of Palestinians,” and is “also infamous around the world for being this country’s foremost advocate for torture.”
Then Lendman added this pearl: “Throughout its century-long history, ADL hyped unfounded anti-Semitism hysteria as a cover for backing Jewish supremacy and rights of Israelis over Arabs. They include militarized occupation and belligerently enforced apartheid.”
We apologize for the unfounded anti-Semitism hysteria of the past 100 years, and will now return quietly to our gas chambers.