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September 27, 2016 / 24 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘university of florida’

Jews! Three Days to Get Out!

Sunday, June 26th, 2016

An article appeared this week in the newspaper, Israel HaYom, describing how a pro-Palestinian BDS group targeted Jewish students on a college campus in America, by posting signs in their dormitories telling Jews to vacate the premises, saying that was how the Israeli army treated the Palestinians. These signs have been taped to the door of dormitory rooms of Jewish students, giving the occupants three days to vacate, and warning that their belongings will be thrown into the street if they don’t abide by the order. This is the work of a BDS group called SJP – “Students for Palestinian Justice”. The signs appeared on many campuses across the United States, including the University of Florida and Berkley College.

Outrageous? Terrible? Scandalous? Not at all. I for one am glad. At least someone in the United States is telling young Jews that they don’t belong in America. Their rabbis don’t tell them. Their parents don’t tell them. The Hillel organization doesn’t tell them. The leaders of Jewish Federations and MAJOR JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS don’t tell them. At least the Jew haters are letting them know. Kol Hakod!

I’m glad. Though I am not convinced the Jews will get the message. A Jewish student from Berkley had this to say: “The connection which the SJP makes between our being Jews and their protest over the Palestinian plight in Israel smacks of anti-Semetism. A distinction must be made between their criticism of the situation in Israel and my being Jewish. I have nothing to do with what goes on in Israel. There is no justice in targeting me on my college campus just because I am Jewish.”

Notice what he says: “I have nothing to do with what goes on in Israel.” Notice how he cuts himself off from Israel. In his eyes, he is an American, not an Israeli. This in itself is the crisis of American Jewry and the reason for the ever-increasing assimilation. In truth, he is the true refugee from “Palestine” whom the Romans expelled from the one and only Jewish Homeland – Israel.

Because of our long exile and wanderings in foreign lands, this Jewish college student in America has forgotten his true identity. His parents, and rabbis, and teachers, and Jewish leaders, don’t tell him this truth because they too have forgotten. Rabbi Kook decries this tragedy of Jewish education in the Diaspora which fails to teach that the Land of Israel is an indivisible part of being Jewish, stating, “This orientation toward Eretz Yisrael is not worthy of bearing fruit. The concept of Judaism in the Diaspora will only find real strength through the depth of its connection to Eretz Yisrael.”

So if none of the Jewish educators and leaders are teaching young Jews the truth, it is a good thing that the boys from BDS are letting them know. More power to them!

Tzvi Fishman

Hecklers Flee Israeli Speaker at U of Florida

Friday, October 18th, 2013

Anat Berko is a small-framed woman known for her ubiquitous yards long braid.  She is also one of the world’s leading counter terrorism experts who has sat in prison cells next to some of the most dangerous serial killers and attempted homicide bombers who ever lived.

A handful of anti-Israel University of Florida students chose the wrong speaker to interrupt.

Berko was at the Gainesville campus on Thursday, Oct. 10, as the guest of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).

According to CAMERA fellow Avia Gridi, with approximately 7,000 Jewish students, the University of Florida has the single largest number of Jewish students at any university in the United States.

This is Gridi’s first year as a CAMERA fellow and the “More Hummus, Less Hamas” evening with Berko was her first event.

The Smarter Bomb is Berko’s second book about homicide bombers.  In it she tells the story of the women and children who are induced to attempt to become homicide bombers.  Berko knows the experience of those women well.  She spent decades inside Israeli prisons interviewing the women who failed to martyr themselves either because of a technical malfunction or because the authorities were able to disrupt the plans.

Berko gained the trust of dozens of such women in Israeli cells. Her particular interest in writing The Smarter Bomb was to uncover the motivation of the women and children to attempt to commmit such acts, especially the difference in motivations between women and men.

Having as your laboratory the prison cells of people who attempted to kill – they say “martyr” – themselves in order to murder Israeli men, women and children is not the choice of someone who is easily frightened.  But in addition to being a social scientist, Berko is also a Lieutenant Colonel (Res) in the Israel Defense Forces. That is also not a career choice for people who are easily intimidated. And Berko isn’t.

So eight minutes after Berko began speaking at Pugh Hall last Thursday night, when four students, who had arrived late, suddenly stood up, removed their outer shirts and began chanting accusations, Berko was having none of it.

“Hamas is not the Problem, the Israeli Occupation Is!” and “The IDF kills women and children!” were the slogans drawn on the students shirts, and chanted by the students.

“What is wrong with you?” Berko sharply addressed the four. “Sit down and listen to what I have to say and wait for the question and answer portion of this event to raise your issues!”

But the four students who later identified themselves as members of the seemingly ubiquitous, but certainly infamous, Students for Justice in Palestine were not interested in listening to Berko.  They came to make their own voices heard.

“She seemed disgusted by the display,” Gridi told The Jewish Press.

And then Berko really let them have it.

“You think the IDF kills children? You should go to Syria, where everyone knows they are murdering thousands of children with gas and other cruel weapons!  Go to Syria where there are actually thousands of real refugees. They need you to demonstrate in Syria, go!” Berko lectured the SJP hecklers.

And with that, the hecklers left the room and Berko continued her lecture. The people who came to hear about what could possibly motivate women and children (that’s the “smart bomb” Berko means) to want to kill themselves were able to hear from her first hand observations and watch video clips of many who attempted to be smart bombs.

And the four hecklers? They left the room with their tails between their legs, unable to grab the spotlight for their inane chants, unable to disrupt a carefully prepared evening of education which Gridi and CAMERA’s co-sponsors for the event, the ICC, MEMRI and the Gainesville Hillel put on.

“I’m used to sitting in jail cells with serial killers, did they think I would be intimidated by some American college students?” Berko said in a phone interview on Wednesday evening with The Jewish Press.

When asked about the Berko event, Gridi was both pleased and a bit nonplussed.

“The event went really well, although none of it went as expected.”

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israeli-speaker-at-u-of-florida-tells-off-sjp-hecklers-they-flee/2013/10/18/

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