Right on the Harvard Law School website (here) one can learn that the school has deemed and recognized Israel in a recent report to the United Nations as “an apartheid regime.”
The full 22 page report can be read here, and claims that Israel systematically discriminates against Palestinians and suppresses their civil and political rights.” Harvard’s report “finds that Israel’s actions in the occupied West Bank are in breach of the prohibition of apartheid and amount to the crime of apartheid under international law.”
Other statements include that “Since 1967, Israel has exerted full control throughout most of the occupied West Bank”, the “regime functions in purpose and effect to create a two tiered structure of rights and protections, systematically privileging Jewish Israeli settlers and discriminating against Palestinians.”
The report further criticizes Israel for banning six Palestinian organizations which Israel has accused of terrorism. In a section headlined “Apartheid in the Occupied West Bank”, the report says that “A finding of apartheid in the occupied West Bank requires ascertaining whether the Israeli occupation has committed: (i) inhuman act(s), (ii) with the intent to establish or maintain domination of Jewish Israelis over Palestinians, (iii) in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic racial discrimination and oppression.”
The report goes on to state that “Israel’s prevalent and well-documented practices of arbitrarily detaining Palestinians under the guise of broadly defined security offenses, denying Palestinian detainees’ basic fair trial and due process rights, using ill-treatment and torture with impunity, and placing Palestinians in prolonged administrative detention without charges or trial, together can amount to the inhuman act of denying Palestinians the right to liberty of person.”
They further accuse Israel of “inhuman acts”, “and the deliberate creation of conditions preventing the full development of such a group by denying them basic human rights and freedoms.”
Harvard Law School goes on to accuse Israel of “persecution”, severely restricting Palestinians’ exercise of their basic rights to free expression and free association and assembly (of which surely there is a lot of under the Palestinian Authority). Nowhere in the report is there any nuance – no mention of terrorism against Israel, security concerns, the Palestinian Authority’s human rights records, Israel’s rights to any of the land.
The report concludes that Israel practices apartheid.
Not surprising in reading this report, one can find at Harvard Law School a spring 2022 class on “Law, Human Rights, and Social Justice in Israel and Palestine” taught by Ms. Salma Waheedi. Ms. Waheedi has signed a letter to “express solidarity with the Palestinian people in their struggle for freedom and self-determination. Israeli state violence has devastated Palestinian life through a combination of warfare, territorial theft, and violent displacement. Unwavering US financial, military, and political support has fueled an apartheid system that institutionalizes the domination and repression of Palestinians.”
A number of Harvard Law School professors go on to state that “Palestinians are not only denied freedom and self-determination, they are even denied the right to resist. Palestinian resistance in all its forms is criminalized by Israel and the US. Every measure of self-defense by a people without a state or an army against a nuclear power backed by the US. They “demand an end to US support for Israel’s apartheid regime, condemn Israeli state aggression, and affirm our support for the Palestinian liberation struggle.”
The report was co-authored by Adameer, an organization which among other things NGO Monitor maintains “vehemently opposed a new clause in European Union grant contracts with Palestinian NGOs that prohibits grantees from working with and funding organizations and individuals designated on the EU’s terror lists.
According to media reports, PNGO claimed that Palestinian terrorist organizations are “political parties.”
Addameer is an “affiliate” of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a terrorist organization designated as such by the US, EU, Canada, and Israel.
Israel’s Ministry of Defense declared Addameer a “terror organization” because it is part of “a network of organizations” that operates “on behalf of the ‘Popular Front’.” Addameer’s founder and former chairperson, was banned in 2017 and 2019 from traveling due to his alleged membership in the PFLP.
Harvard Law School’s partner, Adameer refers to the Israeli army as the “Israeli Occupying Forces,” and accuses Israel of “collective punishment,” “war crimes,” and a “policy of using Palestinian prisoners as pawns to achieve political and military gains.” The organization has worked with pro-BDS organizations and more.
Ironically, on the front page of the Harvard Law School page is news of a gift from investment executive Mitchell R. Julis to establish the Julis-Rabinowitz Program in Jewish and Israeli Law.
In explaining the family gift, Julis said: “My parents, grandparents and relatives made sure that the rich heritage of Judaism, including its values and history, and the importance of Israel, both to the Jewish People and the world, were consistent parts of our spiritual and intellectual growth. This gift to Harvard Law School is in deep gratitude and love for the gift of heritage our families gave us and which we have strived to give to our children.”
Mr. Julis – and all donors to Harvard Law School – should examine if they want their money to go to an institution which deems Israel an apartheid regime.