The ban on Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at Northeastern University in Boston on March 7, 2014, along with a threat from the university on disciplinary action against some of its members, is just one example of sanctions being imposed on a number of Palestinian student rights groups across the United States.
The attacks, and other similar disturbing forms of punishment, appear to be part of a coordinated action by the Israeli government and the Israeli lobby in the United States to blacklist all student groups challenging the official Israeli narrative.
Northeastern University banned the SJP department after it sent out copies of evictions that are routinely set up at Palestinian homes that are threatened with demolition. The university announced that students would be banned, saying that if SJP asks to be reinstated next year, “no current members of Students for Justice in Palestine's main board could sit on the board of the new organization », and further that representatives from the organization will have to review the university« «schooling».
Retraining seminars and right-wing Israeli groups
In 2011, ten students who at UC Irvine in California had interrupted a speech given by Michael Oren, then Israeli ambassador to the United States, were found guilty, given a probationary period and sentenced to perform community service. Israeli citizen Oren, who has since been hired by the television company CNN, has called on Congress to blacklist supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel and to prosecute those who demonstrate against Israeli officials.
They were deprived of student leadership positions after leaving the venue during a speech given by an Israeli military.
Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine (CSJP) was abruptly banned in the spring of 2011 and denied being able to reserve rooms or hold events on campus. Prior to this ban, the university administration had a practice of notifying the Hillel campus in advance of any CSJP event.
The expulsion was eventually lifted after a protest led by CSJP's lawyers.
Max Geller, law student and SJP member at the Northeastern that I reached by phone in Boston, accused the university of responding "to outside pressure," including that of former student Robert Shillman, now CEO of Cognex Corp., and hedge fund billionaire Seth Klarman, both supporters of right-wingers Israeli groups.
Geller said the following: "Forbidding students to hold leadership roles, and banning student groups just because they have engaged in a peaceful political activity, violates the university's task of educating students. In the last year, I have received death threats, been publicly and unfairly insulted. . .
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