For the past two weeks the New University has printed a number of articles criticizing the Muslim Student Union's "Israel: Apartheid Resurrected" week, calling it anti-Semitic, extremist, and uninformative. However, unfortunate as it may be to those who made the previously mentioned claims, the week did not embody any of those characteristics.
Alex Chazen was right when he said that someone would come forth correcting the statement that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Judaism. Zionism, as it is defined by the American Heritage Dictionary, is "an organized movement of world Jewry that arose in Europe in the late 19th century with the aim of reconstituting a Jewish state in Palestine. Modern Zionism is concerned with the development and support of the state of Israel." Zionism, by being a movement which supports the development of a nation, is thusly not in any way the same as Judaism. Judaism is a way of life derived through the scriptures given to humanity by God. Simply because a significant group of Jews support the political idea of Zionism does not make it the same as the religion of Judaism itself. To learn about a religion, look to its scriptures, not to its followers.
The "Israel: Apartheid Resurrected" week was thus aimed not to coerce a desire to "kill a few Jews" but to expose the state of Israel for what it truly is: a land that practices apartheid, not peace. The evidence is irrefutable. If simply "showing off the beautiful culture of the [Palestinian] people" were enough to put an end to the typical student's apathy, I am sure a different approach to the week could have been taken. However, the fact of the matter remains that Israeli forces are causing destruction to Palestinians every day, and people are still in denial of the fact that Israeli forces are occupying the land of the Palestinians and murdering them without reason.
Sadly people like Alex Chazen need more information than this in order for the Palestinians to "earn them [his] respect or concern." I guess the fact children are being brutally oppressed, that Palestinian houses are being razed and destroyed to make more room for Israeli settlers, that the apartheid wall forces some people to carry up to three permits every day simply to get to work, is not enough reason to have respect for human beings. Perhaps he agrees with Rabbi Yaacov Perrin that "one million Arabs are not worth a Jewish fingernail," or maybe he agrees with former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Maier when he said, "There was no such thing as a Palestinian people…It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn't exist." This would, of course, make perfect sense as the Gaza Strip is one of the most densely populated pieces of land in the world today.
Reut Cohen claims that MSU members to whom she has spoken "don't support a two-state solution," and implies that this means they "want Israelis out [of Palestine]." However, supporting a one-state solution is not the same as "wanting Israelis out." The land of Palestine should be returned to its rightful owners, and a democratic state should be established in which all those residing on the lands of Palestine can live in freedom, equality, and peace. If Israel were truly a democracy, perhaps these goals would have been achieved.
Cohen goes on to claim that MSU members have "harassed and intimidated" those who are Jewish or pro-Israel, where this is not the case in the slightest. Many of these "incidents documented on [their] cameras" are not harassment nor were they committed by MSU members. Perhaps they were more random idiots like the "young male wearing a head scarf covering his face and holding a sign reading: 'Death to Israel--Death to America.'" Although this student was not a member of the MSU, teacher Gary Fouse and his colleague unfortunately bought into that poor man's ruse to discredit the Muslim Student Union, just as Cohen tries to do by falsely accusing MSU members of intimidation.
While certain people like Chris Kilpatrick believe that "MSU harbors extremists that support ideas similar to those who seek the destruction of humanity," the truth is quite the opposite. If speaking out against the oppression of massive amounts of people is not a humanitarian cause, I'll be honest and tell you that I don't know what is. "Israel: Apartheid Resurrected" week was dedicated to further the voices of the oppressed Palestinian peoples. When one disregards the horrific circumstances of millions of people in order to further their own political gain, I would consider that to be pretty extremist and destructive to humanity. To do that would be up to par with ignoring the Jewish Holocaust. So what is the FBI really investigating here? The MSU does not harbor extremism nor does it support anti-Jewish sentiments. It seems that these calls for investigations are only in efforts to suppress one thing: the truth.