Harvard Faculty Members Condemn Student Newspaper’s Endorsement of BDS

The Harvard Crimson building, student newspaper of Harvard University. (Beyond My Ken)

By Hamodia Staff

YERUSHALAYIM – The Harvard University campus has become a battleground pitting faculty members against the student newspaper over the latter’s endorsement of BDS, The Times of Israel reported on Monday.

Seventy Harvard-affiliated faculty condemned The Crimson for its support of the boycott of Israel, published in the paper ten days ago.

The faculty statement released on Monday was signed by prominent scholars including Steven Pinkner, Ruth Wisse, Jesse Fried, Gabriella Blum, and Lawrence Summers, a former president of the university and secretary of treasury under former president Barack Obama.

An editor at the newspaper and at least eight former staffers also condemned the editorial board’s endorsement of the BDS movement on April 29.

“As members of the faculty of Harvard University, we are dismayed by The Crimson Editorial Board’s enthusiastic endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel,” they said in a statement released on Monday.

“In seeking to delegitimize Israel through diplomatic, economic, academic, and cultural isolation, and by opposing the very notions of Jewish peoplehood and self-determination, BDS is disrespectful of Jews, the vast majority of whom view an attachment to Israel as central to their faith identity,” the faculty said.

The statement also said the signatories were “deeply concerned” about the endorsement’s impact “on the morale and well-being of Jewish and Zionist students at Harvard.”

The faculty voiced support for continued ties with Israel, and acknowledged students’ right to support BDS, but said they were “firmly opposed to this movement” that “contributes to antisemitism.”

In a response to the denunciation, the Crimson’s president Raquel Coronell Uribe said the newspaper was committed to “journalistic integrity, freedom of the press, and freedom of expression.”

“The Crimson strives for diversity and inclusivity in all respects, from diversity of identity to diversity of opinion,” she said. “The Crimson rejects discrimination, including antisemitism, in all its forms — both among our staff and in our pages.”

The Crimson endorsed BDS at the end of Israeli Apartheid Week on the campus, which included events featuring the well-known anti-Israel speakers Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein.

“We are proud to finally lend our support to both Palestinian liberation and BDS — and we call on everyone to do the same,” the Crimson’s editorial board wrote.

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