A group of students in the US city of New York have held lectures against the Israeli occupation of Palestine, seeking to defend the right to criticize Israel in academia.
Activist students at the New School University in New York held a meeting recently as part of the Israeli Apartheid Week, an annual series of university lectures and rallies to educate people about the nature of Israel as an “apartheid system.”
Israeli Apartheid Week also aims to build Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns as part of a growing global boycott movement against Israel around the world.
Ironically, the New School University, which was established in 1919, greatly expanded when it became a refuge for Jewish professors and other academics that fled Germany.
Palestinian Lawyer Amin Hussain addressed the packed meeting, urging students to oppose Israel, and link the Palestinian cause with other rising social movements.
“We should focus on who we are, the struggles are connected and we need to fight in the ways that we can because the resistance and the fight changes us inside, and that matters,” Hussain told Press TV.
Activists emphasized the importance of recognizing that Palestinian refugees have the right to return to their homeland under international law, and not granting any legitimacy to Israel.
They also discussed various strategies and plans to target businesses which invest in Israel and participate in the regime’s crimes.
David Letwin, a leader of Jews Against Israeli Apartheid said that Jewish professors and academics have a responsibility to raise their voices in support of Palestine.
“We feel that as Jews, we have a role to play in speaking out against not only the crimes that Israel commits, but the very idea of an apartheid, what they call ‘Jewish state’ in Palestine,” Letwin said.
Human rights monitor Amnesty International has said that the Israeli regime committed war crimes during the latest war on the besieged Gaza Strip.
“All the evidence we have shows this large-scale destruction was carried out deliberately and with no military justification,” Philip Luther, director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa program said in December.
Over 2,140 Palestinians, including a large number of women, children, and the elderly, were killed in the 50 days of the Israeli onslaught on Gaza, which began early in July, 2014.