UCLA’s Bruins For Israel will meet tonight with several other pro-Israel student groups on campus to discuss a new resolution against anti-Semitism. This resolution was proposed in the aftermath of a student potentially denied a position on the school’s judicial board for being Jewish.
On February 19th, BFI leaders partnered with Globemed internal president, active Students for Justice in Palestine member and USAC general representative Sofia Moreno Haq for their fourth annual Achy Breaky Heart fundraiser for charity. Haq had engaged in anti-Semitic debate regarding a Jewish student applicant’s background just the previous week, February 10th, in a USAC meeting. BFI’s intentions in partnering with Haq despite her comments about the Jewish community remain unclear.
BFI’s support for the pro-Hamas organization SJP is evident by their repeated defense of SJP. BFI recently joined several pro-Israel organizations such as Hillel and J Street to condemn posters that appeared at the UCLA campus on February 22nd accusing SJP of anti-Semitism. BFI’s supportive presence was also noted at an SJP-run town hall in which SJP leaders congratulated BFI and Hillel at UCLA for uniting with them against bigotry, i.e. the anti-SJP posters.
In a twitter conversation on February 24th, BFI defended SJP at UCLA against a comment accusing SJP of supporting Hamas and hosting convicted murderer Rasmea Odeh. BFI responded, “Palestinian activists should be the first to condemn Hamas. They are as big a threat to Palestinians as they are to Israelis.” BFI further defended that SJP at UCLA “did not host [Rasmea] Odeh. UCLA is unique from every other campus, please understand that.”
This was wrong. According to Shillman journalist Daniel Greenfield in FrontPageMag,
UCLA SJP has hosted Amir Abdel Malik who once brandished a check made out to Hamas, Palestine and called for an anti-Semitic backlash.
It hosted Hatem Bazian, SJP’s co-founder, who raised money for Hamas and trafficked in anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. It hosted Alison Weir who claimed that medieval Jews drank blood. It hosted Taher Herzallah who wrote that “Hamas’ rockets are an oppressed people’s audible cry for help.”
Moreover, SJP at UCLA has been supportive of Odeh promoting fundraisers for her release from federal confinement. A hashtag #FreeRasmeaNow exists on SJP at UCLA’s Facebook page from December 5, 2014, urging members to pressure officials in Michigan who held custody of Odeh.
A resolution against anti-Semitism is commendable. Supporting anti-Semites in the process is not.