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  • DePaul to Vote on Anti-Israel Measure

    5/21/2014 3:43:44 PM Posted by Brendan Pringle

    IsraeliflagNext week, DePaul University will be the latest college to vote on whether to divest funds from 12 multinational companies that do business in Israel.

    Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at DePaul, led by Leila Abdul Razzaq, is spearheading the initiative at the private Catholic university, which is affiliated with the international Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which refuses to acknowledge the legitimacy of Israeli borders.

    For those who don't know, the main force behind the BDS movement is Omar Barghouti, who has repeatedly voiced his opposition to Israel's very existence and stated that BDS' demands will result in "a Palestine next to a Palestine", eliminating Jewish self-determination in the state.

    Throughout the week, students will have the opportunity to place their vote on the referendum, which is framed by the slanted  question"Do you think that DePaul should follow socially responsible investment practices and divest its funds from companies that profit from Israel's discrimination and human rights violations?"

    Such a skewed proposition worries opponents that misinformed students won't know the facts before voting. As Caleb Bromberg, a Jewish student who is part of the campaign against the measure, told the Chicago Tribune: "There's a ton of people who love to involve themselves with things that they don't know enough about, and I'm really afraid that's what's going to happen here."

    SJP at DePaul has created a website dedicated to the campus movement, which describes the precedent that has been set on campus. Back in 2011, DePaul students gave into SJP's anti-Semitic propaganda, and  boycotted Sabra hummus on campus because of its ties to two Israeli army brigades. 

    Nearly 80 percent of student voters bought into the propaganda and supported the measure.

    Between the propaganda and the campus' anti-Israel precedent, things aren't looking up for the pro-Israel opposition. However, other campus groups have been successful in their efforts to stop divestment campaigns.

    Student leadership at UCLA recently put forward a similar measure calling on the university system's Board of Regents to divest from companies in Israel. After hours of student testimony, the student government voted against the measure-a vote that is currently being disputed by the campus SJP chapter, albeit for comical reasons.

    Likewise, not far from DePaul at Loyola University, the student government passed a divestment resolution twice back in March of this year, but the resolution was vetoed by the university administration and the student body president.

    One can only hope that the students at DePaul will see behind the lies and falsehoods propagated by SJP and its pro-BDS allies and vote on the side of freedom and democracy.

    Brendan Pringle is a Development Officer at the Reagan Ranch Center and a National Journalism Center alum.

    • Readers' Comments

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