Zionist groups at Rutgers spread racist, hateful propaganda
Last Tuesday, Students for Justice in Palestine held a “die-In” at Brower Commons to commemorate 140 of the 501 Palestinian children killed by the Israeli military during last summer’s Operation Protective Edge. While this event was meant to shed light on Israeli human rights abuses and honor the dead, students from Hillel and AEPi, who knew about the event in advance, set up a table in counter protest. Mid-ceremony, these students began to accuse these dead children, many of whom were under two years of age, of being “terrorists” or that “they were probably throwing rocks” (as if that justifies the murder of children). After these accusations, several Zionist students proceeded to dance in celebration over the dead children these activists were emulating. One Zionist student, according to several witnesses, even began to attempt to move a “dead” activist and proceeded to wave his foot in his face, provoking the activist to give him the middle finger. Following this incident, the Rutgers chapter of Rabbinical College of America propagandized this story, stating “Jewish students stood proud in support of Israel and peace, while Muslim students from SJP spread hate toward Israel and the local Jewish students.” For an organization affiliated with Hillel’s “Anti-Hate” campaign, there is an indescribable amount of hate being propagated from their membership. First and foremost, the people participating in the die-in were not all Muslim. I, a Puerto Rican atheist, was in attendance. But in addition, there were others of all creeds and religions — even several Jews came in solidarity to oppose the abhorrent murder of children carried out by the state of Israel. For RCA Rutgers to claim it represents all Jewish students and that SJP represents all Muslim students is not just ignorant, but anti-Semitic. Whether the Zionist counter protesters retained such diversity, as we did, on that day is unknown to me, since I never made the assumption that one must be Jewish to support a neo-colonial military occupation. These hateful stereotypes are unfounded because the struggle for national liberation is not a religious one — it is a social, political and economic struggle. It saddens me to think that I attend a university where one group of people’s ignorance toward another people is so prevalent that they not only wish death upon their youngest generations, but also celebrate it and dance to its thought.
Don Courter is a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore majoring in history and Russian language and literature.