Thursday, December 09, 2021

  • Thursday, December 09, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon
In recent years, American universities have been appointing large numbers of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) staff with the intention of creating more tolerant environments on campus for students from all backgrounds.

The Heritage Foundation did a study of the tweets from over 700 DEI staff, and found that when it comes to Zionism and Israel, they are quite intolerant.

The analysis is somewhat predictable but still shocking:

To measure antisemitism among university DEI staff, we searched the Twitter feeds of 741 DEI personnel at 65 universities to find their public communications regarding Israel and, for comparison purposes, China. Those DEI staff tweeted, retweeted, or liked almost three times as many tweets about Israel as tweets about China. Of the tweets about Israel, 96 percent were critical of the Jewish state, while 62 percent of the tweets about China were favorable. There were more tweets narrowly referencing “apartheid” in Israel than tweets indicating anything favorable about Israel whatsoever. The overwhelming pattern is that DEI staff at universities pay a disproportionately high amount of attention to Israel and nearly always attack Israel.

While criticism of Israel is not necessarily antisemitic, the inordinate amount of attention given to Israel and the excessive criticism directed at that one country is evidence of a double-standard with respect to the Jewish state, which is a central feature of a widely accepted definition of antisemitism.

 Frequently accusing Israel of engaging in genocide, apartheid, settler colonialism, ethnic cleansing, and other extreme crimes while rarely leveling similar criticisms toward China indicates an irrational hatred that is particularly directed toward Jews and not merely a concern for human rights.

The evidence presented in this Backgrounder demonstrates that university DEI staff are better understood as political activists with a narrow and often radical political agenda rather than promoters of welcoming and inclusive environments. 

 Rather than promoting diversity and inclusion, universities may be contributing to an increase in anti-Jewish hatred by expanding DEI staff and power.
This chart summarizes the main findings. 


Anyone who thinks that Israel is a worse violator of human rights than China is pretty much guaranteed to be an antisemite.

Meanwhile, the ADL released its own study of campus anti-Zionism that often veers into antisemitic tropes:

Continuing a historic trend, in 2020-2021 a segment of campus anti-Israel groups and activists engaged in rhetoric that incorporated antisemitic tropes, including those related to alleged Jewish power and control over the media or political affairs. While major anti-Israel groups state their opposition to antisemitism on their websites, they repeatedly appear unaware, ambivalent or defiant when their own rhetoric about Israel and Zionism becomes offensive or plays into antisemitic themes. More often, they deny that it is even possible for anti-Israel or anti-Zionist rhetoric to be antisemitic. While only a minority of anti-Israel activity on campus explicitly references antisemitic tropes, the large volume of anti-Israel activity ensures many Jewish students will encounter bigotry.

In addition to the use of antisemitic tropes and themes, anti-Israel rhetoric can become antisemitic when opposition to Zionism turns into the active maligning, exclusion and denigration of Zionism and Zionists. During the 2020-2021 academic year such a pattern was evident, in particular during the May 2021 Israel-Hamas conflagration. Viewing Zionists as inherently nefarious and undeserving of certain rights can lead to many Jewish students feeling isolated and under siege. Moreover, the vitriol aimed at Jews who support Israel’s existence is rarely matched with energy targeting non-Jews, most of whom also recognize and support Israel’s existence.







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