May 01, 2014

IJAN: Defend Freedom of Speech, Academic Freedom and Campus Organizing

Take Action: Defend Freedom of Speech

Defend Freedom of Speech, Academic Freedom and Campus Organizing

Join IJAN in defending the rights of students and professors to learn about, teach about and organize for justice in Palestine. 
Congratulations to Northeastern University – Students for Justice in Palestine for their reinstatement after having being wrongfully suspended. 

The Palestine solidarity movement has and will continue to successfully defend ourselves against attempts to censor our freedom of speech and anti-racist organizing.

Take Action

Despite ongoing attempts to quash the speech of faculty and students alike, the campus movement for justice in Palestine has gone from strength to strength. It has passed divestment resolutions in student assemblies at the University of Michigan-Dearborn and Loyola, successfully organized to reinstate Students for Justice in Palestine at Northeastern University, gathered professors to defend the American Studies Association landmark endorsement of the academic boycott, won endorsement of the Asian American Studies Association and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association. Campus organizers have incrementally built the level of struggle while facing attacks, as with the Students Allied for Freedom and Equality’s inspiring sit-ins at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor which forced their student government to vote on their boycott resolution. 
Israel’s defenders, aware that their longstanding attempt to control public opinion is faltering, are investing over $300 million in propaganda, surveillance, and repressive litigation in attempts to silence solidarity with Palestine by making false accusations of antisemitism. 
By now, the pattern of institutional muzzling of voices advocating for an open hearing for the Palestinian cause is unmistakable: Northeastern University with its Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) suspended until the movement forced its reinstatement, NYU falsely accused of anti-Semitism for distributing home demolition orders to highlight the destruction of Palestinian homes by the State of Israel, Florida Atlantic University students forced into re-education programs, a call for the removal of Palestinian professor Rabab Abdulhadi at San Francisco State University, and University of California-Irvine students facing state charges for voicing opposition to the presence of state apologists following the brutal 2008-2009 assault on the Gaza Strip. 
Coordinating the charge against the growing support for justice in Palestine is the Israel Action Network (IAN), a strategic initiative of the Jewish Federations of North America and the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, launched in October 2010 with an initial three-year, $6 million investment. 
A sister project, the national Israeli Campus Coalition, is a national network of students, faculty and professionals dedicated to combating Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS), tracking “anti-Israel” organizing on campus and coordinating an "early warning system" to alert campus constituents and national partners about anti-Israel activity. They recruit, train and resource campus activists – students and faculty – and organizations to carry out the goal of silencing any criticism of Israel or support for the Palestinian struggle by every available means. 
This agenda threatens many things people of conscience hold dear: free speech, academic freedom, the sanctity of universities as places of anti-racist organizing, self-determination of oppressed peoples, and ethnic studies. 
Join us in encouraging campus administrators to protect these strongholds of freedom and justice and protect students, professors and faculty from this bullying. 


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