Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Ceremony to be Broadcast in English

Our friends at Yad Vashem are announcing this English language broadcast of the 2013 Erev Yom HaShoah (Holocaust memorial) service:

The National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) network http://nrb.org/ in partnership with the Christian Friends of Yad Vashem http://www.yadvashem.org/yv/en/about/friends/christian/index.asp will for the first time ever be broadcasting the Erev Yom HaShoah (Eve of the Holocaust Memorial Day) state ceremony from Yad Vashem, Jerusalem.

The event took place on April 7, 2013 and will be broadcast with an English translation during the month of July. The broadcast is a historic event since this is the first time our friends in the USA will be able to watch the program in this manner. Note that there is also an online watching opportunity for our international friends.

Seminar: The UCU, Antisemitism and the Boycott Campaigns Against Israel

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The Louis D. Brandeis Center was recently made aware of an upcoming conference which readers may find interesting. One of the main topics of discussion will be the recent Fraser v. UCU court case, a very important case which several contributors to the Brandeis Center’s blog have analyzed throughout the past few weeks.

Thu 11 Jul 2013

The University and College Union (UCU) has passed anti-Zionist resolutions since 2005 and Jewish members have complained about antisemitic tendencies within the union. In 2012 Ronnie Fraser brought a case against the UCU complaining of institutional antisemitism in violation of the Equality Act. However, the employment tribunal handling the case ruled that his complaints of harassment were unfounded. Despite the evidence that was brought forward the judges did not recognise antisemitism in the union and instead accused Fraser of disregarding pluralism, tolerance and freedom of expression by trying to silence his political opponents. This workshop seeks to analyse this case as well as antisemitism in unions and on campus, including anti-Israeli boycott campaigns. It explores why there is a reluctance to recognise anti-Zionist forms of antisemitism in the frame of anti-racism and anti-discrimination.

Kenneth L. Marcus on Campus Anti-Semitism

LDB President Kenneth Marcus recently went on The Edwin Black Show to discuss the anti-Israeli de-legitimization, or BDS (boycott, divest, and sanction) movement. Mr. Marcus, in particular, was able to address what is happening on college campuses in regards to this BDS movement. According to Mr. Marcus, this problem is something repeatedly presenting itself on America’s college campuses all around the country.

What at first may begin as a political sentiment oftentimes, stated Mr. Marcus, turns virulent so to be not just aimed at Israel and Israelis, but also in a sense to Jewish Americans as well. The political movement against Israel transforms into something more foreboding, and is often verbalized in an anti-Semitic fashion, making use of traditional anti-Semitic motifs.

The problem is exacerbated because of the disproportionate influence on college campuses of individuals with extreme positions, especially if they are on the far left. It is not the case, Mr. Marcus states, that most professors and students are anti-Semitic. Rather, it’s a relatively small number of anti-Semitic people in a given situation that get much more attention on a college campus than they would in any other faction of American life. Compounding that, anti-Israeli professors are the ones more likely to be teaching Middle East studies and the Humanities. Additionally, they are the ones who are more likely to say it’s okay to introduce your values into the classroom as well as to be politically active themselves. It follows, then, that anti-Israeli professors are engaged in shifting the politics in a way that supports their movement. All of these factors, says Mr. Marcus, lead to greater anti-Israel, and sometimes anti-Semitic, influence on college campuses.

Speech from Tammi Rossman-Benjamin will Highlight Campus Anti-Semitism

On June 30th, Tammi Rossman-Benjamin will deliver a talk at the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles, California. Entitled “Campus and the New Anti-Semitism”, the talk will focus on “the hostile, anti-Israel climate which university students across the country are facing and the challenges of addressing campus anti-Semitism.” Rossman-Benjamin, a Brandeis Center…

Israel Bashing: Gore Vidal’s Legacy Lives On

The BDS (Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions) Movement’s current, partly successful efforts in the UK, the U.S., and Canada to coopt LGBT activists to undermine tolerant Israel’s right to exist while casting a blind eye to the oppression of gays in the Arab and Muslim world does not come out of thin air. Gore Vidal, who died almost a year ago, laid the groundwork for it.

First, to give Vidal his due as a controversialist. Though denying that “there is no such thing as a homosexual or a heterosexual person,” Vidal is likely to remembered as a trenchant critic of anti-gay prejudice despite his rejecting the term “gay.”

Unfortunately, Vidal coupled his advocacy of gay rights with a hatred of Judaism and the Jewish state.

Although unwilling fully to admit the anti-Semitic implications of his views, Vidal was more honest about what he believed—and whom he hated—than his eulogists who protested too much that Vidal was not an anti-Semite.

There can be few things more painful than being autopsied while still alive. This was the fate of Vidal, whose relationship with Jews and Judaism was dissected over two decades before his death by Edward Alexander whom I update.

Campus Anti-Semitism Fact Sheet Invaluable to Jewish Students

The Brandeis Center has just released an important new resource for Jewish American college students, The Louis D. Brandeis Center’s Short Guide to the Law Against Campus Anti-Semitism. The Short Guide is a Fact Sheet on Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Over 40% of Jewish American college students have admitted to experiencing or being aware of anti-Semitism on their campus, but not many know that they do not just have to stand idly by as they are discriminated against. Crafted by Brandeis Center staff attorney Danit Sibovits, the Fact Sheet shines a light on underused processes available to victims of anti-Semitic biases and sentiments, while helping identify what actually constitutes such an incident.

Top Ten Surprises About Campus Anti-Semitism

Some people might react with skepticism when told that when examining college campuses in the United States, there has been a noticeable resurgence of anti-Semitic incidents, but the trend exists regardless. The Brandeis Center has compiled this list of facts that may surprise some about campus anti-Semitism.

1. High Volume of Incidents in the Last Decade-

Anti-Semitism might not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about bias incidents on college campuses, but in fact, according to Aryeh Weinberg’s findings, over 40% of Jewish students report experiencing or being aware of anti-Semitism on their college campus. During a study on anti-Semitism on college campuses, the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise discovered an even higher amount, that “78% of Jewish students report witnessing or personally experiencing anti-Semitism.” The truly frightening outcome of this rise of anti-Israelism and anti-Semitism is the impact in the classroom, stemming from professors. As Weinberg puts it, “the academic experience of students is being impacted by anti-Israel activism on campus.”