A letter to the University of Kent – antisemitism on campus

antisemitism at the University of KentI wish to register a formal complaint against the university of Kent for allowing and promoting antisemitism within campus. In your university I heard mention of the ‘Elders of Zion’. A 100-year-old fake text that details the minutes of a non-existent meeting where Jewish leaders discussed their goal of global Jewish hegemony. It is a forgery responsible for spreading the disease of antisemitism and played a pivotal role everywhere that Jews were persecuted or slaughtered.

Hitler referenced the ‘Elders’ in Mein Kampf and it was taught as a factual document in Nazi schools. It has been claimed that the forgery served as the Nazis’ “warrant for genocide”. You can no more wave the Protocols of the Elders of Zion in my face than you can wave a swastika. There is no ‘context’ that allows for it. What I heard at an event on your campus was raw antisemitism.

Amira Hass said was that what we see today is the result of deliberate planning by a hidden group of Jews called the ‘Elders of Zion’. It was all planned. In a liberal democracy that bends to the will of the elected government, the idea of hidden plans and puppet masters is the stuff of conspiracy theorists. This is a conspiracy about Jews and secret plans for domination. You can listen to the comment itself here:

This in turn means we are not witnessing a natural bubble of cause and effect, violence begets violence, and so on, but rather a deliberate plot to manipulate events so as to serve a higher purpose. Children (on both sides) that die are sacrificed on the altar of the master plan.  It is a classic antisemitic blood libel. Children are being murdered so Jews can have their Matzah.

I frequently go to events about Israel and have developed a thick skin. I let the distortions, lies and propaganda pass me by without blinking. I reject silently most of what Amira Hass spoke as hate speech that misinforms, incites and de-educates. What I am not willing to listen to, nor should I have to, is blatant antisemitism. During her talk, Hass used the word ‘Jewish’ on more than 20 occasions. Not ‘Israeli’, but ‘Jewish’. She invoked the ‘Elders of Zion’.

In recent months in the UK, I have heard talk of Jewish money, been informed of Jewish global control, Jewish blood-lust, Jewish racism, Jewish greed, Jewish media control, Jewish banking control and Jewish plots and conspiracies. At every anti-Israeli event, every single one, it is there, oozing from the delegates like testosterone at a football match.

WP_20160128_18_59_07_ProI walked into your event without anyone asking my identity. Such is the norm. Last week I went to the AGM of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, a meeting of 300 of the heads of this campaign in the heart of London, and not a single policeman stood outside. As you know I cannot hold an event like the one you held a few days ago. I cannot give air to the ‘other narrative’. The logistics make it 100x times more difficult, which in turns means 99% of events on Israel are one sided. In addition, the ‘red fascist’ denial of giving a stage to Israelis, means any argument against the narrative of hate, has to be made by proxy.

In the past fortnight there have been 10 ‘hate’ events such as yours in London alone. It takes months to plan one for ‘the other narrative. It requires security, intense planning and even then, as with the case of a recent event in Manchester, may end up being called off. Just last week on another campus in London one was disrupted due to violence. In that specific event, the violence was directed towards a man who wants to dismantle Israeli settlements and create a Palestinian state. It doesn’t matter to the ‘red fascist’ thugs on campus. You know that this is happening, yet like most VC’s in university today you choose to cave in to the ignorant hatred of a lynch mob.

There is no academic debate being allowed here, no exchange of ideas. “That you didn’t know” antisemitism would be present at such an event is not an answer. You should have known – it is always there. Antisemitism is one of the primary fuels of the anti-Israel campaign. I personally believe if you could remove it, the motor wouldn’t run at all, an opinion built on the experience of attending scores of such events. What we are witnessing is the combined power of 3 strands of antisemitism, far right, far left and Islamic. It is strong, it is insidious and it is infesting universities across the UK. So you cannot claim to be ‘unaware’ unless you have chosen to be. In universities across the UK cowardice, ignorance and bigotry are lending a helping hand to antisemitism.

The horror that modern antisemitism is being spread in campus, amongst the educated, rather than in the deprived neighbourhoods, makes it a considerable threat. One that the University of Kent just assisted. Over here of course, they translate the word ‘Jewish’ as ‘Zionist’ to evade censure, then they can say anything they like. Last week, on the FB timeline of someone advertising your event, I saw a comment of ‘just kill all the Jews’. Two minutes later it had been changed to ‘Bastard Zionists’. In the mind of the author they are one and the same.

As a Jew in the UK there will be no running. I will not sit down and ignore the fact that antisemites are taking control of the streets and the campus. I will not silently turn my back as if I do not know where this road leads. I will not let the University of Kent provide a stage for the Elders of Zion and walk away as if I just have to accept it.

A simple apology is not good enough. 200 people left the room having been fed antisemitism on your campus. These people need to be told that what they applauded was antisemitism. Each of those people is a little bit more ‘extreme’ than they were before hearing the speech. Some had a pure ‘fix’ for their addiction. And the Jews in the UK? Well, we are all just a little bit less safe than we were.

I heard mention of the Elders of Zion in your university. I heard talk of Jewish conspiracies. I look forward to receiving your thoughts.

Yours sincerely

David Collier.

This letter was sent to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kent ON 31/01/2016


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27 thoughts on “A letter to the University of Kent – antisemitism on campus

  1. My Grandmother, a survivor whose entire extended family was wiped out, saved her strongest insult for people of this speaker’s ilk,”Hitler killed the wrong Jews.”

  2. Very well spoken, but two things seem to be eluding you. First, Amira Hass is an Israeli ‘jew’ who happens to hate Jews as much as some of the classical gentile anti-Semites. Every word she writes is poisoned with hatred of her own nation. Secondly, the wind is blowing clear and strong. It is time to bring an end to the British Jewish Exile before Great Britain makes an offer to its Jews that they cannot refuse. It is happening in France and in Britain; America’s turn is not far off. This is because whether we agree or not, the only place in the world that will be safe for Jews is – Israel. The Prophets of the Hebrew Bible all envision a mass I gathering of the Exiles to Israel. It has begun. It is now time to get in step with the program.

    1. The current right wing government in Israel is ensuring that there won’t be an Israel as we know it in the future. They are squashing free speech, calling human rights groups traitors, and driving the educated secular Israelis to the fringes. Israel is becoming more religious and less tolerant, and without peace with the Palestinians, it will become Arab majority in time.

      1. That’s interesting. Just two days ago, I heard Amira Hass say there is no editorial censorship in Israel (I have the recording if you want it). So it seems odd you suggest they are squashing free speech. They do not call all HR groups traitors, but from what I understand worry about *some* of the actions of *some* of the groups. For example I have heard BTS over here in the UK, what exactly they were doing here I do not know, it certainly wasn’t related to human rights. I do have issues with some of the behaviour, so I am not going to pretend I disagree by default, more to suggest you are coming at in from an extremist position anyway. Odd that there is mention of the EOZ and all you can do is talk about Israel. Finally your concern about peace is dependent on it being possible to make peace. What evidence do you have to show me this is possible?

        1. Interesting too that the left wing just gave up on a two state solution stating that the hate and violence makes it impossible. This Gil Michaeli like most hate filled children just wants to feel morally superior and has no real evidence for his outlandish ignorant position. How anyone that lives in the UK can squawk about human rights is beyond me but whatever …

  3. Based on this clip, she’s a pretty lousy public speaker; a lot of rambling non-sequiturs and a lot of platitudes. It’s a pity that UK campuses are such toxic environments that even weak sauce like Hass’ musings fall on eager ears and confirm pre-existing biases about Israel and the existence of mysterious and omnipotent “elders” responsible for all the ills of the Middle East.

  4. One of our tenants is a graduate of UKC, and a fervent Zionist. I am sure she would be willing to write a follow-up letter and email it to you if she had your email address, but she has no internet connection so she uses the library when she can get there. If you email me your address with a link to this page I will forward it to her.

    1. hi, thx, just direct her to this page and tell her to make contact via the contact page. I’ll take it from there.

      1. She doesn’t do websites because her time online is seriously limited so she concentrates on emails – but never clears them.

        1. okay, I understand from both your messages, that this graduate doesn’t have much online access at all. I think it would be best for her then to simply email the VC directly. ‘vicechancellor@kent.ac.uk’ this way she does not need to go online more than once. Just tell her to send to the VC what she would have sent to me.

          1. Will do. But without your contact details she won’t be able to copy you in. You’ve probably got enough to do anyway!

          2. I have just this minute received a copy of the letter she sent … And have managed to copy it! This is what she said:

            ‘Dear Dame Julia,

            I was extremely perturbed to learn of the promotion of the notorious Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a known forgery but circulating widely in Islamic countries and taught as factual in Nazi schools before the war, by Amira Hass at UKC recently. This brings into question not only the credibility of the University itself but also the academic criteria of those of us who are graduates of UKC, doesn’t it?

            Someone who was present at the meeting said that no hint was given to the perhaps 200 people present at the meeting, many of them still teenagers, that it was a forgery and that they had been fed anti-Semitic propaganda. In the present climate do you not think that is dangerous?

            What can be done to correct this serious damage to our reputation?

            Yours sincerely,’

            Short and to the point. She added her name, her degree course, her years of study and her college.

  5. Another spot on letter. I would be very interested to read the response. I wonder whether it will be a bland”dead bat” reply mouthing something about academic freedom somewhere in it.
    Personally, I think that far too many in Academia, who one would think should know better, are hiding behind that freedom at least to acquiesce in an anti-Semitic agenda being spread through the student body. I do not know of any University Code making it at least advisable that where where contentious issues are presented to students, they should also be given the other side of the argument. Are not students supposed to think for themselves and draw their own conclusions after having opposing arguments put to them?
    If they were sitting on a Jury one hopes that they would listen to both Prosecution and Defence arguments and not make a snap judgement when they first see the Defendant in the dock.

    David, just a thought about dissemination of some of your excellent letters and articles (which could be edited to letters), would they not achieve a wider audience by also being addressed to newspapers?

  6. Antisemites on campus keep saying “it’s because of Israel”! What’s the difference with “it is because of the Church”? THIS IS A NEW INQUISITION but this time it is because Israel’s “leaders” are not defending their nation :Netanyahu does not even dare claim sovereighty of Judea/Samaria/Gaza in spite of Israel’slegal rights by all international law standards. Cowardice does not pay off

  7. The moment someone claims that “as-a-Jew” blah blah, as Hass did, , anti-Semitic comments about Jews are not far behind.

  8. She was just so obviously being tongue-in-cheek (cf. Elders of Ziyon blog).

    Also interested to hear what evidence you have to buttress your claim that “the University” – ie. the institution – was “promoting anti-Semitism”.

    1. obvious to you Gabriel. you disappoint me. If I make racist ‘tongue in cheek’ references that would offend blacks in a hall half full of BNP supporters, would you also accept we should just move on? Perhaps, you can do us all a favour, and find us examples where such behaviour is acceptable outside of the discussion of Jews and antisemitism (ie sexism, gender, race and so on). Perhaps a tongue in cheek joke about Gays spreading aids would work in a hall full of people who think homosexuality should be illegal? This wasn’t a comment about a Jewish cabal mentioned in Tel Aviv but in front of PSC members and British students. So interested to hear why you believe a 19 year old from Kent would understand that Amira wasn’t actually referring to the EoZ? Interested too to understand why someone in the audience who believes in Jewish cabals wouldn’t have taken her seriously too?

      Would also love to know if for example, someone on the far right had made remarks about what used to happen to people who acted against the state, whether you would also take those comments to be ‘tongue in cheek’, or rather would you refer to them as dangerous incitement? I dispair sometimes that those who play a vital role on the left don’t seem to understand that principles should hold constant and not be dependant on whether or not you ‘like’ someone or align with them politically. What she did was either deliberate, naive or stupid, whatever the truth (and only she can know), it was a dangerous trick to pull infront of an audience she doesn’t really understand. Do we always have to be on opposite sides Gabriel? Is it the way it is built by default?

        1. I just get tired of the blindly partisan response from wherever it comes. We may not be as far apart as you like to think we are.

          1. That’s also very rude. I am not blindly partisan. I consider each issue on its merits, and if I disagree I say so. What’s your problem with that?

            1. Gabriel, you are clearly desperate to take offence one way or another, and seem determined to prove to yourself that only through direct opposition to me can you find ‘the moral path’. Amira’s use of EoZ was wrong, I do not see what there is to argue about. Where as you tend to think the worst of any action of the ‘right’, you tend to think the best of anyone / any action on the ‘left’. It isn’t surprising, but you should at least own up to the trait, most people follow a similar method. BTW, just two days ago I came across a thread on FB that was actually asking ‘Baruch Goldstein, hero or villian?’. The comments were illuminating and I un-friended all my connections who couldn’t see how even the question itself was vile. Between you and I, given the choice, I’d rather sink with your ship than float with theirs. But I don’t like the right/left definitions anymore, I think they got buried in October 2000, and I won’t fight just for the sake of fighting. So how do we (you and I) move from being antagonistic to actually communicating?

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