There is a lot of huffing and puffing – and increasing frustration – that they are unable to shift the SOAS administration or Colin Shindler. This has manifested itself in a plethora of highly aggressive and vituperous emails from some academics and union members at SOAS sent to Colin and other people involved.
A number of members of staff at SOAS have been very positive about the Department of Israel Studies’ firm stand and insistence that the lecture series to commemorate 100 years of the city of Tel Aviv should go ahead.
The UCU, led by Graham Dyer, has attempted one calumny after another in order to provoke a response and to escalate the situation.
The SOAS Israel Society held a very successful and civilised meeting on Tuesday at which Colin Shindler and Emanuele Ottolenghi spoke to a packed audience.
Graham Dyer’s comment about the Gaza tragedy as a ‘holocaust’ appears publicly in this Jerusalem Post piece. In addition, he has compared Gaza to the Warsaw ghetto in other emails – implied in this piece but not stated.
As an academic he should be asked to explain this by colleagues.
This is the first time that there is a serious campaign for the rhetoric of an “academic boycott of Israel” to be put into practice.
The UCU branch at SOAS is:
- employing antisemitic propaganda such as the constant insistence that the current situation in Gaza is like the Holocaust
- campaigning to silence Israeli academics who have been invited to SOAS
- picketing lectures given by Israelis
- focusing their aggression and vituperation against a Jewish member of staff who is not Israeli