Stanford suspends pro-Palestinian lecturer accused of shaming Jewish students in class

Stanford University has suspended an instructor accused of singling out and shaming Jewish students in class by having them stand in the corner to illustrate “what Israel does to the Palestinians.”

Stanford President Richard Saller and Provost Jenny Martinez said the lecturer is “not currently teaching while the university works to ascertain the facts of the situation,” calling the report a “cause for serious concern.”

“We have received a report of a class in which a non-faculty instructor is reported to have addressed the Middle East conflict in a manner that called out individual students in class based on their backgrounds and identities,” they said in a Wednesday statement. “Without prejudging the matter, this report is a cause for serious concern. Academic freedom does not permit the identity-based targeting of students.”

The incident comes with organizations such as Students for Justice in Palestine holding anti-Israel rallies and protests on university campuses nationwide, including Thursday’s “National Day of Resistance.”

The national Students for Justice in Palestine sent out a protest prototype image to campus affiliates that shows a paraglider, an apparent reference to the Hamas terrorists who descended Saturday via motorized paragliders on Israeli concert-goers on the Kibbutz Re’im.

Rabbi Dov Greenberg, director of the Chabad Stanford Jewish Center, told the Forward, a New York-based Jewish publication, that he was told by three students who witnessed the incident that the instructor asked Jewish and Israeli students to identify themselves during the required undergraduate course “Civil, Liberal and Global Education.”

Mr. Greenberg said the teacher then instructed the students to take their belongings and stand in a corner, telling the class: “This is what Israel does to the Palestinians.”

The instructor asked them how many people died in the Holocaust. A student answered “six million,” to which he replied, “Colonizers killed more than six million. Israel is a colonizer.”

A Stanford lecturer has been identified online as the teacher in question, but the university has not confirmed his identity. The Washington Times has reached out to him for comment.

“As this is a personnel matter, we are not in a position to identify anyone involved or comment beyond the message here at this time,” Luisa Rapport, Stanford director of emergency communications and media relations, told The Washington Times.

Mr. Greenberg said the lecturer didn’t mention “anything that happened to the Israelis.” More than 1,300 civilians were killed Saturday when Hamas terrorists launched a surprise attack from the Gaza Strip, prompting Israel to declare war.

“He ignored that,” Mr. Greenberg told the Forward. “He said, ‘Hamas is a legitimate representation of the Palestinian people. They are not a terrorist group. They are freedom fighters. Their actions are legitimate.’”

He said the students were afraid to speak up for fear of offending the instructor and being penalized with bad grades.

“He’s saying Israel is worse than the Nazis and Hamas is innocent. This is what Jewish students face at Stanford and other places,” Mr. Greenberg said. “They’re feeling isolated, under attack and threatened.”

Pro-Palestinian banners and anti-Israel graffiti appeared last weekend on campus, according to the Stanford Daily. The banners were removed.

Student Hamza El Boudali and members of the Stanford SJP defended the attack, saying that “Palestinians, like all peoples, have the legitimate right to resist occupation, apartheid and systemic injustice.”

“Saturday’s events underscore the structural violence, displacement and daily hardships Palestinians have faced for decades under a regime that seeks to undermine their basic human rights and dignity,” the op-ed in the Stanford Daily said.

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