Rather unsurprisingly, social media has put a richly deserved whupping on Israel’s already tattered global reputation in the face of its current rage-gasm against illegally occupied Gaza. Tweeted pictures and stories from Gazans themselves managed to leap over the high wall of the establishment media and shock the consciousness of, get this, even some Americans.
Naturally, this hasn’t gone over too well with either Netanyahu or the well-oiled propaganda machine we call the Israel lobby, which has responded with the usual smear campaigns against celebrities, journalists, and anyone else who would dare to question the despicable behavior of the IDF and its increasingly unhinged supporters.
Reporters have been fired or reassigned, celebrities have deleted tweets, and mainstream media have changed headlines, all to assuage the tender feelings of the Zionist carpet bombers and eliminationists. “Liberal” California Senator Barbara Boxer even resorted to filibustering a Tampa teen brutally assaulted by Israeli police when he attempted to tell his story before C-Span cameras.
But now, the desperation that would be familiar to any cornered rat has led the Zionist thought police to go after academia, as thought police do.
A well-regarded professor of indigenous studies formerly at Virginia Tech, Steven Salaita, was preparing to join the faculty at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, having been offered a tenured position to teach there, and then, evidently noticing his rather brownish hue, some Judeofascist started pawing through his twitter feed, which contained many impassioned denunciations of the ongoing massacre. Something ensued, but it was the opposite of hilarity.
The cowardly administrators at UI, for obscure, ever-changing reasons that utterly strain credulity, decided to un-hire him. Yep, after he’d resigned from Virginia Tech and was merely awaiting pro forma approval from the Trustees. Oh, they’re not against academic freedom or anything, they were concerned about civility, or something. On fucking TWITTER! Later, concern for the dainty sensibilities of Jewish students (who today are less pro-Israel than ever), was tossed against the wall to see if that would stick.
Let me tell you something: it won’t. As anyone smart enough to get into college in the first place will tell you, college professors aren’t there to protect students from understanding the world as it is, and Israel is a racist global pariah that is slowly collapsing under the weight of its own contradictions. Any professor, particularly one teaching Indigenous Studies, for Pete’s sake, would be doing his students a disservice to gloss over this fact because “civility,” or anything else.
A change.org petition demanding Salaita’s reinstatement has gathered over 60,000 as of this afternoon, spurred in part by the tireless efforts of Corey Robin and many others; I signed it, and you should, too.
College activism brought down Apartheid in South Africa, and it will, eventually, bring down Apartheid in Israel, too. The Israel Lobby recognizes this, and that’s why Salaita had to go.
Please sign the petition.
Photo by United Nations under Creative Commons license