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University of Michigan Cancels Anti-Israel Resolution Vote After ‘Inappropriate Use’ of School Email System

Pro-Palestinian protesters at the University of Michigan. Photo: Screenshot

The University of Michigan announced on Thursday that it halted a campus-wide vote on an anti-Israel resolution accusing the Jewish state of “genocide” and “apartheid.”

In a note to the campus community, the university said the decision followed an unauthorized communication sent to the entire undergraduate student body at the request of a graduate student in what the school described as an “inappropriate use” of the university’s email system.

Another resolution, which condemned Hamas as well as bigotry targeting both Jews and Muslims, was also canceled. The student body on Wednesday was considering and began voting on both resolutions when the email was sent. The message, which the university described as a “significant violation” of its rules, called on students to support the anti-Israel resolution and to vote against the other measure.

“That communication irreparably tainted the voting process on the two resolutions,” university vice president and general counsel Timothy G. Lynch wrote in a statement obtained by The Algemeiner. “We do not know, and never will know, the voting results on these two resolutions. But, under the circumstances, the university has been left with no alternative but to cancel the portion of the election process for these two resolutions.”

Lynch noted that the Central Student Government (CSG), which was overseeing the voting, “declined to address this threat to the integrity of the election results” when the university immediately brought it to the attention of the body.

“We take this action with deep reluctance,” he added. “But the extraordinary, unprecedented interference with the CSG ballot process requires the significant action we take today.”

In addition to accusing Israel of genocide and apartheid, one of the resolutions — titled Assembly Resolution 13-025: University Accountability in the Face of Genocide — demanded that the university establish a committee for investigating its “investments in any apartheid regime in the world.” It also said that the university failed to acknowledge the deaths of Palestinians in a statement addressing Hamas’ massacre across southern Israel on Oct. 7.

The other resolution — titled Assembly Resolution 13-026: CSG Response to Atrocities in the Middle East — aimed at addressing “opportunities to bridge students together in this time of increased division and tension.”

The false claims of Israeli genocide and apartheid are typical of the misinformation that has been spread by anti-Israel voices about the ongoing war between the Jewish state and the Hamas terror group, according to Jacob Baime, CEO of the Israel on Campus Coalition.

“While criticism of Israeli policies can be valid, the claims that Israel is committing genocide or apartheid are patently false. Reasonable people can disagree on complex geopolitical issues, but we must reject efforts that single out or delegitimize one side,” Baime told The Algemeiner. “The campus climate at Michigan and on campuses nationwide continues to be deeply concerning. However, the university’s stand against this inflammatory referendum is a step in the right direction. I hope it marks the start of a return to nuance and fact-based discussion regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), commended the University of Michigan’s decision.

The school “made the right decision to cancel the student vote today,” he wrote on X/Twitter. “Students violated University of Michigan policies, and the university must conduct a thorough investigation. From the beginning, this effort pitted students against one another and intensified hate at a time when Jewish students on campus were already vulnerable. The University of Michigan must now focus on bringing the community together.”

The University of Michigan has long been a hub of anti-Israel activity. In January, anti-Israel student protesters there chanted, “Kamala, Kamala, you can’t hide, you’re committing genocide,” during Vice President Kamala Harris’ visit to campus, where she was scheduled to discuss climate change. They also chanted, “There is only one solution: Intifada revolution” while waving Palestinian flags. A student who appeared to be leading the demonstration condemned the Biden administration for approving aid to Israel, which she referred to as “the Zionist entity.”

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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Treasure Trove: Remembering Yoni Netanyahu, a heroic soldier and leader

Jonathan (Yoni) Netanyahu was the older brother of Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister. He was the commander of the Entebbe Operation on July 4, 1976 when Israel rescued 102 hostages who had been on a flight hijacked by Palestinian and German terrorists and ordered to land in Entebbe, Uganda. Yoni was the only Israeli soldier killed in […]

The post Treasure Trove: Remembering Yoni Netanyahu, a heroic soldier and leader appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Pope Condemns Anti-Judaism, Antisemitism Amid New Wave of Attacks Against Jews

Pope Francis waves after delivering his traditional Christmas Day Urbi et Orbi speech to the city and the world from the main balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, December 25, 2021. Photo: REUTERS/Yara Nardi

Pope Francis condemned all forms of anti-Judaism and antisemitism, labeling them as a “sin against God,” after noticing an increase in attacks against Jews around the world.

“(The Church) rejects every form of anti-Judaism and antisemitism, unequivocally condemning manifestations of hatred towards Jews and Judaism as a sin against God,” the pontiff wrote in a letter to the Jewish population of Israel dated Feb. 2 and made public on Saturday.

“Together with you, we, Catholics, are very concerned about the terrible increase in attacks against Jews around the world. We had hoped that ‘never again’ would be a refrain heard by the new generations,” he added.

The Pope noted that wars and divisions are increasing all over the world “in a sort of piecemeal world war,” hitting the lives of many populations.

Francis, 87, has condemned Hamas’ Oct. 7 cross-border attack from Gaza into southern Israel. He has also said on several occasions that a two-state solution was needed to put an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In his letter, the pope also called, once again, for the release of those hostages still being held by militants.

He said his heart was torn at the sight of the conflict in the Holy Land and the division and hatred stemming from it, adding that the world was looking at the unfolding of events in the area with “apprehension and pain.”

He assured the Jewish community of his closeness and affection, “particularly (those) consumed by anguish, pain, fear and even anger,” repeating his call for the end of the war.

Francis said he prayed for peace. “My heart is close to you, to the Holy Land, to all the peoples who inhabit it, Israelis and Palestinians, and I pray that the desire for peace may prevail in all.”

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Israel Says It Has Struck More than 50 Hezbollah Targets in Syria Since Oct 7

Israeli soldiers take part in training session near the Israel border with Syria at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, February 1, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Gil Eliyahu/File Photo

The Israeli military said on Saturday that since the outbreak of the Gaza war on Oct. 7 it had struck more than 50 targets in Syria linked to the Iranian-backed Lebanese terror group Hezbollah.

The remarks, in a briefing by chief military spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari that mainly discussed efforts to beat back Hezbollah attacks launched in solidarity with Hamas, were a departure from Israel’s usual reticence about Syria operations.

“Everywhere Hezbollah is, we shall be. We will take action everywhere required in the Middle East,” Hagari said.

Israeli forces have attacked 34,000 Hezbollah targets in Lebanon, including 120 border surveillance outposts, 40 caches of missiles and other weaponry and more than 40 command centers, Hagari said. He put the number of enemy dead at more than 200.

Hagari said Israel had deployed three army divisions along its side of the Lebanese border in anticipation of Hezbollah getting involved after Palestinian Hamas launched a shock cross-border attack on Oct. 7, triggering the war in the Gaza Strip.

With tens of thousands of its northern residents having evacuated, Israel has threatened to escalate the Lebanon fighting unless Hezbollah backs off from the border – and has sought Western help in finding a diplomatic solution in Beirut.

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