An event on Friday hosted by the Students for Justice in Palestine chapter at Stanford University featuring the anti-Semitic cartoonist Eli Valley has received some major pushback.
“This is the lead-up to the so-called ‘Anti-Zionism Is Not Anti-Semitism Teach-In’ at Stanford’s Markaz Center, timed for Israel’s Independence Day and coinciding with Ramadan,” said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s associate dean and director of global social action for the leading international Jewish Human Rights NGO, in a statement on Wednesday.
Cooper explained how Valley’s cartoons resemble imagery from the Third Reich.
“The sponsors and backers of this lurid display of Jew hate include Students for Justice in Palestine and the so-called Jewish Voice for Peace have taken a page directly from Nazi Germany’s anti-Semitic genocidal propaganda from the 1930s and ’40s,” said Cooper.
Friday’s event is part of Palestine Awareness Week on campus, coinciding with Israel Week on campus.
In a mass email sent on Sunday to a listserv used by Stanford’s Jewish community, SJP apologized for spreading the illustrations “out of context,” wrote Stanford Law School student Ari Hoffman in The Stanford Daily.
“Let me be as clear as I can: the images are indefensible in any context. They are not justifiable, and they are not explainable,” said Hoffman. “The sin is not against sensitivity. It is one of smearing a Jewish minority under attack here and abroad in the name of a skewed vision of a foreign conflict.”
“SJP’s promise that ‘Eli’s knowledge and guidance’ will ameliorate these facts is akin to entrusting fire safety to an arsonist,” he continued. “To apologize for the flyers but insist on continuing with the event is equal parts absurd and appalling.”
The incident occurred a week after the international edition of The New York Times published anti-Semitic cartoons on April 25 and over the following weekend.