Isracampus Exclusive: Globes Newspaper exposed Dr.
Gideon Aran's escapades three years ago; Hebrew University Officials
might be involved in conspiracy to conceal wrong-doings on campus
The sex scandal involving Dr. Gideon Aran, a
sociologist at the Hebrew University, was in fact first broken to
the world by the Israeli business daily newspaper Globes on June 13,
2008, but without Aran's name. Aran is referred to there only as
"'A' from the Department of Sociology." Those familiar with the
department would have assumed that the A was referring to Hebrew
University sociologist Eyal/Ayal (like Aran, spelled with a Hebrew
Alef) Ben-Ari, whose name was already in the press with regard to
alleged sexual harassment of his students. The Globes article later
mentions that there were indeed two Professors named "A" or "ALEF"
who were involved in sexually harassing female sociology students at
the Hebrew University.
The Globes article quotes at length "Ortal, a
graduate student. We know now that the Ortal in question was Ortal
Ben-Dayan, who went public this week in her accusations against Aran.
The newspaper mentions the 1998 Knesset law in Israel that bans
sexual activity between a person with a second person who works for
or is subject to the power and control of the first person due to
their jobs or professional positions. The newspaper cites "A" as
having violated this law. The "Professor 'A'" referred to in the
article is Dr. Gideon Aran. (He is not a professor.)
Hebrew readers can read the Globes article in
its original here:
The article emphasizes the long track record of
"A" in making racist and bigoted comments to Ortal as part of his
"courtship" of her. Globes cites the student as saying: "'A' once
told me that it turns him on that I am a (dark-skinned) Moroccan
Jew, adding that if I were Ethiopian it would be perfect." She
added: "'A' liked to sprinkle his conversations with racist
comments, both because he actually believed in them and also because
it turned him on to see me get angry. One time he told me that the
academic level of Israeli universities was being harmed because too
many Mizrachi/Sephardic Jews were entering as students. When I
responded with anger, I saw that it turned him on, and not only in a
The student goes on to describe how other
faculty members in sociology at the Hebrew University were sexually
prowling, and especially were hunting for "inter-ethnic" romances
with Sephardic women. At one point 'A' said that anyone named Ortal,
a common but not exclusively Sephardic name, would be cut out only
to sell things in a convenience store. She reports that "Professor
'A'" would prance about the department and brag to all his friends
there that he had had a sexual affair with a Moroccan Jewish
student, which he presented as evidence of his support for
The article then tells of other students
complaining about being sexually harassed by sociology professors at
the Hebrew University. One student cited is the daughter of the
president of the Technion, who studied sociology at the Hebrew
University at the time.
Ortal attempted to inform other students of
being harassed by "A". The other students were so intimated by the
predatory professors of sociology that they were afraid to be seen
in her company or in the same classroom with her.
In any case, we now know that the offending
faculty member was indeed Gideon Aran. We also know from the Globes
article that the entire story and the behavior of Aran were
well-known to the Hebrew University authorities and faculty at least
as far back as June 2008. And they did nothing at all about it. They
swept the entire affair under the carpet until Haaretz decided to
break it and name names this week!
It remains to be seen whether Aran will be
indicted under Israel's anti-racism law, a law that until now has
only been used to harass Rabbis and "right- wingers."