Tel Aviv University
Tel Aviv University – Anat Matar
(Dept of Philosophy) – another Tenured Academic calling for a
boycott of Israel in an international forum
university scholar to advocate Israel boycott
Jonny Paul , THE JERUSALEM POST
Jan. 21, 2010
A Tel Aviv University academic will call
for a boycott of Israel, speaking at a London university event next
month to commemorate "one year since Israel's attack" on Gaza.
Dr. Anat Matar of TAU's Philosophy
Department will be speaking on February 17 at London University's
School for Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) - a campus renowned
for anti-Israel activity.
Matar's talk is to be titled "Supporting
the Boycott on Israel: A View from Within."
She is taking part in a series of events
over the coming weeks organized by the Palestinian societies at five
University of London campuses - University College London, SOAS,
Imperial College, Kings College and Goldsmiths - as well as at the
University of Westminster.
In an article in Haaretz in
August, Matar accused her own university of being complicit with the
"occupation" and questioned Israel's stance on Palestinian academic
freedom and basic education.
A mother of a conscientious objector, on
her profile page on the university's Web site Matar lists her main
nonacademic activities as "movements against military service" and
the "Israeli Committee for Palestinian Prisoners."
Dr. David Hirsh, a sociology lecturer at
University of London's Goldsmiths College and editor of Engage,
a campaign against the academic boycott call against Israel,
strongly criticized such moves, saying they were "delusional" and
"Israeli anti-Zionists boast that their
country carries out the most important and horrific genocides in the
world," he said. "The delusions of grandeur of Israeli anti-Zionists
are as puerile as those of the most naive and proud nationalists.
But it is dangerous to tell Europeans that the Israelis are a unique
evil on the planet, because this lie finds a resonance in the
collective memory and it feels plausible to some contemporary
The series of events is titled, "Gaza:
Our Guernica," in reference to the bombing of a Basque town during
the Spanish Civil War. The 1937 attack caused widespread destruction
and civilian deaths, with 1,650 reportedly killed.
"In April 1937, on a market day, the
Nazis attacked Guernica from the air, first with bombs and then with
incendiaries. Fighter planes followed the bombers to machine-gun
survivors. It was the first time anybody had launched an attack from
the air to kill a civilian population. A third of the population was
killed or seriously injured in an afternoon," Hirsh said.
The series of events opened last Thursday
with a candlelight vigil at University College London, recently in
the headlines after it was discovered that failed Detroit airline
bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was a former president of the
Islamic Society there.
Two other Israelis are taking part in the
series. On Monday, journalist Daphna Baram spoke at SOAS in a talk
titled, "Besieged in Self-Righteousness: Israeli public discourse
after the last invasion of Gaza."
Next Wednesday, Israeli academic Avi
Shlaim, professor of International Relations at Oxford University,
will speak about "Gaza: Past and Present" at Goldsmiths.
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