Swarthmore Jewish students break with Hillel, welcome views critical of Israel’s Palestine policies

Palestinian protester detained by IDF soldiers. Photo: AFP - Jaafar Ashtiyeh

Palestinian protester detained by IDF soldiers. Photo: AFP – Jaafar Ashtiyeh

From The Inquirer‘s Kathy Bocella – Jewish students at Swarthmore College have become the first in the nation to break with the global student association Hillel and agree to open their doors to groups and speakers who do not support Israel.

The Swarthmore student board unanimously voted to renounce Hillel International’s restrictions, which bar chapters from sponsoring events, hosting speakers, or partnering with groups that oppose Israel’s right to exist or support a movement for universities to end investments in Israel because of its policies toward the Palestinians.

We felt like we needed to stand up for what we believe and the values we’ve always held,’ said Joshua Wolfsun, a board member of the 100-student group.

Wolfsun said the entire board supported the resolution, though only seven of the 13 members were present for the vote Sunday.

The issue of whether Jewish student groups on U.S. campuses should be engaged with groups and speakers critical of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians has been building since 2010, when Hillel International issued its new policy.

Full article here.

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