Eliana is a student who is currently interning at the American Jewish Congress. Below is her perspective on how BDS activism feeds anti-Semitism on campuses.

Columbia’s engagement with the BDS referendum speaks to a higher culture of anti-Semitism on college campuses. Far from providing actual relief to civilians of actual war-torn countries, or from making a stand against countries that legislate countless human rights abuses, the decision to boycott Israel imposes social isolation of Jewish and Zionist students on the Columbia campus. 

The outcome of such social isolation has been catastrophic for Jewish college students, who experience up to an 89% increase of anti-Semitic hate crimes while on campuses that support BDS. 

Ultimately, time and time again, BDS activity devolves into anti-Semitism and Columbia is no exception. Supporters of the referendum chanted “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free”, this is tantamount to calling for the destruction of the state of Israel as a whole. With support for this referendum, it is likely that Jewish and Zionist Columbia students will be subjected to similar cases of harassment going forward.

© 2020 American Jewish Congress.