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Ashamed

November 29, 2009

Yes, it’s Thanksgiving and I have nothing better to do than write a blog for the HRC. May this holiday bring all of you peace, health and happiness.

This blog is about the events that transpired on Monday November 23, 2009, the fateful day the Israeli ambassador to the United States visited Harvard.

First off, I’d like to say that there is nothing that brightens my day more than a Palestinian flag shoved in my face to the cries of “murderer” “war criminal” and “death to Israel” while entering the Kennedy school.  It really just elevates my spirit and makes me feel  warm and fuzzy inside. I thank the Harvard Police Force for making sure I was safe and escorting me in.

The speaker, Michael Oren, is a former Harvard professor and a distinguished historian. His talk was no diatribe against the Palestinians and neither was it a slapdash jumble of slogans. Of course, he was pro-Israel and spoke on controversial topics, but the response he received was completely unacceptable.

If you don’t share his opinions, I can deal. We can debate, and maybe I will change your mind.  However, if you spew unsubstantiated anti-Semitic nonsense while insulting the speaker and screaming at him, accuse Oren of cheapening the memory of the 6 million Jews who died in the Holocaust, or make crude jokes about the deaths of children, Palestinian or Israeli, I’m just ashamed. I’m ashamed to attend the same university as you, to use the same classrooms as you, and even to have the same degree as you. I’m ashamed it got so rowdy that I had to exit the premises out the back door with police present, and that some people left the lecture midway and stood outside screaming “Long Live Palestine” and “Death to Israel” among other creative slogans.

I expect this from random protesters. I didn’t, however, expect this from my classmates. Yes, I’m conservative and pro-Israel, but I don’t go around carrying such hate and malice, and I hope I don’t bring shame onto this university.  I will never stoop so low as to scream the converse of these slogans and to so blatantly disrespect a speaker.

I don’t like that people have started telling me to stop wearing my Star of David, and I don’t like that anti-Israel sentiment has now become blatant anti-Semitism. I know what it is like to defend myself both with my words and with my fists, but I don’t want to have to do it at Harvard.

I thank the people who attended this lecture and clapped with me when Oren sarcastically responded to a few insolent comments, you made me feel less alone and more like not everyone had turned against what I believed in.

~israelianna~

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. Yuri permalink
    December 7, 2009 2:59 am

    Great!!!

  2. azbel permalink
    December 7, 2009 1:53 pm

    “Those who do not learn from the past [Hitler, Holocaust, Stalin, Gulag, 9/11,…] are conemned to repeat it [in the worse form]”.
    How many of Harvard students can at least name (not to understaand and appreciate) the author of these words and the Harvard and American reaction reaction to them?
    The answer is in the follow-up comments.

  3. evidence-user permalink
    December 15, 2009 2:02 pm

    “Recognizing the murder of six million Jews more than six decades ago is, in fact, vital for understanding the supreme dangers posed to six million Jews in Israel today by a nuclear Iran and by the Goldstone Report.” -Michael Oren, comparing the Goldstone report to the Holocaust: http://www.tnr.com/article/world/deep-denial. Seems like a cheapshot to me.

  4. JoB permalink
    December 15, 2009 10:10 pm

    right on!!!
    The method of persuading others of a particular point of view begins at polite lectures with an interesting and multifaceted exchange of opinions during Q&A. It ended when Harvard students forgot that they were A. From Harvard. B. Students. and C. Human.

  5. Israelianna permalink
    December 17, 2009 6:00 pm

    I encourage people to read the rest of the article you posted and not randomly stick quotes out of context. I don’t think by that statement Oren cheapens the Holocaust, nor by his article (which makes valid points), and I find the allegation of a Jew (whose family probably was affected by the Holocaust) “cheapening” the Holocaust to be beyond ridiculous.

  6. Kansan permalink
    January 3, 2010 1:26 am

    OK I know Easterners are fond of sneering at those of us who live amidst the amber waves of grain: we are SO unsophisticated, so uncultured, etc. HOWEVER: a scene like the one described would never have happened here in a university in Wichita, Kansas. Not that we don’t have crazy people in Kansas; we do. But our crazy, rude, and mannerless people are not our Intellectual Elite!

    Why do modern leftists think themselves more persuasive if they adopt the strategies of the likes of Limbaugh?

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