Europe Israel News


A Firsthand Account of Anti-Israel Violence at a UK University

A Firsthand Account of Anti-Israel Violence at a UK University

Campus security officers barricaded the doors. The mob swarmed in on us. We were caged  in a room at University College London (UCL). Crowds of scowling faces were pressed against the window, pointing, jeering, roaring hateful words — their cameras flashing all around us. It was like we were in a zoo. Ironically, this time, the animals were on the outside.

We sat in a circle, facing each other — in shock, speechless — and awaiting what would happen next.

We were trapped. Each window and door that surrounded us was blocked by a separate mob of violent protestors, chanting, banging and pushing.

What is one supposed to do in such a situation?

The rational thought in times of danger is to escape and run away. This time, however, the danger was on the outside, and safety was the circle we were sitting in.

Our time? We had come to hear Israeli speaker Hen Mazzig, who had been brought to UCL by CAMERA on Campus with approval from the student union.

It was clear that UCL’s violent mob was determined to shut down the event, and deny us our rights to assemble and speak. But we didn’t back down. This was more than just another University talk. It was about civil rights — our civil rights.

Security officials changed the location of the event — twice.

The protesters couldn’t be controlled in the previous rooms. And to make sure that the final room would not be flooded by the mob, we dispersed into groups around the university and then entered this new room separately, at different times, diverting attention away from us.

But this still was not enough.

Numerous students were harassed, shoved, slandered — all for simply attempting to attend a talk by a speaker approved and arranged through UCL’s student union.

No student should be concerned about safety at his or her university, let alone in a democracy. But at UCL, the walls of our “safe space” came crashing down.

As Mazzig prepared to speak, protesters rammed the window open and dived into our room, hitting two girls. After 10 minutes, these hijackers were escorted out; it was now time for him to speak.

In our solidarity circle, we gave him our full attention as he talked about his background and connection to Israel. And when he finished, we realized that our goal had been accomplished: we hadn’t let intolerance and hate deprive us of our rights.

Still shaken up by the events, we tightened our circle and began singing Hatikvah, the Israeli national anthem. Our tears soon turned to smiles.

Yes, we were outnumbered, and hatred swirled around us. But there was an almost transcendent spirit of strength that seemed to penetrate us.

After the event was over, a policeman warned us that exiting wouldn’t be easy. The crowds were still thick and angry.

Security cleared a path through the mob for us to leave. Abuse hailed down on us. Insults and curses were hurled. But, as we walked hand-in-hand through the hateful crowd, our fear had somehow dissipated. We walked straight out of the event, in a civil manner, without causing any commotion or disruption. We were the antithesis of the violent mob.

It turns out that the psalmist was correct: it’s possible to walk through a dark valley and yet feel no fear.

The author is a Fellow with CAMERA, and a student at Kings College London.

Source: The Algemeiner

One of the pioneers of the Israeli Internet, Zvi was already established as the voice of Israeli internet among international users as early as 1991, which resulted in the Israeli government asking him to lead the famous Jerusalem One project, the very first Israeli Internet network. Zvi Lando was the designer/builder of the first web sites for the Prime Minister's office, the Foreign Ministry, and worked for 13 years with the Jewish Agency, building dozens of projects, including, in 1996, Emet - the first Hebrew web site in history.

Avertissement de modération: Nous vous rappelons que vos commentaires sont soumis à notre charte et qu'il n'est pas permis de tenir de propos violents, discriminatoires ou diffamatoires. Tous les commentaires contraires à cette charte seront retirés et leurs auteurs risquent de voir leur compte clos. Merci d'avance pour votre compréhension.

Signalez un commentaire abusif en cliquant ici

Merci de nous signaler les commentaires qui vous semblent abusifs et qui contiendraient des propos:
  • * Antisémites
  • * Racistes
  • * Homophobes
  • * Injurieux
  • * Grossiers
  • * Diffamatoires envers une personne physique ou morale

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • LinkedIn
    • More Networks
    Copy link
    Powered by Social Snap