Three Jewish students were subjected to vile anti-Semitic abuse by members of a Cambridge University drinking society amid allegations of a cover up.
One of the victims has accused university authorities of failing to investigate the attack properly. Two members of Christ’s College have been disciplined for their part in the assault although they were cleared of anti-Semitism.
Christ’s College has declined to identify the perpetrators or reveal the punishment – if any – meted out to the drinking society members.
The students were set upon by a mob after they entered the graduate union building in Mill Lane, Cambridge, at the end of last month.
The bar area had been rented out for a party jointly held by the sporting societies of Christ’s College. One of the victims, Shlomo Roiter-Jesner, 25, who is studying politics at Hughes Hall, told The Telegraph: “It was a closed party so we walked out but as we did so these individuals started getting more physical and more vocal and they noticed our kippot [Jewish skullcaps].
“All of a sudden they were shouting: ‘Jew, get f—— out of here’. We tried to leave but they were yelling at us.”
In an email to Professor Jane Stapleton, master of Christ’s College, sent a day after the attacks, another of the Jewish students, who does not wish to be named, wrote: “We heard shouting and were literally grabbed and pulled out of the building by about seven large, intimidating males.
“We, and other bystanders, heard a number of vicious anti-Semitic slurs including ‘f—— Jew, you don’t belong here’, ‘dirty Jew’ and to myself, ‘f— off, darkie’.
“They then proceeded to try and choke my friend with his scarf, leaving him gasping for oxygen, and to push me and the third friend around, despite our attempts to de-escalate the situation. They eventually went back in after threatening to ‘smash our faces in’.”
Prof Stapleton wrote in response that the trio had every right to take the matter to police but if they chose not to do so the college would order an immediate inquiry.
“I assure you that Christ’s would regard any conduct of the type that you report as wholly unacceptable, deplorable and worthy of appropriate disciplinary action,” she wrote on October 31. The college obtained CCTV footage of the attack but it contained no audio recording.
Then on November 18, Mr Roiter-Jesner received a perfunctory response from Prof Stapleton. “The internal disciplinary process of the tutors is now concluded and two students have been disciplined. Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention,” she wrote.
The reply has dismayed the students, who now feel that the anti-Semitic attack has gone unrecognised. “The college has not confronted the issue at all,” said Mr Roiter-Jesner, “They have brushed it under the carpet.”
Prof Stapleton told the The Telegraph: “The internal investigation did succeed in identifying two Christ’s students who admitted using foul language and participating in a scuffle but they denied initiating the physical hostility and denied using any anti-Semitic or racist language. In relation to the former they were disciplined.”
She added: “I reject categorically that Christ’s has engaged in a cover-up on this matter.”