June 11, 2021
Contact: Avi D. Gordon, Executive Director Alums for Campus Fairness
917-512-4585, [email protected]
Since the onset of the conflict in Gaza, we have witnessed an egregious spike in antisemitic activity on college campuses across the nation. Recently ACF-CUNY learned that students attending a required zoom lecture were “Zoombombed” with antisemitic tropes and rhetoric demonizing Israel.
The Anti-Defamation League characterizes “Zoombombing” as a reference to the popular video conferencing platform Zoom where virtual meetings are disrupted by graphic or threatening messages or actions. This often includes those that contain hate speech or pornographic content.
On this May 20 incident, unsuspecting students, including many who are Jewish, were subjected to a premeditated Pro-Palestinian zoombomb when their lecture was hijacked and overrun. Essentially, individuals hijacked a video lecture in an effort to use the platform as a medium to spew hate and antisemitic rhetoric among unsuspecting participants (victims) of the video call. Victims described being horrified and sick to their stomachs experiencing this form of cyber attack. One student recounted the incident as the “most antisemitic [incident] I’ve ever seen with my own eyes.” Nearly 200 participants of the organized intervention changed their screen backgrounds to Palestinian flags while others took turns reading out a manifesto and the chat flooded with hateful comments- one of which accused Israel of using the Holocaust as a “tool”.
Every campus must remain a marketplace of ideas in which diverse viewpoints are shared everyday. Jewish students and Pro-Israel students, and their many allies, are supported by ACF-CUNY and we are committed to combating antisemitism, including its proliferation through Zoombombing.
We ask the Hunter College and CUNY communities to stand united with us in combating antisemitism in all its forms, including through Zoombombing.
About ACF: Alums for Campus Fairness (ACF) is America’s unified alumni voice on issues of antisemitism, demonization of Israel, and bigotry. With over thirty-five chapters, ACF positions thousands of alumni on the front lines of key issues at their alma maters and works to ensure that universities remain pillars of open dialogue and equal opportunity for all students. For more information, please visit www.campusfairness.org.