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Columbia Campus Rabbi Urges Jewish Students to Leave for Their Own Safety | The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com | Hana Levi Julian | 14 Nisan 5784 – Sunday, April 21, 2024

Photo credit: UK Department for International Development

Nemat Minouche Shafik, 2009

A rabbi on the Columbia University campus is urging Jewish students to return to their homes and not return for their safety.

Rabbi Elie Buechler sent a text message to more than 290 students via WhatsApp on Sunday morning, calling on them to leave “as soon as possible” and to stay home for the time being.

“The events of the past few days, especially last night, have made it clear that Columbia University Public Safety and the NYPD cannot guarantee the safety of Jewish students in the face of extreme anti-Semitism and anarchy,” the rabbi wrote in the text.

“It pains me to say that I would strongly advise you to return home as soon as possible and to stay at home until the reality on and around campus has improved dramatically,” he wrote.

The warning followed nights of vicious — possibly even deadly — anti-Israel protests on the New York City campus by agitators dressed as Hamas terrorists, with kefiyyahs masking their faces and hair and shouting for the murder of Jews.

One protester held up a sign, pointing at students waving Israeli and American flags, and said, “Al Qasam’s next targets.”

More than 100 of the anti-Semitic protesters were arrested by the NYPD after days of “solidarity with Gaza” protests led to a two-day pro-Palestinian sit-in that began last Wednesday and included tents where protesters could camp around the clock continue. .

On that Wednesday, Columbia University President Nemat Minouche Shafik was not on campus: She was testifying before a congressional committee hearing about the rampant anti-Semitism plaguing her school.

Shafik authorized the arrests after all attempts to talk to the haters failed.

“I regret that all these attempts to resolve the situation have been rejected by the students involved. As a result, NYPD officers are now on campus and the process of clearing the camp is underway,” she said.

Among the protesters who were also suspended from Columbia and Barnard College in response to their hateful threats was Isra Hirsi, the daughter of anti-Semitic U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN).

“It is not our job as Jews to ensure our own safety on campus,” the rabbi wrote in his sad message to the Yavne group.

“No one should have to put up with this level of hate, let alone at school.”