Israel on college campuses

Who’s Behind the Israel Activism on College Campuses?

Arguments over Israel on college campuses are not new. Every few months, stories of antisemitism and anti-Zionism at American colleges appear in Jewish and non-Jewish publications alike. From Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) resolutions to students claiming they were ostracized for their Zionist ideologies, college campuses are a focal point for the conversation about Zionism in America. Often these national stories focus on events, but skip over the students that are involved—and they have plenty to say. Moment spoke with three student activists across the political spectrum to highlight how a new generation of Jewish Americans feel about the current state of Israel.  Alida Jacobs founded Jewish Voices for Peace (JVP) at the University of California, Davis. This past year, they worked to pass a BDS resolution for their school divesting from Raytheon, Viola Environments and...

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Beshert | Finding My Tribe

I was raised in Downers Grove, Illinois—the kind of place with so few Jews that when someone found out I was Jewish, they’d always ask, “But you still celebrate Christmas, right?” No, we didn’t celebrate Christmas, but we weren’t super-observant either. We belonged to the only Reform temple in Chicago’s western suburbs in the early 70s. We celebrated the “big” holidays and loved Jewish food, but things like observing the Sabbath, keeping kosher, and studying Torah… not so much. I had green eyes. I was fair. I looked Irish. And yet, as my mother said, Jewish is Jewish, and if Hitler showed up in DuPage County, bacon in the fridge and almost blond hair wouldn’t fool him. When it was time for college, I applied, as did five hundred other kids in my high school class,...

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New Voices goes Inside Chabad

Chabad, the ubiquitous Jewish movement best known among American Jews for its outreach on college campuses, is in many ways a mystery. Why, unlike most ultra-Orthodox, do the Lubavitch reach out to rather than reject secular Jews? What do they get when you put on t'fillin? Are they Zionist or anti-Zionist? What do they think of mainstream Jewish movements and what do those movements think of them? Do all Lubavitchers even share the same views on these issues? A new issue of New Voices, the national Jewish student magazine, addresses these questions, exploring the less known—and often troubling—aspects of Chabad. "As one JTA staffer noted," writes Ben Harris of the JTA, "it’s pretty 'ballsy' of NV to take on Lubavitch, though takedown is probably a more accurate description." Takedown or not, New Voices has done what no...

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