Tuesday’s decision to upgrade the status of the Ariel college to that of a
university did not evoke international condemnation on Wednesday, even though
some warned of a wave of protests because the school is located in a
One Foreign Ministry official said that no governmental
condemnation was registered in any of the major capitals around the world about
One reason given for the silence – despite the fact that
condemnations are routinely issued in various capitals where there is any
announcement of building or plans to build beyond the Green Line – is that while
the status of the Ariel University Center might change, nothing is changing on
According to this reasoning, were the school to announce
plans to build a number of new dormitories to absorb an influx of new students,
then the world reaction would be different.
Instead, this is largely seen
abroad as an internal Israeli matter, though one with obvious symbolism, as it’s
the first such institution over the Green Line.
One senior US official,
when asked about the matter, said he did not know how to respond, because he was
not sure of the decision’s real significance.
The Council for Higher
Education in Judea and Samaria voted Tuesday to grant full university status to