Despite protests, Sarsour speaks at JVP event

Sarsour: So obviously I’m the biggest problem for the Jewish community, I’m the existential threat.

November 30, 2017 03:08
2 minute read.
Linda Sarsour nabra hassanen muslim activist new york city

Activist Linda Sarsour addresses attendees at a vigil for Nabra Hassanen, a 17 year old teenage Muslim girl killed by a bat-wielding motorist near a Virginia mosque, Manhattan, New York, U.S., June 20, 2017.. (photo credit: REUTERS/AMR ALFIKY)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


NEW YORK – Eventually, much of the panel held in New York did not focus on its theme, “antisemitism and the struggle for justice,” but on the panelists and on the organizations behind them.

It especially focused on the speaker at the right end of the table, Palestinian feminist activist Linda Sarsour, whose very invitation to the event sparked a wave of protests against the host institution, the New School University in Manhattan.

Despite objection from the ADL and other Jewish organizations and despite a small protest outside on the street, the university, in partnership with the farleft organization Jewish Voice for Peace and other organizations, hosted the event featuring Sarsour Tuesday night.

In the shadow of the scandal that accompanied her invitation to the panel, Sarsour went on stage signaling “V” as a sign of victory. Although there were three other speakers and a host on the stage, it was clear that she was the keynote speaker. Except for one or two interruptions by critics, the audience was hers. When her speech was interrupted, it was for applause and cheers. Linda Sarsour at the Jewish Voice for Peace event, Nov. 29, 2017. (Facebook/Jacobin Magazine)

“So obviously I’m the biggest problem for the Jewish community, I’m the existential threat,” said Sarsour. “And I’m confused by people who actually do not know who I am, have never sat on a table with me and for sure have never been anywhere near a social justice movement in the United States of America.”

The evening was opened by a brief statement by William Milberg, the Dean and Professor of economics at New School. He mentioned the “strong criticism feedback from many individuals regarding tonight’s event,” and said, “We take the directness of this feedback and the convictions and values they express very seriously, and we look forward to engaging other perspectives in the months ahead. Hosting tonight’s event is in the spirit of free expression”.

Sarsour’s response to the criticism was given in her own words, minutes later.

“I’m not looking for any approval from Zionists, right-wing Zionists, from Jewish Americans, from non-Jewish – I don’t need anybody to invite me to the movement to dismantle anti-Semitism. I come here because I believe it, and it’s the right thing to do for all of us.”

Earlier this month, Jonathan Greenblatt, National Director and CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, slammed the New School for hosting the event. He tweeted, “Having Linda Sarsour & head of JVP leading a panel on #antisemitism is like Oscar Meyer leading a panel on vegetarianism. These panelists know the issue, but unfortunately, from the perspective of fomenting it rather than fighting it.”

The New School responded by inviting Greenblatt to a second panel on antisemitism, but he declined.

At yesterday’s event, Jewish Voice for Peace Executive Director Rebecca Vilkomerson, another member of the panel, attacked Greenblatt for comparing, JVP to the alt-right movement in the past.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

PEOPLE GAZE at the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris
April 19, 2019
Notre Dame will be rebuilt – but most European Jewish sites never will be