The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has expressed concern over the increasing use of undemocratic, bullying, confrontational tactics intended to silence Israeli officials and the expression of pro-Israel views on campus.
“America’s college campuses are the cradle of our democracy, where the marketplace of ideas thrives and young people – often for the first time – are exposed to new and different ideas,” said ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman in a statement issued Tuesday. “Unfortunately, anti-Israel activists on our campuses are increasingly resorting to undemocratic, bullying, confrontational tactics in order to silence Israeli officials and the expression of pro-Israel views. Such mean-spirited efforts to stifle speech have no place in an academic environment where speakers need to be free to express their ideas – and interested audiences have a right to hear those ideas – without fear or intimidation.”
In the latest incident, 11 people were arrested on Monday as Ambassador to the US Michael Oren was repeatedly interrupted while trying to deliver an address at the University of California, Irvine.
“While students and community members certainly have the right to engage in peaceable protest, the tactics employed by anti-Israel activists have significantly disrupted the speakers and prevented the free flow of information and ideas that are so critical in a democracy,” said Foxman.