SAUJS urged all of its members to send the following letter to Wits University, in an effort to encourage the University management to take decisive action.
I strongly believe that you should SAY NO TO SUPPORTING TERRORISM ON CAMPUS.
The Wits Palestinian Solidarity Committee (PSC) have proved to the public, that they are not interested in dialogue or conversation, but rather in disregarding the shared agreements and terms they had made with SAUJS (South African Union of Jewish Students) and the University. They have proved to the University that they are dishonest and deceitful. They have clearly chosen to align themselves with radical extremist terrorist groups like Hezbollah, showing that the true intentions of their Israel Apartheid Week campaign are hateful and violent.
Are the PSC allowed to break agreements, destroy SAUJS property and vandalize Wits University?
The PSC have shown no regard for the negotiated agreements that were reached on Monday evening with the Dean of Students and SAUJS. They have shown no respect to the University, and continue to force themselves onto the SAUJS allocated space on the Piazza in an attempt to provoke SAUJS students. The PSC have tried to shut SAUJS down first by ripping their posters to pieces, then by cutting their power cord in half, and then by cutting down their banner. The PSC have also now plastered the University walls with illegal graffiti, trying to draw on support from more radicals.
How, in good conscience, can the University allow the flag of Hezbollah to be flown on campus? Hezbollah is an internationally recognized terrorist organization, and there can be nothing peaceful about advocating for terrorism, inciting violence, and promoting murder. It is outrageous to see that Wits University gives radical extremists the platform to wave this flag.
Does Wits University allow incitement to violence on its campus?
The PSC are encouraging extremism and radicalism on Wits campus. Their students have threatened SAUJS students by saying that they feel ‘justified to cut [their] throat here and now’. The PSC have also painted a message on their display that reads ‘Amandla Intifada’, literally meaning ‘power to the Intifada’ (Palestinian wave of terror). Did you know that by the end of the Second Intifada, more than one thousand Israelis were murdered, and more than eight thousand Israelis were wounded? This incitement to violence is inexcusable on campus.
What action will the University take to remove this rhetoric from its campus and how will you ensure the safety of Jewish students on campus?
University should be a space for constructive debate and honest discussions. Radical extremism has found its way onto Wits campus, and this is of grave concern to all students at Wits.
As a member of the student body, I call on you, the Dean of Students, to issue an official statement by the University clarifying that a negotiated agreement was made by all parties, and that the PSC failed to uphold the agreement. I call on you to take disciplinary action against the leaders of the PSC who have consistently been encouraging of hate speech, violence and terrorism as well as failing to respect their agreement and bringing the University into disrepute.
Please put an end to all this NOW. You are allowing Wits University to become a breeding ground for hate speech and intimidation with no repercussions for the offenders whatsoever.
Today is International Holocaust Remembrance Day (IHRD), January 27th, as designated by the United Nations General Assembly. Today #WeRemember the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau and we honour the victims and survivors of the Holocaust.
Today, we have seen anti-Semitic graffiti painted in a building at Wits University. Only 2 weeks have passed since one of our students was verbally accosted with anti-Semitic remarks on Wits main campus.
SAUJS unequivocally condemns the anti-Semitism that is being demonstrated on campus. There can be no justification for such hateful, ignorant and offensive acts.
SAUJS has been in contact with the office of the Dean of Students to ensure that the graffiti be removed and to find those responsible.
SAUJS maintains that every student on campus should be free from intimidation, regardless of their race, religion, gender or self-identification. Jewish students are no exception. We call on the University (Wits - University of the Witwatersrand) and the Wits Student Representative Council (Wits SRC) to condemn this blatant Anti-Semitism in the strongest possible terms.
We will continue to work for the rights of our students across the country.
If you have any information regarding these incidents, please contact:
011 645 2595
Read our statements and keep up to date with our SAUJS news here!