The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) recently sent a letter to Northeastern University President Joseph Aoun, asserting that he put an end to professors' academic bias against Israel, as well as to the intimidation being used to silence Jewish students who defend their Jewish identity in the classroom, the Spero Forum website reports today (August 21, 2013).
According to ZOA's investigation, political science professor Denis Sullivan -- director of Northeastern's Middle East Center -- goes furthest in abusing his authority in the classroom to violate his students' academic freedom. As one Jewish student described the classroom milieu, "When you question what Sullivan tells the class about Israel, Sullivan finds a way to make you feel stupid."
The ZOA makes it clear that Sullivan is not the only instructor who has been discriminatory against Jews at the Boston institution of higher learning. Other instructors and staff members that ZOA alleges are anti-Semitic include Berna Turam, professor of sociology and international affairs; Shahid Alam, professor of economics and a Muslim citizen of Pakistan; Uta Poiger, a Northeastern interim dean; Stephen Director, Northeastern provost; and Lori Lefkovitz, chair of Northeastern's Jewish Studies Department and a Jew herself, who claims that there is "no hostility toward Jews" at Northeastern.
ZOA's letter to Northeastern President Aoun exposes with intense moral clarity the stark failure of Jewish leaders and American educational institutions to keep Jewish students safe from a hostile environment. It is a wakeup call for all Jews and people of conscience to speak out in condemning this failure. Only consistent and unyielding pressure will protect Jewish youth from this kind of hatred.