The University of Pennsylvania campus is a hotbed of antisemitism, with students openly chanting, “We are Hamas,” and others accused of hate-motivated anti-Jewish crimes still allowed in class.
NY Post (h/t Nita) Students Eyal Yakoby and Jordan Davis this week filed a lawsuit claiming Penn broke federal civil rights law and selectively enforces its rules to “avoid protecting Jewish students from hatred and harassment.” Yakoby, 21, claimed to The Post there are still “professors and students” at the university who he says are “openly anti-Semitic.”
“It’s madness — they’re still coming to class and employed by Penn,” he said. “We had one student who was back in class last Monday while facing [criminal] charges. “I think it’s absolutely despicable and a failure of the university.
President Liz Magill told a congressional hearing Tuesday the university has formed an antisemitism task force, but her job hangs in the balance after she refused to say at the hearing calling for genocide against Jewish people violated the school’s code of conduct. (This just in: Magill has resigned)
Tara Tarawneh, a 20-year-old college junior was still attending class this week, according to sources, despite praising terror group Hamas for its “glorious Oct. 7” terror attack on Israel which left 1,200 dead and over 200 more Israelis taken hostage.
She was also arrested for allegedly stealing an Israeli flag from the front of a Campus Apartments house near the Ivy League school. Tarawneh has since been charged with theft and receiving stolen property, according to court documents viewed by The Post.
Tarawneh, a 2020 graduate of King’s Academy in Madaba, Jordan — has been open in her views, with video of her addressing a pro-Palestinian crowd going viral.
“I remember feelings so empowered and happy, so confident that victory was near and so tangible,” she told a crowd about the monstrous Oct. 7 attack, as reported by the Daily Pennsylvanian, Penn’s independent student-run media organization.
On Friday, bioengineering student Liam Pharr, 21, said he believes terrorism has taken root at the Ivy League college after witnessing students chanting, “We are Hamas” — designated a terrorist organization by the US, EU, UK and many others — on UPenn grounds.
“I’m not Jewish but there is absolutely anti-Semitism on campus,” Pharr told The Post. “A couple of weeks ago, there was a group on campus who joined hands and chanted, ‘We are Hamas.’ I was in the library and I heard it. “It’s crazy the kind of s–t people can say on campus and get away with it. A terrorist organization has infiltrated a place where the next generation is getting the best education they possibly can,” he continued.
“I’ve seen social media posts circulating of Jewish students holding an Israel flag in peaceful protest, with the caption ‘remember their faces, they’ll be on the wrong side of history’.”
Meanwhile, the campus has seen shocking incidents including graffiti calling for “intifada” meaning “uprising,” “Avenge Gaza” and, sickeningly, “The Jews R Nazis” scrawled on a building next to a Jewish fraternity.
Students on campus are also getting creeped out by mysterious “outsiders” joining pro-Palestine demonstrations. Nursing student Sam Graybill, 18, said she has also noticed a rising tide of aggression towards Jews among the student body both on campus and online and spotted older non-students at rallies on campus.
“There is a lot of anti-Semitism,” Graybill told The Post. “Some people here are super aggressive towards Jewish people. There’s a protest every few days. There is a lot of anger and aggression. “Some people who aren’t students here will come and start protests. They’re older, not grandpa old, but they just genuinely look a lot older than most students,” she added.
“A bunch of my friends are Jewish and they worry about their safety on campus. I’d estimate 40% of anti-Semitism is on campus and 60% is online.”
Her thoughts were echoed by Alkaid Zeng, 23, who also said he’d noticed older people joining in the crowds at protests. “There’s a lot of outrage from both sides,” Zeng said Friday on campus. “There are protests every other day. The people taking part in the protests are faculty, students and outside people coming in.”
Zeng said he believes the university leadership is virtue signaling without truly caring for its students. “We receive emails on a daily basis from the president, the chancellors and deans of the various schools saying they’re listening to students’ voices but they’re being very careful not to take sides,” he said.
“The administration is not showing they care. The students are not seeing there is much care or empathy from the administration,” Zeng added. “Even if they cannot do much, they could at least show they care.”
A letter from 74 members of Congress has called for Magill and the presidents of MIT and Harvard to resign following their appearance at the congressional committee this week.
In addition, the board of UPenn’s prestigious Wharton Business School have said they have lost confidence in the university’s leadership, while numerous donors have pulled millions in funding for the college. “It’s absolutely preposterous that the head of the university says it’s completely OK to make statements calling for a large portion of the student base to be killed,” Pharr told The Post.
UPenn is facing increasing pressure to change its leadership, from major donors to those on its own staff — and even from Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro. The governor, who is Jewish, called Magill’s testimony “shameful” and urged the board of trustees to meet to decide whether her statements were in line with the school’s values.
“Based on her statements, I think she should go. You can say what’s happening to the Palestinians is wrong, but you can’t say people should be killed,” he added. “The school is not supporting Jewish students. “There was no statement even condemning Hamas until the Huntsman family said they’d pull their funding. Only when there’s money involved do they do anything.”
A horde of pro-Palestinian protesters spewing hateful threats at a Jewish-owned falafel shop in Philadelphia was put on notice by Pennsylvania’s governor after their “blatant act of antisemitism.”
Gov. Josh Shapiro’s rebuke came after dozens of enraged protesters marched on Goldie’s — an Israeli-style falafel spot located in Center City — on Sunday night, surrounding the storefront while chanting, “Goldie, Goldie, you can’t hide, we charge you with genocide.”
Tonight in Philly, we saw a blatant act of antisemitism — not a peaceful protest.
A restaurant was targeted and mobbed because its owner is Jewish and Israeli. This hate and bigotry is reminiscent of a dark time in history. https://t.co/WS2guahnsQ
— Governor Josh Shapiro (@GovernorShapiro) December 4, 2023