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Students worry about Islamophobia, yet chant ‘from the river to the sea’ during walkout

ANALYSIS: Activist says it’s just ‘a call for a one-state solution with equal rights for everyone under the law’

Anti-Israel students and their supporters expressed worries about “Islamophobia” at last month’s Princeton Public Schools Board of Education meeting, specifically regarding a student walkout coordinated with Princeton University students.

One student claimed students’ keffiyehs — “symbols of Palestinian heritage and resistance” — had been “confiscated,” and that walkout participants were called “agitators.”

The student also complained about being “filmed without consent” (once they were off school grounds, mind you), the videos of which were subsequently put on social media and (allegedly) led to cyberbullying.

Another student alleged she had been called a “terrorist” on “numerous occasions,” and that when Osama bin Laden “died” someone asked her if she “was ok.”

Princeton grad student Muhammed Bahri said he and other Princetonites had been “approached” about the walkout, and hence assisted the Princeton HS participants.

Bahri claimed PHS students had “merely interacted” with himself and his collegiate peers, and that there was no element of “hate” associated with the protest — even though walkout participants chanted “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

Despite the phrase largely being recognized as a call for the decimation of Israel and its people, Asma Elhuni of American Muslims for Palestine New Jersey told the school board (video below) that it’s actually just “a call for a one-state solution with equal rights for everyone under the law.”

MORE: ‘From the river to the sea’ … but students don’t even know which ones

Going full critical oppression studies mode, Elhuni said the slogan “addresses a very specific geographic location where Jews are people of privilege backed by law, by arms, and have institutional power the way white people hold the power in the U[nited] S[tates].”

American Muslims for Palestine New Jersey’s website has a section about the “Nakba,” describing it as “the beginning of the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homeland”:

Actually, the process of forcing Palestinians out of their homes and into exile began after the United Nations partitioned Palestine in November 1947. From that time, until an armistice was signed on Jan. 1, 1949, Jewish militias and terrorist groups killed 13,000 Palestinian, forced 750,000 – more than half the Palestinian population — into exile and permanent refugee status, and depopulated and/or destroyed more than 500 villages. The Nakba continues today as a result of Israeli occupation policies that are intent on forcing Palestinians to leave Palestine.

(Just don’t ask why that armistice had to signed, or what happened to Jews in the Palestinian section of the partition … not to mention in the rest of the Muslim world.)

Here’s the executive director of American Muslims for Palestine at George Washington University earlier this year, yelling that the United States and Israel “stand for” imperialism … but that Palestinians and their allies will “take them back”:

According to one Princeton HS student, walkout activists were so worried about Islamophobia that they had no compunctions about graffitiing their school, “running through the school with drums during AP testing,” and distributing unapproved flyers with phrases such as “Teacher, what did you do during the Gaza genocide?”

Not to mention, there were no apparent ramifications from the school or district for students ditching exams to march in the walkout. All they had to do to leave campus, it seems, was to sign out — “as per school protocol.” Oh.

The Daily Princetonian, which only recently reported on the board meeting, failed to mention the coordination between Princeton HS and college students, instead zeroing in on the Muslim community’s concerns.

MORE: Muslim school board member was against 9/11 tribute, wanted teachers screened for Islamophobia

IMAGE: Dubrouskaya Tatsiana/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 20 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.