Pro-Hamas activists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently barred Jewish students from attending classes on campus.
On Nov. 9, the protestors, a student group called the Coalition Against Apartheid (CAA), enacted a “blockade” on Lobby 7 as Jewish and Israeli MIT students were physically prevented from entering the building, according to an open letter shared by the MIT Israel Alliance.
MIT Israel Alliance also acknowledged that the CAA protest took place on the 85th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the pogrom that marked the beginning of the Holocaust.
University officials warned protestors to disperse from the area in an attempt to de-escalate the situation and threatened disciplinary action. However, the protestors refused to leave and continued to harass Jewish students despite multiple campus warnings.
“This is after students from the CAA harassed MIT staff members in their offices for being Jewish and interrupted classes in the past few weeks,” the group writes in the letter. “Many Jewish students fear leaving their dorm rooms and have stated that they feel MIT is not safe for Jews. This message is compounded by the public and private warnings of Hillel and many faculty that Jewish students should not enter MIT’s main lobby.”
Despite multiple warnings issued by the school, MIT President Sally Kornbluth said in a statement that the protesters who remained in Lobby 7 after they were told to leave will still be enrolled in the university due to potential “visa issues.”
“Because we later heard serious concerns about collateral consequences for the students, such as visa issues, we have decided, as an interim action, that the students who remained after the deadline will be suspended from non-academic campus activities,” Kornbluth stated. “The students will remain enrolled at MIT and will be able to attend academic classes and labs.”
Kornbluth’s statement also refused to name which protests were violent: “I am deliberately not specifying the viewpoints, as the issue at hand is not the substance of the views but where and how they were expressed.”
Campus Reform reached out to MIT for comment. This article will be updated accordingly.
Republished with permission from Campus Reform