Israel-Palestine conflict more than blue and red

Kathryne LeBell, Views Editor

This is an opinion article and does not necessarily reflect the views of The Tulane Hullabaloo.

There are a large number of Tulane students who support Israel’s efforts against violence and terrorism. This is a valid viewpoint. According to The Tulane Israel Public Affairs Committee, since the beginning of October alone, there have been almost countless numbers of attacks against Israeli citizens. But, according to TIPAC and their sponsored-event, “Wear Blue: Tulane Stands With Israel,” all of Tulane agrees. This is not a statement of fact. Tulane as an institution has not offered its support for Israel. There are pro-Palestine organizations on campus and students who advocate for Palestinian victims. Stating that all of Tulane stands with a country that has committed numerous human rights violations is not a fair claim.

There are a number of pro-Israel organizations on campus: Tulane University Students Supporting Israel, TIPAC, Tulane Green Wave Israel Scholars and, by association, Chabad at Tulane. A large percentage of the student body identifies as Jewish and last year, the event Declare Your Freedom 2.0 was held on campus, exalting the Zionist point of view in support for Israel.

With almost 100 students wearing blue in support for Israel, as well as a large number of students fitting into the Zionist demographic, at first glance it might seem that as a student body, Tulane overwhelmingly supports Israel in the conflict.

At the same time, however, student organizations such as Tulane Students for Justice in Palestine advocate the opposite. Comparing the numbers, these students are a minority, but still a voice that must be recognized. Furthermore, acknowledging that Palestinian civilians have been victims of this conflict is essential to understanding the situation overall.

Both sides have committed grievous war crimes. The Hamas, though not representative of the entire Palestinian population, must stop firing rockets and hoarding weapons, putting civilians on both sides at risk. Israel cannot bomb hospitals, use human shields or commit any number of other U.N.-sanctioned human rights violations. Israel’s attacks on Gaza escalate the violence even higher, without hindering terrorists in any fashion.

All of Tulane does not stand with Israel. A more accurate statement might be that Tulane stands with the victims of this conflict, people who never asked for this to happen. Even more, for a pro-Israel organization’s event, something like “Tulane Students Stand with Israel,” is less definitive and labeling of every member of the Tulane community and would be more accurate. In doing this, these events might carry more clear purposes and exist more effectually. Right now, events such as these are alienating people who, while not in clear and absolute support of Israel, acknowledge the crimes being committed and wish to offer their support to help end them.

Kathryne is a junior at Newcomb-Tulane College. She can be reached at [email protected]