“Hate leaflets” targeting the university’s president and professors have been distributed at the university in recent days, another incident that illustrates the level of polarization the topic of the Israel-Hamas conflict has reached on college campuses.
“This must be taken seriously. From the moment we feel that there may be an anti-Semitic gesture, we must intervene,” university president Stefan Ballage said in a phone interview.
In an email sent on Thursday to UQAM staff, Mr. Balage denounced the fact that leaflets targeting him personally were distributed.
The university’s new president, who took office last spring, will be prominently mentioned in a post in which he is described as a “Zionist.” Zionism refers to the political movement of a portion of the Jewish people with the goal of establishing a Jewish state in Palestine.
Newspaper He was unable to see the posts in question, but the source provided examples of their content. “Despite the mystery surrounding the lunatic who represents our mascot, the message he wants to convey, in its entirety, is quite clear: the genocide of Palestinians does not concern us; Let the ethnic cleansing take its course,” the publication charged.
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Jewish sounding names
The anti-Semitic nature of the leaflets can be seen in the way they are distributed. Mr. Ballage explains that professors with Jewish-sounding names may have discovered that these flyers had been placed under their office door.
“UQAM has a duty as a university to promote peace and respect,” deplores the university’s rector.
The name of Professor François Audet, who specializes in humanitarian crises, will also be mentioned in one of the publications. He is not giving lessons in this session, but he is used to speaking in the media.
“Obviously the authors [des tracts] “They haven’t bothered to do their research on what I’m saying,” says Mr. Audet, who is specifically concerned with the effects of bombings on civilian populations.
“It’s a bit unfortunate. They’re doing damage to current issues.” “It’s the first time in 30 years I’ve seen this much polarization.”
Incidents illustrating growing tensions over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are increasing on college campuses these days. An altercation at Concordia University escalated to the point where three people were injured Wednesday. A lecturer at the University of Montreal was filmed at the scene insulting Jewish students.
At UQAM, the authors of the publications remain anonymous, notes the university rector. It is also unknown whether they were members of the Oqamite community or not.
A source who viewed one of the posts indicates that there is a reference to a Marxist group called La Riposte Socialiste.
Simon Berger, a student at UQAM and activist within the group, responded to our interview request.
He points out that he is not aware of the publications targeting professors or the university president personally. “Your email taught me that,” he says.
While Mr. Berger distances himself from the posts, he does not condemn them. He denounced the position of UQAM management, which he described as “shameful.”
The origin of this issue appears to be linked to posters titled “Intifada until Victory” that were placed at the university at a public meeting in solidarity with the Palestinian people on October 16.
FACEBOOK PHOTO Screenshot Screenshot of the Facebook event of October 16, 2023 organized by La riposte sociale. The event, titled “Intifada until Victory,” aims to be a solidarity activity with the Palestinian people. However, UQAM Student Life Services asked the group to remove the posters. Screenshot of Facebook photo
Mr. Berger explains that Student Life Services asked the group to remove the posters, deeming the topic “too divisive.” “This is an attack on freedom of expression.”
For him, this publication story is a “conversion.” “There are 10,000 people being killed by the occupying army. This is the most important thing.”
“While genocide is occurring in Palestine, they… [l’administration] They care about peace at their university. “For me, this is complicity with the actions of Israeli imperialism,” Mr. Berger said.
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