As Campus Hostility to Israel Grows, Jews Are Learning to Keep Their Mouths Shut

As classes began for the semester, nine student organizations at the University of California, Berkeley law school amended their bylaws to prohibit inviting any speakers who support Israel or Zionism. This move, coordinated by an anti-Israel student group, reflects a growing trend on college campuses and beyond of excluding Jews unwilling to disavow the Jewish state. Among the effects is the phenomenon of young Jews who have simply learned never to mention Israel, or anything connected with it, in most social and professional settings. Melissa Langsam Braunstein, after conducting numerous interviews with those with firsthand experience, writes:

Support for Israel, of course, is mainstream among American Jews. In 2019, Gallup found that “95 percent of [American] Jews have favorable views of Israel,” and in 2021, the Pew Research Center reported that 82 percent of American Jews consider Israel “‘essential’ or ‘important’” to their Jewish identity, one of the highest markers of commonality among famously fractious co-religionists.

Yet younger Jews are feeling compelled to camouflage that piece of themselves. A 2021 Brandeis Center poll found that “50 percent of Jewish [college] students hide their Jewish identity and more than half avoid expressing their views on Israel.” A 2022 survey by the American Jewish Committee reported that “28 percent of American Jewish millennials say that [the] anti-Israel climate on campuses or elsewhere has damaged their relationships with friends” and “23 percent reported that the anti-Israel climate on campus or elsewhere has forced them to hide their Jewish identity.” These are nontrivial numbers.

A . . . recent NYU Law graduate offered: “I don’t hide that I’m Jewish or Zionist, but I don’t know I want to go around publicizing it, and that’s most likely because the loud voices that are anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic are so prevalent. . . . Had I not had these encounters at [NYU], I’d probably see it as a nuanced issue but wouldn’t feel as strongly as I do about not wanting to pick a fight openly—because they were so aggressive, because some of the things they said felt threatening. Seeing that is scary and upsetting. You carry that, and it’s part of the calculus going forward and what you’re sharing with people.”

Students and recent graduates described sharing pro-Israel views only around trusted friends out of fear of vilification on campus.

Read more at Washington Examiner

More about: Anti-Semitism, Israel on campus, University


Hizballah Is Learning Israel’s Weak Spots

On Tuesday, a Hizballah drone attack injured three people in northern Israel. The next day, another attack, targeting an IDF base, injured eighteen people, six of them seriously, in Arab al-Amshe, also in the north. This second attack involved the simultaneous use of drones carrying explosives and guided antitank missiles. In both cases, the defensive systems that performed so successfully last weekend failed to stop the drones and missiles. Ron Ben-Yishai has a straightforward explanation as to why: the Lebanon-backed terrorist group is getting better at evading Israel defenses. He explains the three basis systems used to pilot these unmanned aircraft, and their practical effects:

These systems allow drones to act similarly to fighter jets, using “dead zones”—areas not visible to radar or other optical detection—to approach targets. They fly low initially, then ascend just before crashing and detonating on the target. The terrain of southern Lebanon is particularly conducive to such attacks.

But this requires skills that the terror group has honed over months of fighting against Israel. The latest attacks involved a large drone capable of carrying over 50 kg (110 lbs.) of explosives. The terrorists have likely analyzed Israel’s alert and interception systems, recognizing that shooting down their drones requires early detection to allow sufficient time for launching interceptors.

The IDF tries to detect any incoming drones on its radar, as it had done prior to the war. Despite Hizballah’s learning curve, the IDF’s technological edge offers an advantage. However, the military must recognize that any measure it takes is quickly observed and analyzed, and even the most effective defenses can be incomplete. The terrain near the Lebanon-Israel border continues to pose a challenge, necessitating technological solutions and significant financial investment.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Hizballah, Iron Dome, Israeli Security