NUS adopts EU definition of Antisemitism, including new antisemitism re: Israel

NUS, student, UK, antisemitism, racism and hatred of Jews

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NUS adopts EU Definition of Antisemitism

NUS adopts EU's definition of Antisemitism, including recognising New Antisemitism, that is manifestations of antisemitism in relation to Israel.

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801a Fighting Islamaphobi

MOTION: 801a

Heading: Anti – Racism: Fighting Islamaphobia (Amendment ADDS to the motion)

Submitted by: University of West England (not CR3); School of Oriental & African Studies; University of the Arts, London (not CFB4); Swansea University; University of Leicester (not CFB4); Portsmouth University, Manchester University, Manchester Metropolitan and Sussex University

Basket 1

Speech For: School of Oriental and African Studies (1 min)

Speech Against: Free (1 min)

Summation: Staffordshire University (0.5 min)

Conference Believes:

  1. That since the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, there has been a steady increase in racism and Islamaphobia, which has often manifested itself in physical attacks.
  2. This has reached new heights following Jack Straw’s comments about niqab being a barrier to participation in society, which were subsequently endorsed by Tony Blair.
  3. A wave of racist attacks followed these comments including at least one instance of a niqab being ripped from a woman’s head - in this and other incidents, the attacker specifically cited Straw’s comments.
  4. Bill Rammell has affirmed his support for Imperial College’s banning of the niqab, and plans have emerged from Department of Education and Skills asking staff to spy on “Asian looking” students.
  5. The fascist BNP called the local elections of 2006 a “referendum on Islam”, and more than doubled their number of elected representatives. The party has said the New Labour ministers’ comments have “left BNP spokesmen trailing”.
  6. The comments from Jack Straw, Bill Rammell and the Department for Education and Skills are not about “integration” but are fostering the climate of scapegoating which ultimately benefits the far right.
  7. Islamaphobia has increased throughout the “war on terror” as the government has tried to both divert attention from the disaster of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Lebanon, and also to justify them.
  8. That the model of integration that we should strive to for is shown in the anti-war movement that has united millions across the glob from many different backgrounds, in opposition to war and racism.

Conference Further Believes

  1. SU’s and NUS have a responsibility to help all students on campus, particularly religious and cultural Societies in their efforts to inform the wider community about what their society represents rather than making general assumptions and/or sweeping statements.

Conference Resolves

  1. To oppose the current racist and Islamaphobic backlash and any attempts to ban religious or other clothing, by working with Islamic societies and other groups fighting racism and attacked on civil liberties.
  2. To defend the right for Islamic societies and other groups to organise politically on campuses; we should welcome those who are fighting back against the racist policies and rhetoric of the government and their effects
  3. That SU’s and NUS should ensure that a ban on the hijab and niqab (headscarf and veil) should not be enforced at the present time or in the future across any campus, and if such a thing were to occur that both the SU’s and NUS should condemn and take immediate action against this injustice.


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Key references

The following may help you identify antisemitism and other types of racism

EU definition of antisemitism

Used by law enforcement throughout Europe

Behind much criticism of Israel is a thinly veiled hatred of Jews

Emanuele Ottolenghi, in The Guardian on Saturday November 29, 2003

A New Antisemitism

Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks, June 2002

Blurring the line

Fair critisism or antisemitism? By Abraham H. Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League (the ADL), in Haaretz on April 4, 2004

Antisemitism in 3-D

Differentiating legitimate criticism of Israel from the so-called new anti-Semitism. By Natan Sharansky in Jerusalem Post, on February 23, 2004

Anti-Zionism

What is Anti-Zionism?

Disagreeing with the policies of the Israeli government is in and of itself neither Antisemitic nor Anti-Zionist.

Even outside of this Anti-Zionism is not always Antisemitism, but many of those who claim to be anti-Zionist are in fact in fact peddling re-badged Antisemitism.

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