The National Union of Students in the UK is pretty enormous. Pretty much every kid arriving at a University in the UK is pretty much signed up to this organisation by default. It’s a rare kid that opts out.
This woman, Malia Bouattia, has just been elected the new President of that organisation. Here she is on the UK’s Channel 4 news unable to explain why she’s only certain about boycotting Israel.
As a contact in the UK deeply connected with academia just told me:
“and it’s largely BECAUSE of her views on Israel that she got elected i.e. the campaign to highlight her antisemitism helped her.”
She’s also the one who led the successful efforts to stop the NUS condemning the Islamic State because it would be “Islamophobic”.
The National Union of Students has come under fire after it refused to condemn ISIS – because of fears it was ‘Islamophobic’.
Students put forward a motion at the body’s National Executive Council meeting calling for the condemnation of terrorist atrocities and support for the Iraqi people.
But the call was defeated after a rebellion led by Black Students Officer Malia Bouattia, who said the motion was merely a ‘justification for war’.
Obviously, as a virulent BDS (against only Israel) supporter, she wouldn’t dare refrain from condemning the IDF. Oh wait, look, there’s more, here she is tacitly supporting “violent resistance” which we all know is code for Palestinian terrorism from Will Lloyd at The Tab.
In the video, Bouattia argues that Muslims should support Palestinian “resistance” but they fail to do so due to “internalised Islamophobia”. For Bouattia, peace talks between Israel and Palestine aren’t peace talks – they’re “the strengthening of the colonial project”.
This potential future President of all the students in the UK goes on to argue that the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement, in which she has been “heavily involved”, is no alternative to resistance:
“To consider that Palestine will be free only by means of fundraising, non-violent protest and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement is problematic… Boycott can be misunderstood as the alternative to resistance by the Palestinian people.”
I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about her soon. Perhaps she’ll even get to play Aussie Dave’s famous “Anti-Zionist not Antisemite” game. I wouldn’t hold my breath for the result.
Update: apparently the entire process of electing this woman has led MP John Mann to issue the following press release against racism at the National Union of Students.
MP to organise rally against NUS racism
Commenting on reports today of NUS delegates applauding speeches opposing the commemoration of the Holocaust, John Mann MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group Against Antisemitism, said:
“Today’s comments and their reception were inappropriate, offensive and point to a disturbing wider ignorance about antisemitism in NUS.”
“The Union is not doing enough to combat anti-Jewish hatred, and as such is failing in its responsibilities to its members.”
“The fact that delegates applauded these comments, and failed to recognise the attacks on Holocaust Memorial Day for what they were, underlines just how important an improved and far-reaching Holocaust educational effort in the NUS is.”
“I am aghast at the new President’s previous response to the concerns raised by Jewish students and expect her to meet their representatives and to build confidence that tackling antisemitism in NUS will be a priority.”
John Mann MP commented as he announced plans to convene a rally in Parliament against racism in NUS with former Presidents of the Union.