Santa Ana High School Orange County Hosting “Nakba Event” With Antisemitic Speaker
Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, the grandson of former South African president Nelson Mandela and one of South Africa’s most outspoken “anti-Zionists,” is currently on a tour of the US for what is dubbed the Mandela Nakba 75 Tour.
2023 marks the 75th anniversary of the Nakba (“Catastrophe” in English), when over 750,000 Palestinians were banished from their homes upon the formation of the settler-colonial state of Israel. Today, there are close to five million Palestinian refugees who continue to demand their Right to Return to the homes and lands from which they were exiled.
To commemorate the Nakba, the U.S. Palestinian Community Network (USPCN) and the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (NAARPR) have arranged a brief U.S. Nakba Day 75 tour, to take place from May 15th – May 20th, featuring Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, elected member of the South African National Assembly representing the African National Congress – and grandson of the late Nelson Mandela – as the tour’s keynote speaker.
Besides the lie that 750,000 Arabs were banished (many fled, either in fear or at the encouragement of Arab leaders who promised they would return after their certain victory), note how Israel is referred to as a “settler-colonial state”, completely illegitimate with no right to exist.
Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela has a history of engaging in antisemitic tropes and militant, anti-Israel rhetoric. For example, in a March 2022 speech, he blamed Israel for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, referring to “the apartheid Israel dogs of war” and saying that the “Zionist lobbying machine” has “wormed itself into our structures overtly and covertly.” In the same speech, he said that African countries should take steps to “isolate apartheid Israel for the evil apartheid pariah state that it is.”
And Mandela is not the only one associated with this tour, who is associated with highly disturbing views and rhetoric.
One of the sponsors, The Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM), has an extensive track record in expressing explicit support for terrorists and terror activities against Israel, frequently publishing posts in support of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) operatives, and referring to their casualties as “martyrs.” For example, in February 2023, PYM organized rallies in Washington DC and Los Angeles in support of PIJ operatives in Jenin who were killed after opening fire on Israeli forces in Jenin. PYM has also expressed support for the kidnapping of Israeli soldiers and explicitly denies Israel’s right to exist. Additional examples of PYM’s radicalism can be found here.
Then there’s the US Palestinian Community Network (USPCN), a self-described “Palestinian community-based organization” whose founders and members have been linked to US-designated terror groups, such as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). For example, a May 2022 Facebook post describes convicted PFLP terrorist bomber Rasmeah Odeh as one of USPCN’s “founding members.” As recently as May 14, USPCN demonstrated its radicalism when it referred to attendees of a University of Wisconsin graduation ceremony as “warmongers and profiteers of ethnic cleansing” and praised a student who refused to sing the national anthem, referring to it as “imperialist.”
Mandela has already spoken in Milwaukee and Minneapolis, and is set to speak in Cleveland (Cleveland State University) tonight, followed by Orange Country (Santa Ana High School) tomorrow night, San Francisco (San Francisco State University) Friday night, and in Chicago (Chicago Teachers Union) Saturday night.
That’s right. One of the venues is a high school!
Santa Ana High School is available to rent for $151 an hour and can be rented through a platform called Facilitron. According to its website, Santa Ana High School is part of the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD), which serves the city of Santa Ana and parts of Irvine and Newport Beach.
In April, SAUSD approved 2 ethnic studies courses that attracted significant controversy due to their anti-Israel bias – course materials included articles and books referring to Israeli settlements in the West Bank as “Jewish land grabbing” and “ethnic cleansing.”
If you are as disgusted and disturbed as me that Santa Ana High School would agree to hold this event, featuring someone espousing such vile views, and sponsored by those with equally vile views, here are the people we can contact:
Elizabeth Enloe, Principal:
714-567-4903, [email protected]
Dr. Michael Lee, Assistant Principal, Attendance & Activities:
714-567-4911, [email protected]
Victor De Los Santos, Assistant Principal, Athletics and Student Relations:
714-567-4928, [email protected]
Oralia Cordova, Assistant Principal, Counseling:
714.567.4937, [email protected]
Andy Tang, Assistant Principal, Curriculum and Instruction:
714-567-4902, [email protected]
Santa Ana High School, main office phone number: