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Israeli Academic Extremism

A Call by Isracampus for the Immediate Dismissal of Shai Nitzan as Israel Deputy Prosecutor

by Steve Plaut
13/12/2009

We at Isracampus would like to ask you to take a few moments from your Hannuka week to strike a blow against anti-democratic Thought Control in Israel. We would like to ask you to take a few moments to demand the immediate dismissal of Israel’s worst politicized Inquisitor, Israel’s leftist thought policeman and enemy of democracy, Mr. Shai Nitzan, operating as the Deputy Prosecutor in the Ministry of Justice.

Nitzan, who has a track record of partisan political decision making as the Deputy director of Israel’s Prosecution Office, must be immediately dismissed because of his campaign of persecution and harassment against Dr. David Bukay, for the crime of incorrect thinking and speaking.

Dr. David Bukay is a lecturer in Middle East Studies at the University of Haifa with expertise in Arab history. He has conservative points of view and is very outspoken about them. About five years ago Bukay was the victim of a smear campaign of demonization at the University of Haifa. At the time, an Arab student who was active in the university branch of the communist party sat in on one of Bukay’s lectures without being registered in the class. The student then ran to the Arab press in Israel and claimed that in his lecture Bukay had repeatedly made racist derogatory comments about Arabs. After running the story there, it was also reported in the Hebrew press and web. From there, anti-Semitic web sites, including some run by Neo-Nazis, spread the story all over the internet.

None of the other students in the classroom had heard Bukay make any such remarks and many of these went public and claimed that the Arab communist student had fabricated the story. Hundreds of Bukay’s students backed Bukay in the case. Many wrote the Haifa University chiefs to give their side of the story. In any case, because of the uproar, the Rector at the University of Haifa, himself no Right-winger (he was a founder of Peace Now), appointed a committee of investigation to look into the charges against Bukay. They found that the charges were lies.

Then for about five years the story was nearly forgotten. Until last week.

What changed? Last week, the leftist Deputy Director of the Israel Prosecutor’s Office, Shai Nitzan, ordered Dr. Bukay to come into his office as part of an investigation into incorrect thinking and speaking by Dr. Bukay in his classroom. The story is reported in full in detail (in Hebrew only, alas) in the weekend issue of Maariv, and can be read here: http://www.nrg.co.il/online/1/ART1/977/492.html and here: http://www.nrg.co.il/online/1/ART1/977/491.html

The Deputy Prosecutor played the role of a medieval Inquisitor. He was acting supposedly on the basis of a “criminal complaint” that was filed against Bukay with the Prosecution recently by the misnamed “Committee against Racism.” That committee is a front group for the pro-terror Israeli communist party, a party of anti-Semitic racists that has never quite gotten around to repudiating Stalin. The Stalinists claimed Bukay had made insensitive anti-Arab statements in class. Bukay denies that he did. That charge, coming from communists, was enough for Nitzan to summon Bukay for interrogation.

In a scene looking like something in the dungeons of the KGB in the days of Stalin, Bukay was ordered to the offices of Nitzan. He was told that he must sign a confession that he had made anti-Arab statements in the classroom. He was ordered by Nitzan to sign an apology for those statements, under threat of being prosecuted by Nitzan for “incitement” and “racism” if he does not do so. He was ordered to commit in writing and promise to make no such statements henceforth in his classroom. Nitzan evidently believes that leftwing lawyers should be able to dictate the content of university lectures.

Bukay refused to sign.

Maariv this weekend not only runs the story of the KGB-like interrogation of Bukay in the dungeons of the Ministry of Justice, but also runs a long commentary on the affair composed by Maariv Deputy Editor Ben-Dror Yemini. Interrogating and prosecuting lecturers for what they say in the classroom is without precedent in Israel or any democracy, notes Yemini. He then reminds readers that Israel is filled with far-leftist anti-Israel and anti-Semitic members of Israel’s Academic Fifth Column, who routinely use the classroom to support terrorism against Jews, to call for Israel’s annihilation, to denounce Israel as a Nazi-like apartheid regime, and to urge law breaking. Not a single one of these has ever been interrogated, let along prosecuted. Yet here we have the spectacle of a naked political persecution of someone accused of having made politically incorrect statements in his classroom, a claim incidentally he denies, accused by a governmental enemy of freedom of speech.

Now as it turns out, even if Bukay HAD made the anti-Arab statements in the classroom that he was falsely accused of having made, they still should have been speech as protected as are outbursts that are made in scores of Israeli university classrooms every day by Israel’s tenured radicals. To take just a handful of examples from the same University of Haifa itself in which Bukay teaches, among the statements that did NOT ever trigger any investigation by the Prosecutor’s office have been these: The declaration by University of Haifa theater professor Avraham Oz that Israeli soldiers are Nazis and “Little Eichmanns”; the distribution via the “ALEF” chat list run by the same Oz on the University of Haifa computer of the names, addresses and photos of Israeli army officers with the heading “war criminals,” as a thinly disguised call to murder them or harass them; a denunciation of Israel for committing “genocide” distributed by University of Haifa psychology professor Ramsey Suleiman; calls by numerous University of Haifa faculty members for a worldwide boycott of Israel; calls by many of those same people for students to refuse to serve in the army; and countless other anti-Israel pronouncements and statements by leftist University of Haifa faculty members. And the University of Haifa is a relatively tame place when compared to the legions of tenured treason to be found at Ben Gurion University and at Tel Aviv University.

Israel has a long history of selective protection for freedom of speech. Numerous Israeli Jewish Right-wingers have been indicted and prosecuted for “racism,” for “sedition,” and for “incitement.” Fanatic Jewish leftists and Arab radicals never have been. The courts have repeatedly endorsed anti-speech prosecution and litigation directed against non-Leftists, while protecting and defending the most outrageous hate speech of far-leftist traitors. In one infamous court case, an Israeli sitting judge ruled that leftist sedition is protected speech while criticism of leftist sedition is libel.

Israel needs your help. Israel needs to get Shai Nitzan dismissed. Please write a short letter about the above outrage and demand Nitzan’s immediate dismissal. You should send it to the Minister of Justice, with copies to other Israeli leaders. A fax is more effective than an email.

Fax the Minister at the Ministry of Justice 972-2-6285438
Email (not for certain anyone reads it, so fax is better): sar@justice.gov.il

Copy to the Director General of the Ministry of Justice: Fax 972-2-6287757
And whose email is mancal@justice.gov.il

And to the Spokesman for the Ministry of Justice: Fax 972-2-6466722
And email dover@justice.gov.il

You can copy your letter to the Prime Minister’s office via this fax 972-2-5664838
or this web address: http://www.pmo.gov.il/PMOEng/Public+Applications/PublicApplications/
or this email address: PMO.HEB@it.pmo.gov.il

 

 

New Deputy Attorney General Almost as Bad as Old One

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4580107,00.html

The legal system as the left's political tool
Op-ed: In a democracy, different organizations have the right to be part of a demonization campaign against the state. But since when is it the state's duty to assist such bodies?

Ben-Dror Yemini
Published: 13.10.14

Dina Zilber, the deputy attorney general, was the person behind the amendment to the Prevention of Infiltration Law. The High Court rejected the first amendment. Zilber worked very hard to prepare the second amendment, which should have passed the High Court's test.

It didn't help. The High Court rejected not only the legislature's discretion but also the discretion of the advisor behind the law and of the attorney general who backed it.

Zilber is not just an advisor. She also has a sort of judicial role. She was the person who was supposed to rule on the decision made by National-Civil Service Administration Director Sar-Shalom Jerbi to remove B'Tselem from the list of bodies where one can do national civilian service.

Zilber wrote a long-winded opinion on the issue, which looks like a judicial decision. It turns out that she is in love with judicial activism too. The High court struck down her amendment, and she struck down Jerbi's decision.

In the infiltrators affair, there was a violation of basic rights. The argument revolved around proportionality. In the B'Tselem affair there was no violation of any right, as there is no right given to any political body to receive aid from the state. In both affairs, the legal element thought it was smarter. Both affairs point to a system failure.

Zilber's opinion finds it difficult to distinguish between a democratic society's duty to allow different organizations – including B'Tselem – to operate and the state's authority to decide which body to assist. Jerbi's decision was political in the democratic sense of the word. Zilber's decision was political in the dictatorial sense. Dictatorship of the law. Jerbi's decision is reasonable and inevitable. Zilber's decision is clearly unreasonable.

Why? B'Tselem Director Hagai Elad has the right to refuse to call Hamas a terror organization. The organization's past leaders (Anat Biletzki and Oren Yiftachel) have the right to support the "right of return" (which basically means Israel's destruction as a Jewish and democratic state). The organization has the right to appoint a refusenik, David Zonsheine, as its chairman.

The organization has the right to include on its public council a person like Hussein Abu Hussein, who says that Israel is a monster and that he wishes to step on its head, and recommends moving from talk to action. And the organization has the right to announce that it is "proud of his membership" in its management after he made these defamatory comments.

The organization has the right to employ a field researcher, Atef Abu a-Rub, who is a Holocaust denier (after denying it, B'Tselem admitted that Abu a-Rub said the things attributed to him). The organization has the right to receive a donation from Bubbes and Zaydes (BZP), a body which endorses the BDS (boycotts, divestment, sanctions) movement against Israel. The organization has the right to cooperate with one of the darkest bodies in the international arena (the United Nations Human Rights Council).

That's democracy. In democracy, different bodies have the right to be part of the demonization campaign against the state. But since when is it the state's duty to assist such bodies? I searched in Zilber's opinion for one precedent, one state which supports bodies like B'Tselem. There is no such thing. There is no need for dozens of pages of legal acrobatics to understand the obvious.

Late judge Menachem Elon once wrote, during a dispute with judge Aharon Barak, that there is a difference between the rule of law and the rule of the judge. The years have gone by. Professors Andrei Marmor and Menachem Mautner, who are not rightists, have argued each in his own way that the legal system is becoming the left's political tool to bypass the majority, after it lost its political power.

Zilber's decision proves things are only getting worse. This is not the way to serve the rule of law. This is the way to destroy it.

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Op-Ed articles appearing on IsraCampus.Org.il are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the opinion of IsraCampus.Org.il