Scandal-plagued liberal college faces new probe over antisemitism, embrace of Hamas

Scenic Oberlin College, based in Ohio, is once again rocked by a massive anti-Semitism scandal, with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights investigating the school for failing to stop harassment of Jewish students. There is.

The new federal investigation is just the latest setback for the liberal arts college. The liberal arts college was reeling from a 2021 Fox News digital report that the school’s “peace professor” Mohammad Jafar Mahrati called for the eradication of the Jewish state during his time as head of state. Ambassador of the Republic of Iran to the United Nations in the late 1980s.

According to a letter from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in late September, “OCR will investigate whether the university failed to respond to harassment of students based on their national origin (shared Jewish ancestry).” There is.

OCR’s letter was sent to Oberlin College alumnus Dr. Melissa Landa, who filed a formal complaint in 2019. Dr. Landa told FOX News Digital: “Before Professor Maharati deleted his students’ blogs, I read them along with other alumni and said, ‘This reflects his violent anti-Semitic teachings. Through readings and readings, I taught students that Israel is an apartheid settler-colonial regime and that Hamas is a benevolent organization representing the will of the Palestinian people.

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Oberlin College in Ohio is under investigation by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights for allegedly failing to stop harassment of Jewish students. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

Randa spoke “Big Money Show” In early November, he reported on Fox Business about an alleged outbreak of anti-Semitism at Oberlin College.

The OCR investigation into Oberlin College and Maharati’s management coincides with the October 7 massacre of 1,400 people by Hamas in southern Israel. The massacre thrust Hamas’ deadly anti-Semitism and violent jihadist ideology into the spotlight. “Mr. Maharati supported a terrorist organization that committed the worst genocide of Jews since the Holocaust. For this reason alone, Mr. Oberlin should be terminated from his employment,” Landa said.

“Oberlin College is happy to see Jewish students participating in Shabbat dinners and baking challah on Friday afternoons,” said Landa, who graduated from the college in 1986. There is an intolerance for Jewish students and faculty who wish to express their Jewishness by There is a fundamental lack of this and the expectation that all Zionist expression must be abandoned in order to be accepted on Oberlin’s campus.”

Oberlin College Media Director Andrea Simakis told FOX News Digital, “On September 29, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) confirmed a 2019 complaint regarding alleged harassment of Jewish students on campus. This complaint was filed by a 1986 Oberlin College graduate, and Oberlin College is working with OCR to address this request.

Mohammad Mahrati, former Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations

Mohammad Mahrati, Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations at the time. Maharati, currently a professor at Oberlin College in Ohio, has come under fire for his extreme anti-Israel views. (Photo by Bill Foley/Time & Life Pictures) (Getty Images)

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She continued that Professor Maharati is on vacation this semester. Professor Maharati said she believes in the right of all peoples to exist in peace and supports a two-state solution where Israelis and Palestinians can coexist peacefully. ”

Landa provided OCR with documents related to alleged anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incidents from 2014 to 2017, including student comments about Jewphobia on campus.

According to Landa’s complaint, in the fall of 2016, “Oberlin students enrolled in Islamic and Peace Studies Professor Jafar Mahrati’s Religion 270 posted anti-Israel blogs online that reflected the professor’s lectures and assigned readings. “I did.”

The complaint alleges that Maharati’s class instruction included claims such as “Israel is a colonialist state” and “Israel is an apartheid state.” The complaint mentions him in connection with “support for Hamas and terrorism.”

Numerous questions to Fox News Digital reporters for Maharathy went unanswered.

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“Oberlin abhors anti-Semitism and all forms of hatred, discrimination, and harassment,” Professor Simakis said in a statement. “We work every day to ensure that anti-Semitism has no place on campus.” This is our campus. ”

“To correct this oppression, harassment, and exclusion of Jewish students, Oberlin should adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism,” Randa said. “We made this request, but she ignored our communications.” . ”

Highly controversial Oberlin College president Carmen Twilly Ambar is a member of the slain Iranian dissident whose killing was reportedly covered up by the Maharati, according to two Amnesty International reports. For many years, he refused to meet with his family.

Fox News Digital has been told by critics that David Hertz, Amber’s chief of staff, is said to be vehemently opposed to the university’s adoption of the IHRA definition. Hurts did not respond to questions from Fox News Digital reporters.

In a fact sheet provided by the university, Maharati said: he denied being an accomplice In 1988, the clerical regime committed mass murders of 5,000 Iranian political prisoners.

The federal investigation into allegations of anti-Jewish hatred at Oberlin College unfolds as U.S. Department of Education Secretary Miguel Cardona announced on Tuesday that federal funding for the university would be cut off if it fails to combat anti-Semitism. has been done. In 2023, Oberlin College received more than $5 million in federal grants.

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Andrew Patinkin, a 2019 Oberlin graduate, told the Jewish News Agency that Israel-bashing is “pervasive” at the university. In 2016, the Jewish Press titled an article about pro-Israel students at Oberlin, “‘Liberal’ Oberlin doesn’t give speech rights to those who don’t hate Israel.”

Dr. Frieda Fuchs, an Oberlin-based scholar and former faculty member at the university, told Fox News Digital that “Oberlin College has limited “Pro-Palestinian students are currently dominating the discourse surrounding the Palestinian issue.” While it is commendable that Jewish students receive counseling, support, and comfort food from organizations like Chabad, there is room for more active involvement for all students. ”

Fuchs, a veteran campaigner against anti-Semitism at Oberlin, said, “As long as Oberlin College maintains a culture of negativity regarding Israeli issues, challenges related to anti-Israel sentiment will continue. Being able to take a proactive attitude and deal with problems is…

Gibson's Bakery GE

The owners of Gibson’s Food Mart and Bakery sued Oberlin College in 2017, alleging that the school defamed them and harmed their business as a result of their actions. (AP)

In 2016, after a massive campaign called for the ouster of Oberlin College professor Joy Karega, who wrote a series of anti-Semitic posts on Facebook blaming Israel and Jews for the 9/11 attacks. , the university reluctantly fired this non-tenured professor.

Rhodan Bazargan, a prominent Iranian-American human rights activist, has been campaigning since 2020 to force Oberlin College to fire Mahrati from his academic position.

Landa and Bazargan spoke at a protest against Maharati on the Oberlin College campus in November 2021. Mr. Bazarga’s older brother, Mr. Bijan, was murdered by the regime in 1988 for his left-wing views. “Oberlin College claims that Professor Maharati ‘believes,'” Bazargan told Fox News Digital. All people have the right to live in peace. ” Maharati’s silence on the October 7, 2023 attack by Hamas terrorists on Israel has raised questions about his stated beliefs. ”

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Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei speaks in Tehran

On Wednesday, November 1, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei attended a meeting with a group of students in Tehran, Iran. (Office of the Supreme Leader of Iran, Associated Press)

Iranian dissidents from the Bazargan Organization accused Maharati of being loyal to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The US government has designated the Iranian regime as the world’s worst state sponsor of international terrorism.

Bazargan said: “Maharati has not publicly condemned Iran’s gender apartheid Islamic regime’s atrocities against women, children and youth, despite the regime’s well-documented human rights violations. , there is a distinct lack of Maharati criticism on these issues.” Furthermore, the documents suggest that Mr. Maharati glorifies Hamas terrorists and labels Israel an apartheid state, yet he has never articulated his views on a two-state solution or It has never recognized the rights of Jews to the state. ”


He added, “Oberlin College’s continued support of Mr. Maharati is a shameful endorsement of his views and a disregard for justice, accountability, and human rights.”

Oberlin College has a long tradition of radical activism. In 2019, local bakery owners were awarded $44 million in damages after being accused of racial discrimination by students and school administrators.

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