Steven Salaita is one of the leaders of the anti-Israel academic boycott movement in the United States. He even has authored a guide for other faculty as to how to implement boycotts of Israel at their own universities.
Salaita currently is an associate professor of English at Virginia Tech and starting in August will join the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign's American Indian Studies Dept.
But for today it's worth noting that Salaita is following the path we are seeing widely on social media and elsewhere, including among leaders of the Boycott Divest and Sanctions movement in the United States — blaming Zionism for anti-Semitism.
We saw it in my post yesterday about a photoshop showing Theodor Herzl, the founder of modern Zionism, giving birth to Hitler — an image approved of by Max Blumenthal, a frequent anti-Israel BDS speaker on campuses.
And we see it in this tweet by Salaita, blaming the recent outbursts of anti-Semitism around the world on Zionists who "eagerly conflating Jewishness and Israel" and therefore "are partly responsible when people say antisemitic shit in response to Israeli terror." (See Featured Image)
As we have seen in the recent anti-Semitic demonstrations in Europe, Turkey and even Boston, Jew hatred is as powerful a motivating force now as it has been for millennia — long before modern Zionism.
Did Zionists cause the pro-Palestinian protesters to carry signs that the Star of David is the "Star of the Devil" and "The Jews are Beasts"?
The Gaza conflict has been a clarifying event in many ways, not the least of which is how Twitter has opened a window into the soul of the anti-Israel boycott movement.