Controversy has erupted at UCLA over a pro-Palestinian presentation on Zoom this week that was allegedly offered as extra credit for some students.
And one of the professors behind the seminar told The Post that Israel is "a power driven by an exclusionary racial ideology" and "maintains a brutal occupation of Palestine."
The "Emergency Teach-In On The Crisis in Palestine" was convened Wednesday on the Los Angeles campus by professors Saree Makdisi of the school's English department and Sherene Razack, chair of the gender studies department.
A 2015 alumna of UCLA, Davina Farahi, 31, who works with the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, heard about the presentation and signed on to Zoom to watch it.
"It started out as Makdisi representing Israel as a colonial power and compared it to a colonizing apartheid state," Farahi claimed to The Post. "Razack framed it as an issue of everyone being made to see Palestinians as the 'other' so people won't care when they die."
Razack did not dispute claims about the tone and content of the talk.
"Yesterday's panel did depict Israel as a settler colonial society that came into existence through the dispossession of Palestinians and that maintains a brutal occupation of Palestine," she said in an emailed statement to The Post.
"Further, Israel practices Apartheid and Palestinians and Jews do not possess equal rights under law, a conclusion widely shared by scholars — Israeli and non-Israeli alike, and by Amnesty International, among others. As my panel member Professor Makdisi put it in a recent article in The Nation, Israel is 'a colonial power driven by an exclusionary racial ideology.'"
Several Jewish graduates of UCLA accused Asian American studies associate professor Dr. Jennifer Chun of canceling her class and telling students to go to the lecture, and The Post was shown a text that appeared to be from a teaching assistant telling students they could get extra class credit if they went to the event.
"I didn't require students to go to the event," Chun said in an email to The Post. She did not respond to questions about whether she canceled her class to encourage students to attend the event.
Her denial was backed up by a statement put out by UCLA's official newsroom.
"There are a variety of events taking place this week focused on aspects of the conflict between Israel and Hamas," the statement said. "These events are not sponsored by UCLA, but by student groups and faculty members whose free expression rights are protected under the First Amendment of the Constitution. Allowing the use of campus facilities for such events is part of UCLA's legal obligation under the First Amendment and does not constitute the university's endorsement of any event, its speakers or the views they express.
"There was also a rumor spreading that a professor made attendance to one of these events mandatory," the statement added. "This rumor is false."
UCLA said claims that a teaching assistant told students they would be given extra credit if they attended the event were false as well.
Makdisi told The Post in an email that the event "wasn't a lecture; it was a voluntary teach-in."
"It was for whoever wanted to attend," he said. "Have you asked the people who are ... complaining so vociferously about an event that they either didn't attend or didn't understand whether they think that it's also unfair that the various events sponsored by [Jewish campus organization] Hillel and other campus organizations have been 'one-sided'? Or do these accusations of 'bias' work only in one direction?"
Businessman Shervin Natan, another UCLA grad, told The Post that he was disgusted over what he called the "anti-Israel, antisemitic" talk.
"These university professors are indoctrinating their own version of history and denying the deaths of innocent children," Natan said.