UC Irvine has finally taken action against on-campus virulent anti-Israel activists.
In an unprecedented move, the University of California, Irvine (UC Irvine) has placed students from the anti-Israel group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) on disciplinary probation for two academic years after they violently interrupted a campus lecture about Israeli soldiers.
An Israeli delegation from the Reservists on Duty NGO had arrived at UC Irvine in May to speak at an event organized by Students Supporting Israel, in an effort to counter “Anti-Zionism Week” on campus. Some 40 SJP activists disrupted the pro-Israel event and prevented the lecturers from speaking with loud chants. Many of the SJP members also wore t-shirts with the slogan “UC intifada” in support of Palestinian violence and terrorism against Israeli Jews.
Police were forced to escort the Israeli speakers to a different location on the campus out of safety concerns. Reservists on Duty later filed a complaint with the school’s administration and campus police.
UC Irvine’s ethics committee imposed a two-year probation on the SJP members, ending June 16, 2019. During the probationary period, the SJP members are required to attend 12 meetings with the school’s dean of students regarding free speech, and must also consult with the dean before hosting any on-campus events.
Failing to abide by the terms of the probation could “result in suspension or a revocation of the organization’s status,” according to UC Irvine’s Office of Inclusive Excellence.
UC Irvine is notorious for being a hotbed for anti-Israel and anti-Semitic activism.
In 2010, a group of anti-Israel students aggressively interrupted the speech of then-Israeli Ambassador to the US Michael Oren to the pro-Israel community on campus. The students, who became infamously known as the “Irvine 11,” were arrested, prosecuted and sentenced to three years of informal probation, after being found guilty of conspiracy to disrupt and disrupting.
California universities — including the University of California (UC) system, were listed by AMCHA as among the top 15 schools with the highest incidence of overall anti-Semitic activity in 2016.