Brown University Decides To Consider Divestment

Brown University caved to the demands of anti-Israel protesters this week. The university’s leadership has promised to consider voting on divestment from Israel, one of the protesters’ main demands, if they agree to take down their encampment on campus which began last Wednesday.

Brown would be the first university to consider divesting from Israel as protesters have made the demand in their demonstrations in universities across the United States for weeks.

Brown’s highest governing body, the Corporation, will hold a vote on the issue at its meeting in October. In return for the consideration, organizers of the protest at the school campus agreed to clear the Main Green encampment by 5 p.m. on May 3 and cease their demonstrations until the end of the school year. They are to not hold any unauthorized protests till Commencement, which would end on May 26.

In addition to divesting from companies with ties to the Israeli government, protesters are asking that the charges against the 41 students arrested in a University Hall sit-in on Dec. 11 be dropped.

While the divestment may happen depending on the Corporation’s vote, the university has not not agreed to drop the charges against the arrested students at this time.

According to the agreement between the university administrators and encampment organizers, students will still face disciplinary action for their involvement in the encampment protest.

Brown’s decision to consider divestment comes after the university opposed the idea, a point Rabbi Ron Fish of the Anti-Defamation League’s New England chapter made when criticizing the school’s move.

According to Fish, the deal would only be “validating a movement rife with antisemitism and hate” and creating incentives for radical protests and harassment of Jews.

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