With highly aggressive and lavishly-funded opposition to Palestinian rights and Israeli accountability gaining pace here’s an uplifting piece that came across my Twitter feed today, from students at the University of Chicago. Besides the generally hostile environment of America during an election year, these students’ commitment to the Palestinian cause needs to be viewed through the lens of especially virulent attacks on Palestine supporters in Illinois, where the legislature passed a resolution a few months ago blacklisting those who boycott companies that profit from Israel’s illegal settlements on land stolen from Palestinians. Here’s a snippet:

UofC Divest Launches Campaign

‘Unfortunately, the University of Chicago has a long history of both failing to take socially responsible stances and actively perpetuating systems of oppression. Our university failed to divest from South Africa and Darfur even though many of our peer institutions did. The school also failed to divest from fossil fuels or to form a socially responsible investment committee, even though both initiatives were supported by an overwhelming majority (70-80%) of the student body. It has played a major role both locally and nationally in perpetuating segregation and gentrification…

Because of our powerful belief in justice and equity for all people, we are proud to bring our resolution calling for divestment from companies complicit in Israeli apartheid before College Council this spring quarter. We urge other members of the university community, including students, former students, faculty, and alumni, to support us as well by signing our petition and checking out other ways to get involved!’

Read the rest here: Press Release