Sam Creighton and Laurence Chacksfield,
THE UNION of Jewish Students (UJS) is calling for University of London Union (ULU) President, Clare Solomon, to resign over a comment she made on Facebook. Her remarks have been branded as anti-Semitic, with one person stating that "they would not look out of place on a neo-Nazi website". While Ms Solomon admits to posting the statement she denies any malicious intent.
This revelation comes only weeks after Ms Solomon raised concerns over an article printed in The London Student, which she claimed was anti-Semitic in nature and thus breached ULUs ‘safe space’ policy.
Her comment, posted on May 1st said: "Actually, there is no such thing as the ‘Jewish race’. Yes, there is the Jewish religion but not a Jewish people per se. Identity politics is a very fashionable argument at the moment. It questions the samenesses that group people together. I think you’ll find that there is no one way of being Jewish.
The view that Jews have been persecuted all throughout history is one that has been fabricated in the last 100 or so years to justify the persecution of Palestinians.
Although history is obviously a little hard to revisit, it is wrong to write off all the places where Jews, Muslims and Christians (and other faiths/non-faiths) have lived together.
I think you’ll also find that ALL religions have had their oppressors-some worse than others true, but to paint the picture that ALL Jews have ALWAYS had to flee persecution is just plainly inaccurate."
There are approximately 3,000 Jewish students within the University of London and some figures within the community are questioning Ms Solomon’s ability to represent these individuals in light of her comments. Carly McKenzie, Campaigns Officer for UJS, stated that "UJS is shocked by the ignorant, malicious and hypocritical remarks of ULU president Clare Solomon. We have lost confidence in her ability to represent Jewish Students and call on her to resign."
Abraham Mandel, President of the London Jewish Society, shared the same apprehensions, remarking that "These comments do significantly put into doubt Clare’s ability to represent the needs and issues facing Jewish students." Adam Levine, President of Queen Mary Jewish Society mirrored these concerns, adding that "She obviously does not know what being Jewish means and she really should find out before she makes such strong comments about what it means to be Jewish."
Ms Solomon is adamant that there was no anti-Semitic intent in what she wrote. She told Qmessenger "This badly-worded comment was something that I wrote in haste on Facebook at a very busy period. I’m sorry for any misunderstandings caused by what I wrote." She sought to clarify her position, saying that "My position is that Jewish people have always been persecuted throughout history nowhere more than during the holocaust when 6million were murdered by the Nazi’s.
I am totally against anti-Semitism and any persecution and oppression of Jewish people as I am against the oppression people on the grounds of any race or religion."