Duke University and UNC-Chapel Hill have planned an anti-Zionist and anti-Israel conference camouflaged as a conference on Gaza, March 22-24. Several scheduled speakers have compared Israel to Nazis and many others promote boycotting Israel. One of the opening speakers refers to Israel as a “terrorist state.”
The letter below was written by Gabriel Szulik and Orit Ramler Szulik.
Other letters are archived at Israeli Under Attack at UNC and Duke.
To all Duke University and UNC leaders,
My wife Orit and I are writing to BEG you to reconsider sponsoring this event titled “Conflict Over Gaza: People, Politics, and Possibilities” which is scheduled for March 22-24. The conference is sponsored by UNC’s Center for Middle East and Islamic Studies and the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies. Co-sponsors include many departments and organizations, including the Gillings School of Global Public Health.
Our family has lived in the Durham-Chapel Hill area for 21 years now, I attended Duke’s Fuqua Business School in 1998-2000, and my wife currently works as a Coach at the Delta Leadership program at Duke. She also sits on the Board of Advisors of the Nursing School at Duke.
We are simply disgusted and very disappointed by the agenda and attendees of this conference, all showing an anti-Israel and pro-BDS bias, which is unacceptable and speaks of the poor judgement by Duke and UNC in hosting this event. The conference doesn’t have a single speaker/presenter who will present the other side of the Gaza story, which includes the terrorizing of thousands of Israelis who constantly live under rocket attacks and terrorist threats; the fact that Gaza is governed by a designated terrorist organization, and the fact that Israel withdrew from Gaza almost 15 years ago and yet it continues to be blamed for the economic and social debacle in Gaza caused by Hamas.
Please reconsider this decision and cancel your sponsorship of this event, so you can preserve a moral standing and show that this kind of biased, anti-Israel propaganda is not tolerated at your prestigious academic institutions.
Orit Ramler Szulik
Be like Orit and Gabe and Make Your Voice Heard!
Contact the following UNC and Duke leaders to voice your concerns about this unbalanced and biased conference against Israel.
Duke President Vincent Price (919) 684-2424 firstname.lastname@example.org
UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz 919-962-1365 email@example.com
Duke Chair, Board of Trustees, Jack O. Bovender, Jr. firstname.lastname@example.org
UNC Board of Governors, Chair Harry L. Smith, Jr. email@example.com