Protests are expected to disrupt a talk Wednesday evening by Alan Dershowitz at Columbia University.
Dershowitz's sold-out talk about the Constitution, free speech, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will likely be disrupted by dozens of
anti-Israel student activists, said Ofir Dayan, the media coordinator for Students Supporting Israel, the group hosting the event, reports the Free Beacon.
"They sign up in large numbers so that they can protest," she said. "[They] have an anti-normalization policy, which means they do not engage or discuss with anyone who has a different opinion. Their opinion is that Israel should be wiped off the map and that all terrorism targeting Israel or Israelis is ‘legitimate,' so anyone who is against the murder of innocent civilians and supports Israel's right to exist is shunned from the conversation," according to Dayan.
Some 30 seats have been reserved by those affiliated with Students for Justice in Palestine, Columbia University Apartheid Divest, and Jewish Voice for Peace, according to Dayan, a tactic she said has been used in the past to facilitate shout-downs of SSI programming.
Dershowitz told the Washington Free Beacon in an email, "I am a centrist liberal who supports a two state solution. If protesters try to stop students from hearing my centrist views it shows how afraid they are of differing perspectives. I'm confident that Columbia University will assure my physical safety and allow the students to listen to me. I invite protesters to ask me hard questions but I will not be silenced by intolerant censors, either of the extreme left or extreme right."
From Dershowitz's Twitter feed:
I invite protesters to ask me hard questions but I won't be silenced by intolerant censors of the extreme left/right https://t.co/T2nh2iPmzx— Alan Dershowitz (@AlanDersh) September 25, 2017
1. According to media reports, radical students plan to disrupt my speech at Columbia in order to prevent me sharing my moderate ideas...— Alan Dershowitz (@AlanDersh) September 26, 2017
-RW2. re prospects for peace in the Mid East. This is what I wrote about the matter for @NYDailyNews https://t.co/rQRD9ZXifu— Alan Dershowitz (@AlanDersh) September 26, 2017