Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Breaking News

CUNY Launches Probe of ‘Zionist Pigs’ Anti-Semitism at Brooklyn College

After last month’s anti-Zionist incident at Brooklyn College, the City University of New York tasked its chancellor with studying complaints of anti-Semitism at several of its campuses.

In addition to putting CUNY Chancellor James Milliken in charge of the probe, the university is establishing a task force to foster a more understanding and respectful environment, the Anti-Defamation League said in a statement Friday, in which it praised the institution for the actions.

The probe follows a string of recent incidents that the ADL characterized as featuring “anti-Israel bias” across CUNY campuses.

Students at Brooklyn College on Feb. 16 allegedly demanded that “Zionists” leave campus and referred to a professor at a meeting as a “Zionist pig,” prompting strong condemnations of the incident by the college administration.

That Thursday, state assemblyman from Brooklyn, Dov Hikind, called on Brooklyn College to discipline the involved students.

“The university needs to act on this and enforce disciplinary action on the students that participated,” the Democrat said in a statement. “It’s nice to issue a statement apologizing for what occurred, but actions speak much louder than words.”

In November, the New York City chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine invoked what ADL called an anti-Semitic stereotype in the lead-up to the “Million Student March” rally at Hunter College when it referred to those who run CUNY as a “Zionist administration.”

The pro-Palestinian organization said its members “categorically refute all claims of racism being thrown at the Million Student March and various chapters of Students for Justice in Palestine.”

Additionally, several hate messages, including anti-Semitic, anti-gay and racist graffiti were discovered in restrooms and a classroom on the campus of John Jay College last year.

Evan R. Bernstein, ADL New York regional director, said, “Over the past few years, students have expressed to us firsthand a growing concern over a climate of anti-Jewish animus on some” CUNY campuses. “We are also troubled by the manifestation of anti-Israel bias that has left some Jewish students feeling singled out.”

The formation of a task force composed of members of the administration, faculty and students is “an additional step that indicates that CUNY is taking these allegations seriously,” Bernstein said.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.