How many twins can one university have? If Goldsmiths SU passes all of the resolutions before it on conjoining in solidarity with another university it’ll have a hard time buying trousers.
Some would have Goldsmiths twin with a university in Palestine and have campaigned tirelessly for 18 months. Others would see Goldsmiths twin with an Israeli institution and have brought out the votes to defeat motions in the past. Both condemn the other for their solidarity, their morality (or lack of it), their inequity…
Both sides seek absolute right and the destruction of the other… A grotesque caricature of only the most extreme elements of the conflict on which they hope to have some bearing.
This is an excerpt from an email from the Goldsmiths SU Campaigns officer rallying the troops to turn out against a proposal which would twin ‘smiths with an Israeli university.
Our campaign does not in any way preclude making links with Israeli
students who want to work together towards an end to the occupation – this
is something that has already been discussed by activists in the campaign.
It is quite a different matter however to propose that we twin with an
Israeli University – as government funded and controlled institutions they
are actively complicit in discriminating against Palestinian students both
within the borders of Israel and in the occupied territories. If we
support an end to the Israeli government’s oppression of Palestine we can
have no basis for ‘twinning’ with such institutions.
There are further ways of spinning out that same rhetoric. For example… perhaps a Palestinian university might reject our twinning advances because ‘smiths is funded by a warmongering government…
This also reads very much like the language used for the proposed ‘boycott Israeli academics’ campaign of last year. Tar everyone with the same brush? Are ALL Israeli academics and students at ALL universities to be excluded?
Thankfully someone has taken the initiative and, powered by Facebook, there are hopes that an alternative motion **Twin Goldsmiths with BOTH a Palestinian and an Israeli University and promote PEACE!** will pass.
Which is good. As it might get both sides together over here first….