Campus Reform OP-ED: Pro-Palestinian groups don’t respect free speech on campus

I’ve penned another column at Campus Reform. This week, it is centered around a video from Portland State University featuring MSA and SJP students denouncing a pro-Israel event hosted by the College Republicans.

Here’s an excerpt:

College is meant to be a place where free speech comes alive. Different viewpoints are supposed to be welcome and intellectual diversity celebrated.

For at least one loud minority on college campuses, however, the rights and the privileges afforded by the First Amendment only extend to those who share their exact beliefs.

Let me give you one recent example.

The College Republicans of Portland State University, hosted a viewing of the 2005 documentary film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West” only to leave after the pro-Palestinian group attempt a hostile takeover of the event.

Before the event began, pro-Palestinian activists attempted to route the event by storming the stage making loud announcements about a competing event in the hallway outside where students could “meet real Muslims.”

When the documentary ended things got worse. The “activists” yelled, shouted and attempted to pick fights with the organizers. The scene was reminiscent of feeding time at the zoo.

Continue reading at Campus Reform.

 

Times of Israel Column: Remembering the Dolphi Disco Terror Attack

In my first column at Times of Israel, I wrote about the 12th anniversary of the Dolphinarium discotheque suicide bomb attack in Tel Aviv. The attack left my cousin Simona Rudina (Rodin) and 20 other young Israelis dead.

Here’s an excerpt from my column:

This Saturday marks 12 years since the Dolphinarium discotheque suicide bomb attack in Tel Aviv, Israel.

On June 1, 2001, the Dolphinarium discotheque – once a popular nightclub frequented by young Israelis, especially Soviet émigrés – became center stage for one of the deadliest suicide terror attacks in Israel’s history. It occurred at the height of the Second Intifada and subsequently changed the course of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

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Suicide bomber Said Khutari, 22, came to the Dolphinarium discotheque with the intent of causing mass destruction. Reports allege Khutari taunted his victims before the attack. He then banged on a drum laced with explosives and ball bearings, and went on to blow himself up, kill 21 youngsters, and injure 132 club goers. He carried out the attack in the name of Islamic Jihad and had ties to Hamas.

One of Khutari’s victims was my cousin Simona Rudina (Rodin).

Continue reading at The Times of Israel.

 

My Thoughts on UCSD Passing Divestment in The Daily Caller

My alma mater – UC-San Diego – was center stage for the Arab-Israeli conflict last week after the Associated Students passed a divestment bill condemning Israel for “so-called human rights violations.” It was passed by a secret vote 20-2. (What every happened to transparency?)

Here are my thoughts in The Daily Caller:

Student government meetings are no place for parsing out the Arab-Israeli conflict, said one recent graduate.

“Universities shouldn’t become center stage for the Arab-Israeli conflict,” said Gabriella Hoffman, a 2012 UCSD graduate, in an email to The Daily Caller News Foundation. She added that passing divestment resolutions gives legitimacy to anti-Semitic viewpoints on campus.

During her time at the university, Hoffman worked to prevent the ASUCSD from approving such resolutions.

“Many pro-Israel and Jewish students and community members–including professors and activists–worked together to ensure that divestment wouldn’t pass,” she wrote. “As a result, they were always rejected.”

Sister campuses UC-Riverside and UC-Irvine also passed divestment bills in their respective student government bodies. Although defeated in previous years, the passage of divestment at the University of California is a very troubling trend in higher education.

UCSD still won’t be receiving any alumni money from me.

Rendezvous in Washington: 2013 Congressional Israel Allies Caucus Reception

I had the pleasure of attending the 2013 Congressional Israel Allies Caucus Reception on Capitol Hill last Monday night. Eytan Laor of American Principles PAC was very gracious to extend an invitation to me. The event is put on by Israel Allies Foundation.

I was joined by my friends Danielle Saul and Isaac Baskin, and ran into another friend and fellow Zionist Matthew Redmond of Georgetown University.

Over 25 members of Congress and 100 other guests were in attendance.  Two other prominent guests were Ambassador Barukh Binah, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Israel in Washington, and MK Rabbi Binyamin Elon, Founder of Israel Allies Foundation.

My friends and I had the opportunity to meet several esteemed members of Congress. We talked to Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC), Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), Rep. Ilean Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), and Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC).

31469_521340381244251_944251201_nWith Virginia Foxx

Israel Allies Caucus Reception 004With Joe Wilson

Israel Allies Caucus Reception 001With Renee Ellmers

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With Ileana Ros-Lehtinen

I’m always thankful to attend events like this. I’m proud to be a Zionist and am proud to do my part to bolster the U.S.-Israel relationship.

“We regard it as our duty to declare that Jewish Jerusalem is an organic and inseparable part of the State of Israel, as it is an inseparable part of the history of Israel, of the faith of Israel.” — David Ben-Gurion, Knesset speech, December 1949

Smart Girls Are Armed, Conservative, and Fabulous: My “Youth in Action” Interview

smart girl

Teen conservative and Smart Girl Politics activist Bethany Bowra (@bethanybowra) interviewed me for the latest installment of Smart Girl Politics’ “Youth in Action” series profiling young conservative female activists. Those of you who know me are familiar with my hold-no-prisoners approach to conservative politics, anti-Communist tendencies, and desire to lure in more young people to our movement.

I hope my thoughts and sentiments in this interview inspire other freedom-loving youngsters to speak out and reject collectivism. Without a doubt, we must encourage more young conservatives…especially young conservative females.

Enjoy!

While Planned Parenthood and Democrat women in Congress claim to speak for all women, these young women have something to say about that. Contrary to popular belief, those groups do not speak for all young women— many young women my age have views that are quite the opposite. Below is my interview with conservative activist, Gabriella Hoffman!

Why did you get involved in politics?

I got involved in conservative politics because of my parents. My mother and my father are Lithuanian immigrants who escaped from Soviet communism 27 years ago. The Left’s policies remind them too much of the Old Country, so conservatism came naturally to them. Their stories and perspective on life really brought me to conservatism. Both sides of my family suffered immensely in the former Soviet Union. I’m in this fight to honor their memories and remind people that freedom must be safeguarded for future generations to come.

How did you get involved?

In 2006 when I was 15, I started writing a column in a local Orange County, CA community paper, The Coto Voice, called “Teen Beat.” I maintained this column for three years. I primarily focused on topics ranging from volunteering in high school to upholding traditional values. After I graduated from high school and moved onto college, I began to write about politics for The California Review, the conservative paper at UC-San Diego. From there, I went onto running a YAF chapter and hosting David Horowitz on campus- an event which landed on national news. After the event garnered a lot of attention, I started working for The Rick Amato Show as an Executive Assistant and landed a coveted role at Eagle Forum of San Diego as the Director of Youth Outreach.  I also started blogging for various websites and publications.

What issues have you been focused on since you became active?

I’m a firm believer in sound conservatism (social and fiscal conservatism), and I also believe in strong national defense. During my time at UC-San Diego, I heavily focused on support for Israel (I have family there and support a healthy U.S.-Israel relationship) and exposing militant leftists on campus. I also exposed radical feminism and openly condemned the Vagina Monologues. Now, I concentrate on a plethora of issues ranging from traditional values to Israel advocacy to media/leftist/campus bias to free enterprise.

Continue reading at Smart Girl Politics Action.

Prager U Post on Why Israel Isn’t an Apartheid State

Good news: I will be guest blogging for Prager University.

In my first post, I debunked the claim that Israel is an “apartheid” state.

Below is the entire post, as found on the Prager University Facebook page:

By: Gabriella Hoffman, Contributor and College Senior

———————

This past week, my university – UC-San Diego – played host to “Israel Apartheid Week.” The Muslim Students Association (MSA) and Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) clubs unveiled an “apartheid” wall that displayed alleged human rights abuses in Israel. The wall—which can be found on college campuses—claims Israel oppresses non-Jews, commits genocide, and behaves like Nazi Germany. Moreover, the organizers of this week-long event invite notorious anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist speakers to advance their cause. Without a doubt, it’s the most hostile week on campus each school year.

Supporters of the Palestinian cause are keen to undermine the Jewish state by painting it as an “apartheid” state. While this comparison is illusory and illogical at best, it’s imperative to counter it with the truth.

The MSA’s and SJP’s use of the word “apartheid” is misleading and offensive, says the Vanguard Leadership Group – a coalition of black students that supports Israel’s right to exist and defend itself. In an article in IsraelNationalNews.com, the group said: “We request that you immediately stop referring to Israel as an apartheid society and to acknowledge that the Arab minority in Israel enjoys full citizenship with voting rights and representation in the government.” (http://bit.ly/KzS52w)

Additionally, if Israel were an apartheid state, Arabs wouldn’t hold the same rights as Jews and Christians. Arabs vote, practice their religion, hold office, and live peacefully in Israel much to the chagrin of the MSA and SJP.

Dennis Prager’s video about the subject further illustrates why Israel is not an apartheid state: http://bit.ly/n5c7YE

(Note: you can follow Ms. Hoffman on Twitter at @gabby_hoffman)

Follow Prager University @prageru and “Like” the Facebook page.

 

Conservatives and Zionists: Support Young Jewish Conservatives

I have a new article out in today’s edition of TheCollegeConservative entitled “Jews and Conservatism: An Interview with YJC President David Milstein.” In it, I write about conservatism and Jewish voters. More importantly, I interview David Milstein – a colleague and fellow conservative activist about Jews moving to the Right. Milstein is the president of Young Jewish Conservatives – a newly formed group that caters to young Jewish conservatives.

Many are unaware of this, but Young Jewish Conservatives’ co-founders reached out to me and asked for my advice during the first planning stages.  I willingly obliged and offered whatever suggestions I could give.  That being said, I fully support their efforts.

You see, like conservative activism, Israel advocacy is a cause near and dear to my heart. Many of my dad’s relatives live in Israel and several of my parents’ friends immigrated to Israel from Lithuania. I live vicariously through them and their stories about Israel. Although Israel-haters will accuse me of being an Israeli propagandist (my allegiance lies with America, silly knuckleheads), many will agree with me that it’s good to morally support Israel.  In fact, we should treat this ally of ours with the utmost respect…Paging the  Obama administration?

Although I’ve yet to experience the Holy Land (I fully dedicate my time to conservative politics, so my ability to travel is limited right now), I do plan to go and visit it one day. It’s a beautiful country full of wonder and rich history. All the pictures I’ve seen and stories I’ve heard point to this. I’ve read enough to understand why Israel is unique. You should visit if you get the chance.

People always ask me about my support for Israel. First and foremost, I support a healthy U.S.-Israel relationship. Israel is our only friend in the Middle East, and it has a lot in common with the United States. Second, I support Israel’s right to exist because it is the only democracy in the Middle East. Terrorists in Hamas and Hezbollah want to destroy this beacon of freedom in this hostile region. Call me crazy, but I have no sympathy for the “Palestinian” cause after one of its proponents and suicide bombers blew up my second cousin  and 20 other  young Russian Jews in the Tel Aviv Dolphinarium discotheque terrorist attack in June 2001. When these militants  personally get under your skin, you cannot forgive them.  End of story. And third, this affinity for Israel led me to bring David Horowitz to UCSD in May 2010. You can see the infamous clip that made national headlines here:

Like conservatism, Israel advocacy is something I will never compromise on. As someone with Jewish roots, I’m proud to support a group like Young Jewish Conservatives. People need to understand why it’s important for Jews to vote Republican and be conservative.

To learn more about YJC, please read my article:

  Jews and Conservatism: An Interview with YJC President David Milstein

American Jews are re-evaluating their support for President Obama and the Democrat Party.  Although Jewish voters historically gravitate to the American Left, there is a noticeable shift in their voting behavior of late.

What best explains this?

Many Jews are disgruntled with Obama’s poor treatment of Israel. In 2011, President Obama called for Israel to return to pre-1967 borders – a move criticized by many for suggesting Israel return to “indefensible ‘Auschwitz’ borders.” This sentiment was affirmed in NY-09’s special election to replace disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner – a contest in a heavily Jewish, pro-Israel district. Bob Turner campaigned as the pro-Israel candidate and later went on to defeat his Democrat challenger.

Israel is not the only issue concerning American Jews. Although Jews voted for Barack Obama over John McCain 78% to 21% in 2008, the American Jewish Committee’s 2011 survey of Jewish opinion revealed that many are abandoning Obama. Here is a summation of the survey’s findings: Jewish voters disapproved of Obama’s job performance 48% to 45%, disapproved of his handling of the economy 60% to 37%, disapproved of his handling of immigration 49% to 43%, and disapproved of his treatment of U.S.-Israel relations 53% to 40%.

Continue reading at TheCollegeConservative.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu Wishes Christians Merry Christmas

The Likud Party led by Benjamin Netanyahu wins...

Image via Wikipedia

The hawkish and equally revered Benjamin Netanyahu released a video wishing all Christians a Merry Christmas.

Although Israel maintains that it is a Jewish state, Christians and Muslims can equally practice their faiths there.

It is refreshing to hear someone of Netanyahu’s stature issue a message like this.

Don’t be a grinch this holiday season…say Merry Christmas!

 

New Freedom Center Video Confirms Obama Hates Israel

It is undeniable that President Obama is the most anti-Israel president in American history.

He has snubbed PM Benjamin Netanyahu on numerous occasions, called for Israel to return to pre-1967 borders, and recently referred to Jews as “Jew-janitors.”

It is imperative that come 2012, we elect a conservative Republican president that supports Israel, the Jewish people, and a healthy U.S.-Israel relationship.

Watch the video below and please share it with your friends.

H/T: David Horowitz Freedom Center

 

Ron Paul is wrong: Ahmadinejad’s Iran is armed and dangerous

My latest from the Washington Times Communities

Linked at Center for Strategic and International Studies on September 21, 2011.

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