February 18, 2024

Jared Kushner takes part in Harvard discussion on Israel-Hamas conflict despite antisemitism controversy

Former President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, himself an adherent of the Jewish faith, ventured to Harvard University's Kennedy School last week to discuss the ongoing conflict with Hamas, doing so despite the shattering degree of antisemitism that continues to plague the campus.

According to the Harvard Crimson, Kushner appeared at an event moderated by Tarek Masoud, director of the Kennedy School's Middle East Initiative, and his involvement in the discussion was interrupted at one point by pro-Palestinian protestors who declared him a “nepo-genocider.”

Kushner weighs in on recent events

A 2003 graduate of the school himself, Kushner told those in attendance that acknowledging a Palestinian state would, in his mind, equate to “supporting an act of terror perpetrated in Israel.”

He added that any move that would help establish a Palestinian state governed by Hamas would “reward” the most egregious acts of terrorism.

“Giving them a Palestinian state is basically a reinforcement of, 'We're going to reward you for bad actions. You have to show terrorists that they will not be tolerated, that we will take strong action,” Kushner added.

Kushner pointed a finger of blame at Palestinian leaders themselves for the devastating consequences of Israel's response to the attacks of Oct. 7.

“If you want to be pro-Palestinian, the best thing you can do is say, 'The people who have been holding these people back is their leadership,” he went on, leveling particular criticism against Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the State of Palestine and of the Palestinian National Authority.

The elephant in the room

During his appearance at the event, Kushner touched on the antisemitism crisis that has roiled Harvard in recent months, suggesting that in terms of fighting religious hatred, the school had “perhaps maybe lost its way a little bit” despite remaining, in his opinion, “a beacon of excellence.”

Republicans in Congress, however, are less inclined to such a charitable view, however, with members of the House Education and the Workforce Committee having just subpoenaed the university in regard to claims that it has obstructed its probe into rampant campus antisemitism, as ABC News reports.

Subpoenas were sent to Penny Pritzker, senior fellow of the Harvard Corporation, interim president Alan Garber, and N.P. Narvekar, Harvard Management Company CEO.

The committee accuses the recipients of failing to produce “priority documents” demanded as part of the probe, which began shortly after the panel heard testimony from then-Harvard president Claudine Gay, which was so damaging that it ultimately led to her ouster.

A new deadline of March 4 by which Harvard must comply with the documents request has been issued, but whether cooperation will indeed be forthcoming, only time will tell.

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