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Black Lives Matter and On-Campus Activism for Racial Justice
By Salma Khamis

Angela Davis, as featured in the “When I See Them I See Us” video produced by the Black-Palestinian Solidarity campaign. Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsdpg-9cmSw

This post is part one of a three-part series. To read part two, click here. To read part three, click here.

The US-Middle East Youth Network was designed to provide students across both the United States and the Middle East with the opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue on issues pertinent, not only to their respective regions, but also to the interaction that occurs between them. In doing so, USMEYN seeks to recognize the powerful potential that arises out of the intersection of three key factors: politically and socially conscious students from the Middle East and North Africa, their American counterparts, and the space and skills provided by university campuses across both regions to both sharpen and express this consciousness. I pride myself in being affiliated with a platform that creates a space for the intersection of all three of these factors and that yields impactful, transnational dialogue in return.

As important as the facilitation of this dialogue has been, however, it has prompted me to reflect on what the intersection of these three factors would look like on the ground. If there really is much to be gained from university students’ cooperation across both regions, why have we yet to see this take shape in a tangible way? What would this cooperation even look like? What possible results can we expect to see from its fruition? Is there really much to “cooperate” on in the first place? By narrowing my focus onto two specific student movements, I argue that there is much to be gained from the cooperation of both U.S. and Middle East oriented student activists. Not only is my contention supported by the historical precedence of transnational activism between the two regions, but also by the commonality between their respective goals and tactics for bringing about sociopolitical reform.

Black Lives Matter and On-Campus Activism for Racial Justice:

One of the main issues defining the nature of contemporary student activism on university campuses has been the Black Lives Matter movement. Founded in 2012 following the acquittal of George Zimmerman for his murder of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, the Black Lives Matter movement was assembled to combat the dehumanization of Black lives throughout American society. Be that through the deliberate mass incarceration of Black bodies, the racial discrimination rampant throughout American political and social discourse, or the discriminatory provision of social services across racially segregated communities in the U.S.; the Black Lives Matter movement assembled to call attention to the persisting legacy of slavery, how it continues to affect Black individuals and communities throughout the United States, and the myth that is a post-racial American society.

On-campus activism has been central to the movement. Just as colleges formed the bulwark of progressive activism in the Civil Rights Movement, the Anti-Vietnam War Movement, and the South African Apartheid Movement, so too have they returned with a vengeance as outlets of sociopolitical activism. Particularly following the incidents at the University of Missouri in October of 2015, student groups across the United States have been mobilizing in an effort to protest an array of racially discriminatory practices on their respective campuses. Especially given the fate of former University of Missouri President Tom Wolfe, students have been emboldened by the possibility of enacting tangible reform at their own institutions. Open, unapologetic dialogue about issues of racial justice has surfaced and, yes, despite the occasional superficiality of university administrations’ responses to this new environment of dialogue and action, the value of even breaching these issues in lecture halls and on-campus events, protests, and publications cannot be overstated.

With that said, however, not all student groups working for racial justice on campus are limiting their purview to the systematic racism prevalent throughout their own universities. Student activists are also mobilizing to address the system of endemic racial oppression as it functions on the national stage, taking up issues like prison reform and police brutality and thus situating themselves, and their activism, within the larger national debate on racial justice in America. As impactful and symbolic as the inclusion of college students is in this national conversation, however, it goes without saying that little can be done to address issues of racial justice that play out in the larger and more complex national context through on-campus protests alone. The question thus emerges: what can politically and socially conscious university students do to bridge the ‘impact gap’ that exists between university campuses and national policy reform? That is, how can the impact of these students’ activism be directed towards the dismantlement of nationwide systems of racial oppression and injustice?

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By Benjamin Lutz

The courtyard of the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque. The dome is embossed in gold. Source: Benjamin Lutz

Oman is one of those countries that frequently remains under the radar in terms of international news, a position Oman is happy to be in. However, once you begin to actively research this stable and flourishing Gulf monarchy, you will uncover this best-kept secret of the Middle East. One of the most remarkable aspects of the country is how the state religion, Islam, is practiced. A majority of Omanis practice Ibadism, a tradition within of Islam that predates both the Sunni and Shia traditions. Apart from a community in Zanzibar (an area of modern Tanzania that used to be part of Oman) and a few small parts of North Africa, Ibadism is a majority tradition only in Oman. Partly due to its small following, Ibadism is very tolerant of other faith traditions.

Source: Diarmuid Shiel
Source: Diarmuid Shiel

This tolerance is incredibly apparent in Oman, as approximately 1.5 million of Oman’s 3.5 million population are expats. Expats practice a variety of religions including Islam, Christianity, and Hinduism. In Muscat alone, there are two Christian compounds (each with a Protestant, Orthodox and Catholic Church) and two large Hindu temples. The Sultan and government of Oman protect these religious spaces and are open to building more if the religious communities grow. In addition, the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, the main mosque in Oman, is open to non-Muslims to visit. Few mosques allow non-Muslims to walk inside the prayer halls, but Oman encourages it. In addition, the architecture of the mosque includes Ibadi, Sunni, and Shia styles, further highlighting Oman’s commitment to religious plurality within Islam as well as throughout other faith traditions. Additionally, Omani law forbids public proselytization and attempts to convert members of one sect or religion to another, demonstrating the country’s commitment to religious plurality and coexistence. This law strives to prevent radicalization and intolerance between religions. Throughout Oman there is total freedom of thought and belief; the Ministry of Awqaf (Endowments) and Religious Affairs protects the rights of all religious communities. Carefully monitoring religious sermons and other messages is another way the Omani government can ensure extremism is not taught though religious ideologies.

Oman’s active role in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Arab League as well as many international trade, human rights, and labor organizations, demonstrates its commitment to fair religious practice. Many migrants practice Hinduism, which uses icons as a part of its worshiping ritual, a serious sin in Islam. However, they live side by side Muslim communities in peace due to Sultan Qaboos’s insistence on protection for their faith traditions and place of worship. In many other parts of the world, Muslims and Hindus do not live side by side peacefully due to the differences in their religious beliefs. Instead, the two communities flourish in Oman, encapsulating this ideal of coexistence.

The Al-Amana Centre. Source: Benjamin Lutz
The Al-Amana Centre. Source: Benjamin Lutz

All of these religious communities living next to each other in a majority Ibadi society proves that peace is possible wherever interfaith communities may be. Continuing the peace process is just as important and one of the best examples of an organization that does this is the Al Amana Centre. Starting in 1893 as a medical and educational venture from the Reformed Church of America, the Centre morphed in the 1970s into an organization that began teaching how interfaith communities within Oman coexist. Now they facilitate study abroad programs in Muslim-Christian Relations, advises the UN from its sister organization in New York, hosts scriptural readings from Jewish, Christian, and Muslim texts, coordinates with the Omani government on projects, and contributes academic articles about interfaith, religion, and globalization.

‘Deal with people how they are, not how we perceive them to be: this is the basis of a shared humanity.’ This phrase very well reflects Oman’s attitude towards the many religious communities that live together harmoniously in the world’s only Ibadi-majority country.

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By Salma Khamis

Egyptian students at a school in Giza. Courtesy of Mail & Guardian Africa.

To be completely honest, as an Egyptian, I dread the passing of every January since the now notoriously tragic uprising in 2011. I dread the publication of article upon article either commemorating or denouncing the January 25 movement, and yet am simultaneously aware of the obligation I have to read them all. Dissecting each and every headline, I struggle to locate my position within the whirlpool of misfortune that has thus far characterized Egypt’s road to democracy which, once brightly lit with the inspirational slogans of January 25 and its passionate and youthful liberal activists, now appears to have drifted off the beaten path towards a heartbreaking dead-end.

February 11, 2011 brought with it an indescribable sense of jubilant victory. As the now infamous Al-Ahram headline read, then-president Hosni Mubarak’s deposal really made it seem like “The People Overthrew the Regime.” Unbeknownst to the majority of the movement’s participants, however, they had not in fact overthrown the regime – but merely removed its figurehead. Clientelism, corruption, and insurmountably rigid sociopolitical hierarchies remain very much ingrained in the very fabric of the Egyptian system and suffice it to say that, as inspirational as the January 25 uprising was, it failed to disband these age-old structures. The story of what has unfolded since need not be retold. Sifting through any one of the myriad international news agencies’ websites on January 25 of this year yielded a plethora of articles by activists, pundits, and academics retelling the past five years’ narrative and reflecting on the lessons learned from the uprising.

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Front page of prominent pro-government newspaper, Al-Ahram, on February 12th, 2011. Headline reads: ‘The People Have Overthrown the Regime.’ Courtesy of The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Similarly unsurprising, however, is the marked absence of a comparable narrative in local Egyptian media outlets. To be clear, the Egyptian journalism industry is notoriously biased and rarely yields examples of journalistic integrity. That said, however, it is still worth considering the narrative circulating within Egypt’s borders about the undeniably unprecedented uprising that took place five years ago within Egypt’s borders. One could argue that it is that which is being talked about locally, and the way in which it is talked about, that matters most. As eloquent as the Huffington Post’s or the New York Times’ writers may be, they contribute little towards the mass formation, or deformation, of domestic attitudes and reactions to the presiding sociopolitical order in Egypt.

Who is saying what at home?

Having considered the language emerging from a number of Egypt’s most prominent news outlets, it appears as though there are two fundamentally orienting narratives defining that which is written with respect to the January 25th protest movement. On the one hand, we have a series of articles premised on the movement’s overwhelming success. These articles are generally geared towards highlighting how President Abd el Fattah el Sisi is leading the country towards the democratic and egalitarian dream that the January 25 movement sought to pursue. On the other hand, an equally inaccurate narrative focuses on the movement’s detrimental effect on the country, pointing to the social and economic deterioration that has since occurred as justification for why the date shouldn’t even be celebrated as the movement’s anniversary, but rather recognized for having originally been National Police Day. Although similarly bent on asserting how Sisi is leading the country out of the mess it apparently willingly put itself in, this narrative is comparatively more focused on demonizing the youth protest movement as well as Islamist factions such as the Muslim Brotherhood as the reasons behind the past five years’ unrest.

It’s safe to say that both narratives, either that of the movement’s overwhelming success or failure, do little towards inspiring any tangible, positive change in Egypt. In either case, pundits are concerned with the memory of January 25, not its undeniably ongoing reality. As much as most would hate to admit, little has changed since the movement’s first slogans were uttered five years ago this month. If anything, President Sisi’s regime has brought with it increased police brutality; heightened surveillance of opposition groups; increasingly limited avenues for public expression; ever-widening socioeconomic gaps; pitiful progress towards gender equality; and thinly-veiled prospects of increased political representation that serve only to once again concentrate political power in the hands of a very rich, albeit very incompetent, few.

However, the fact that Sisi’s regime is authoritarian, bureaucratic, and astoundingly oppressive in nature is nothing new. What has yet to be aptly considered, however; is how to bring about tangible sociopolitical change within the presiding system – short of overhauling it altogether and finding ourselves back where we started five years ago. For, somewhere in between the polarities of either calling for the third mass uprising in five years on one side, or hailing the current system’s achievements on the other, there lies today’s undeniable reality: an incoming generation of increasingly marginalized, disillusioned, and under-educated youth who face sky-high unemployment rates and a weak, if not non-existent, social safety net to shelter them from abject poverty and the myriad social ills that accompany it.

Consider the following, for example: according to figures from the United Nations’ Development Program, Egypt’s adult literacy rate remains stuck at 73.9%. Enrollment in tertiary-level education is a meager 30.1% and, at the primary school level, the ratio of pupils to teachers is a staggering 27.7:1. In contrast, consider the fact that Egypt’s neighbor, Jordan, enjoys a 97.9% adult literacy rate and a 46.6% level of enrollment in tertiary education. Moving further eastwards, 69.4% of Turkey’s population is or has been enrolled in tertiary education and each of the country’s primary school teachers bears the responsibility of 7 less pupils than had they taught in Egypt, with a Turkish pupil to teacher ratio of 20.1:1.

“The air we breathe and the water we drink”:

Egypt’s first-ever Nobel Prize laureate, celebrated author, intellectual, and former Minister of Education, Taha Hussein, referred to the importance of education as comparable to “the air we breathe and the water we drink.” As pertinent now as it was when Hussein first proclaimed it so in 1950, the only way to ensure the development of Egypt’s upcoming generation is not hindered by the shackles presented by the prevailing political environment is to guarantee their access to high-quality, affordable, education. As heartbreaking as it is for my inner revolutionary to admit, gone is the age of effective mass revolt in Egypt, at least for the time being. Neither the economy, nor the political establishment, will be able to stomach yet another tumultuous period of instability in favor of a successful democratic transition. That doesn’t mean, however, the complete impossibility of enacting tangible sociopolitical reform, the likes of which can only be feasibly sought through a complete reformation of the current educational system.

Precisely, the first point of concern should be the complete reconsideration of nationally-sanctioned curricula, particularly at the primary and secondary levels of education. Studies have long proven the inefficacy of curricula based primarily on memorization, and yet such is the content of the present-day Egyptian education system. Overly exhaustive and inefficient curricula focused on the needless regurgitation of contextually irrelevant and politically informed information should be replaced with material more attune to the demands presented by the labor market, especially as the government reportedly seeks to reorient the labor force more towards the tertiary sector in the hopes of stimulating economic development.

Furthermore, the highly centralized and bureaucratic system with which academic deans are appointed to their positions in pubic universities by the President should be disbanded so as to fully depoliticize the educational domain from its political counterpart. It is unrealistic to demand impartiality from government-appointed faculty deans, whose job security rests primarily on their ability to indulge the powers that be and their politically motivated social policies.

Important, too, is the stringent enforcement of student attendance, not just enrollment – particularly at the primary and secondary levels of education. Although, for example, official sources cite the level of primary school enrollment to be somewhere in the neighborhood of 95%, an overwhelming majority of primary schools simultaneously feature over 80% illiteracy rates due in part to the effect of meager student attendance rates. Moreover, the transition from primary to secondary education is thus made all the more difficult as a large amount of secondary school students drop out in their first year, having barely attended primary school and therefore graduated to the next level with inaccurate or falsified credentials.

The prioritization of teacher training and reimbursement need also be considered pivotal to the overall reformation of the Egyptian educational system. In a country with over one million teachers, the way in which the Ministry of Education and their own Teacher’s Union treats them is deplorable to say the least. From as early as 2005, teachers have been striking regularly to demand increased pay and fringe benefits as they face an average class size at the primary school level of 43 students. In addition, with adequate training and governmental oversight, one would hope to see an end to the almost regular flow of headlines regarding the endemic level of child abuse taking place in Egypt’s public school system.

The above is but the tip of the iceberg in terms of what Egypt’s educational system needs to undergo so as to yield a motivated and well-informed generation capable of contributing positively and productively to the country’s political, social, and economic development. Just as there have been two equally destructive narratives surrounding the January 25 movement circulating throughout domestic media outlets, there too exists two equally valid forms of revolution, both armed with the potential to succeed, depending on the presiding context within which they are pursued. The insurgent revolution is that which we have already attempted, and largely failed at, in Egypt. Grassroots public uprisings that seek to return the power thus far concentrated on the inside of the system to the hands of the people on the outside of the system. Alternatively, the more gradual process of revolutionizing the consciousness of upcoming generations can be sought through granting them the invaluable gift of knowledge and the depoliticized spaces in which to engage in its pursuit. This, I believe, is the only option left to enact any kind of tangible change in Egypt, from the inside, out.

At the risk of echoing the clichéd sentiments of many a commentator before me, I nevertheless close with the following: The January 25 uprising did indeed fail to realize its political goals. However, coming to terms with this failure and harnessing the spirit of the movement’s initial inception to pursue change from within the presiding system is the surest way to ensure that, for the thousands upon thousands of martyrs who died dreaming of a better future for themselves, we can at least seek to guarantee it for their children.

By Benjamin Jury

Syrian refugee Mahmoud shown in the underground shelter where he and his family live in El Akbiya, Lebanon, 2013. He shares a tiny room measuring 2.5m x 3.5 metres with his parents and eight siblings. Source: UNHCR/S. Baldwin

When it comes to reporting on the Middle East, the Islamic State has quite literally become the new black. While hundreds of articles flood our Twitter feeds and morning e-mail brief dissecting every inch of the rebel group’s anatomy, readers simply cannot get enough about ISIS, leading to some rather bizarre headlines. The fifth year of the Syrian Civil War rages on, the Houthis continue their occupation of Yemen, and hundreds of migrant workers have died building the World Cup stadium in Qatar amount to footnotes in most major news networks’ Middle East coverage in the United States. Instead, we run endless counterfactual scenarios, playing “Choose Your Own Nuke Deal Adventure” and wondering what Israel could accomplish with Isaac Herzog at the helm.

Indeed, the situation in Syria appears more and more grim every day, with millions still in refugee camps with no hope to return to their homes in the foreseeable future. Just yesterday, Syria’s state news agency boasted that an American drone had been shot down near Latakia. President Bashar al-Assad continues his barrel bombing campaign on rebel-held Syrian cities and children like Mamoud suffer everyday from the lack of stability. In the United States, we maintained near radio silence until someone dropped the “drone” buzzword.

In Yemen, the situation has gone from chaotic to catastrophic. The Pentagon announced yesterday that they believe $500 million worth of weapons and equipment given to government forces have been compromised by either the Houthi occupation forces in the north or al-Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula in the south. The evacuation of US embassies in Yemen, too, is deeply troubling considering the growing conception of the crisis there as an escalation of the Saudi-Iran proxy war.

Qatar has its own set of domestic problems slowing spilling onto global news radars. The conditions for migrant workers, many of them South Asian, building the stadiums for the 2022 World Cup are appalling. According to Qatar’s commissioned DLA Piper investigation, hundreds have died since the beginning of construction while working long hours at temperatures up to 50°C (122°F). Labor law reform, while promised, has been dismally slow.

There are no feature articles on these issues. Instead, we read page after page of “What ISIS Really Wants”, hoping to ‘get inside their heads’ and understand their agenda.

Without unbiased, well-rounded coverage of the Middle East, the United States faces a perpetuation of the same dangerous stereotypes of Islam, the people of the Middle East, and the instability of the Middle East that encourages the occupation of war-torn countries and continued unrest.

No news agency, writer, or blog will ever be able to package and deliver the current events of every region of the Middle East. Those who disseminate ‘hard news’ and op-eds do, however, need to search beyond the hot topics and deliver content that needs to be heard, our own blog included. Let’s work together to make uncovering the truth the new, new black. Until then, I think I’ll just keep tweeting about Macklemore joining ISIS.

By Annabelle Timsit

Prime Minister Netanyahu concludes his third address before a joint meeting of Congress. Source: Caleb Smith

Much like the snowpocalypse that was supposed to hit Washington a few weeks ago, Bibi’s speech to Congress came and went, but had very little overall effect. Far from the cosmic seizure some predicted in US-Israeli relations and bipartisan relations in Congress, Mr. Netanyahu’s speech came off as a skilled orator’s very successful use of the world’s best reelection platform, namely the United States Congress, rather than as an earth-shattering attempt to change the course of the Iran nuclear peace talks. The speech boiled down to some admittedly scary predictions of a nuclear Iran, a religious warning not to ignore the past, and some very complimentary remarks towards the ever-enduring US-Israeli relations, but with very little substance. That doesn’t mean it was a bad political move, however.

The main criticism leveraged against his speech was the lack of content or of any substantial alternative to talks with Iran. Short of calling it a “very bad deal” and warning the Congressmen and women of the dangers of a nuclear-armed Ayatollah (whom he equated with the Nazi regime of WWII), he didn’t offer any options other than maintaining nuclear restrictions on Iran until it stopped promoting terrorism, trying to annihilate Israel, and attacking its neighbors in the Middle East. This begs the question: if nuclear restrictions could stop Iran from doing these things at any given point in time, why are we still in this dire situation?

Another criticism levied against him was his use of Congress as a reelection platform. It is no secret that Prime Minister Netanyahu faces a tough reelection campaign at home. Some (including the leader of the Labor opposition, Isaac Herzog) have criticized him for using the Republicans’ invitation to speak before Congress to showcase his tough stance on security and his good relations with the US administration. In all fairness, however, the line is often blurred when an incumbent faces a reelection. Where do official duties end and campaigning speeches begin?

Those who expected anything different were naïve at best and ignorant at worst. If Israel had a viable solution to the problem of a nuclear-armed Iran, it would have presented it to the P5 +1 nations (or had the US present it for them) a long time ago. If Netanyahu came to the US to boost his reelection campaign, then the images of his standing ovation in Congress will indeed accomplish just that; he can go home and reward his PR team. Those, like House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who found his speech “condescending” because of its lack of respect for US intelligence, are grasping at straws to criticize him without appearing to do so. As Rep. Brad Sherman (D-California) said after the event, “Every speech contains passages which remind the audience of facts they already know, and conclusions with which they already agree…That is not condescension; that is oratory.”

The Israeli prime minister will now wait and see if his rhetoric scared enough Congress members to override a presidential veto of legislation which would beef up sanctions against Iran should it fail to sign an agreement. Obama previously warned that any such legislation could kill the talks. Bibi’s clear lobbying efforts for just that outcome will certainly weaken an already fragile relationship with the Obama administration. With President Obama’s term ending in a year, it wasn’t very likely he could have exerted enough influence to prevent Bibi from accepting the Republicans’ invitation in the first place.

The speech caused some bruised egos, as its boycott from close to 60 Democrats in Congress showed, and it definitely caused a rift in the relations between the direct Israeli and American leadership for now. Apart from the “near tears” of Nancy Pelosi and the fact that Obama will probably be cheering for the other side on March 17th, however, Bibi’s speech accomplished little and changed nothing.

By Olivia Daniels

Following the attacks on Jews living in European countries, most recently the terror attacks in Copenhagen, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for a mass emigration of Jews from Europe. Netanyahu said, “Jews have been murdered again on soil only because they were Jews,” reiterating, “Of course, Jews deserve protection in every country, but we say to Jews, to our brothers and sisters: Israel is your home”.

This comment left European leaders extremely defensive, French President Francois Hollande telling French Jews, “I will not just let what was said in Israel pass, leading people to believe that Jews no longer have a place in Europe and in France in particular,” while French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said, “A Jew who leaves France is a piece of France that is gone”. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also commented, “We are glad and thankful that there is Jewish life in Germany again,” and, “we would like to continue living well together with the Jews who are in Germany today”. Denmark’s Chief Rabbi Jair Melchior told the Associated Press, “People from Denmark move to Israel because they love Israel, because of Zionism, but not because of terrorism,” and insightfully, “if the way we deal with terror is to run somewhere else, we should all run to a desert island.”

The director of the European Jewish Association, Rabbi Menachim Margolin, is using the tragedy in Copenhagen as means for a change in gun licensing laws to allow Jews to carry weapons in Europe. Margolin said, “When I pick up my son at the synagogue I want to make sure that he is there and he is alive…it is a very basic request”. Despite his loss of faith, Margolin also criticized Netanyahu’s call, explaining, “Netanyahu is basically saying ‘we have no way to protect you where you are’”.

europe des island2The problem is not that Netanyahu wants Jews to come to Israel: the state was built on immigration and its survival has always been contingent on Jews coming and staying. The issue is that the prime minister is insinuating that Jews are not safe anywhere but in Israel, which places a stigma on both European countries and European Jews: Jews are not welcome in Europe, and they will not be safe unless they leave. Even Shimon Peres, former Israeli president and prime minister, retorted, telling the Times of Israel, “Don’t come to Israel because of a political position, but because you want to come and live in Israel…Israel must remain a land of hope and not a land of fear”.

According to the Law of Return, any Jewish person can become an Israeli citizen, so long as they pose no threat to the state or the people. In 1970, the law was amended to include citizenship for non-Jewish immediate family members. Thus, it is relatively simple for any Jew with the will and the means to become an Israeli citizen. In the first quarter of 2014, Jewish immigration to Israel increased by 50 percent, 93 percent of which was from Western Europe and Ukraine. In all of 2014, more than 7,000 Jews immigrated to Israel from France, which was twice as many than in 2013. The January attacks in Paris left Israel expecting another increase. Around 8,000 Jews live in Denmark today and despite recent events, they have been asked to stay in their home country with the promise of protection. The Danish-born terrorist that killed two people in Copenhagen was shot and killed by police on Sunday, allowing the Danish people to feel a moment of relief.

Jews should feel safe in today’s world, and they should not have to relocate to Israel for that to become a reality. One cannot ask anyone to stay somewhere they feel threatened, so it is up to those European leaders to uphold their promises of inclusion and protection.

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