Harvard Crimson editors and law school administration tried to protect the identity of the Muslim student activist who was accused of insulting the Israeli Foreign Minister. But fellow students outed him in the many comments under this story, also reported in the Harvard Law Record. Notice Crimson headline calling it "perceived Anti-Semitism."
The event, titled “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the U.S.,” was a discussion between Livni and U.S. diplomat Dennis Ross co-sponsored by the Jewish Law Students Association and Harvard Hillel. During the question-and-answer session following the event, an unidentified student asked Livni, “How is it that you are so smelly?... A question about the odor of Ms. Tzipi Livni, she’s very smelly, and I was just wondering.”
The remark drew quick condemnation. Law School Dean Martha L. Minow sent an email to school affiliates on Tuesday denouncing the comment as inappropriate. “The comment was offensive and it violated the trust and respect we expect in our community. Many perceive it as anti-Semitic, and no one would see it as appropriate,” she wrote. “It was an embarrassment to this institution and an assault upon the values we seek to uphold.”
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By Wednesday, the remark had sparked controversy on the other side of the world, as several Israeli newspapers began covering the story. The Jerusalem Post published a story about the incident, and Hamodia—described as the “Daily Newspaper of Torah Jewry”—wrote that Livni had been “subjected to verbal abuse” at the Law School.
The backlash prompted the student who made the remark to publish an anonymous apology in The Record, denying that he intended his comments to be anti-Semitic and expressing regret for any harm he might have caused.
“I am writing to apologize, as sincerely as I can via this limited form of communication, to anyone who may have felt offended by the comments I made last week,” the student wrote. “I can see now… how my words could have been interpreted as a reference to an anti-Semitic stereotype, one that I was entirely unaware of prior to the publication of this article.”
Minow, Law Students Condemn Perceived Anti-Semitism
By CLAIRE E. PARKER,
April 21, 2016
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Tzipi Livni, Israeli Foreign Minister
By Jessica Chasmar
Thursday, April 21, 2016