by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Harvard University plans to establish a task force to assist students whose names were publicized after singing public letters exclusively blaming Israel for the atrocities of the October 7 massacre.
Beginning November 3, the task force will offer services to students impacted by the fallout from affixing their names to the controversial statements, including guidance on how to handle online harassment and how to mute bothersome social-media accounts, the Harvard Crimson reported.
“We are truly grateful for all the tremendous work that students have put forth in supporting each other through this most difficult time, and we appreciate the collaborative spirit in which students, faculty, and staff have come together to repel this repugnant assault on our community,” Harvard’s dean of students Thomas Dunne wrote in an official statement on Tuesday.
On the day of the Hamas surprise invasion, which led to the deaths of well over 1,000 Israeli civilians, many of whom were tortured, executed, or beheaded, the college’s Undergraduate Palestine Solidarity Group published a statement holding “the Israeli regime entirely responsible for all unfolding violence.”
The statement made no reference to the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas.
“Today’s events did not occur in a vacuum,” the letter explained. “The apartheid regime is the only one to blame.” The note was signed by nearly three dozen other Harvard student groups and drew the condemnation of political and academic figures for its effort to justify terrorism.
In the subsequent days, at least ten student groups who originally signed the document withdrew their support as public pressure mounted. At one point, a billboard truck drove around campus highlighting signatories’ faces and names under the banned, “Harvard’s Leading Antisemites.”
“The silence from Harvard’s leadership, so far, coupled with a vocal and widely reported student groups’ statement blaming Israel solely, has allowed Harvard to appear at best neutral towards acts of terror against the Jewish state of Israel,” the school’s former president Larry Summers said following the joint student declaration.