California Community College Student Delivers Anti-Semitic Remarks About Israel At Graduation Speech


James Lynch Contributor
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A community college student in California dedicated parts of her Friday graduation speech to making anti-semitic statements about Israel’s alleged treatment of Palestinians.

El Camino community college student Jana Abulaban alleged Israel is “killing and torturing Palestinians as we speak” in the middle of her speech, per the New York Post. “I gift my graduation to all Palestinians who have lost their life and those who continue to lose their lives every day due to the oppressive apartheid state of Israel killing and torturing Palestinians as we speak,” she said.

Abulaban told the New York Post she was “inspired” by a City University of New York (CUNY) Law School student who delivered an anti-semitic speech about Israel and “white supremacy” in late May. “And I honestly feel inspired by her courage to speak up. We are only trying to speak up against what this oppressive government is doing,” she said.

She is the descendant of Palestinian refugees and “identifies as a Palestinian woman,” her school newspaper wrote. She was born in Jordan and emigrated to the U.S. at age 12. (RELATED: Universities Are Seeing An Enormous Spike In Antisemitism. Here’s Why)

El Camino touted Abulaban’s speech on Twitter on Friday and posted a picture of her speaking. “If I was told 7 years ago, as a Palestinian refugee stepping foot for the first time in this country, that one day I’ll be standing on this stage — I would not have believed it. I’m extremely thankful to have gotten to this point,” the tweet said.

The group StopAntisemitism called out Abulaban’s rhetoric in a tweet Sunday with a clip of the speech. “Yet another graduation speech is hijacked with false antisemitic rhetoric, this time at El Camino Community College, CA,” the tweet asserted.

The student dismissed allegations of anti-semitism caused by her graduation speech. “I felt the need to really shed light on the atrocities that Israel as an apartheid state is committing,” she told the New York Post. “This is very far away from being antisemitic. I would never disrespect a religion,” she added.

Claims of Israeli apartheid have been labeled anti-semitic by the European Union and disputed by the Anti-Defamation League, a leading Jewish organization. A report by Amnesty International accusing Israel of apartheid towards Palestinians was widely denounced by Jewish groups, and subject to criticism from the U.S. State Department and other western nations.