A flurry of Harvard University students and groups are desperately trying to backtrack on their support of a letter blaming Israel for the mass slaughter of its own people by Hamas terrorists — as some business titans seek to blacklist them from future jobs.
Four of the initial 34 student organizations attached to the inflammatory statement have already withdrawn their support — while board members of other groups have quit to distance themselves.
Late Tuesday, 17 other Harvard groups joined around 500 faculty and staff and 3,000 others in signing a counter-statement attacking the other groups’ letter as “completely wrong and deeply offensive,” according to the campus paper, the Harvard Crimson.
A third letter from nearly 160 faculty members also ripped Harvard’s response to the scandal, writing that it “can be seen as nothing less than condoning the mass murder of civilians based only on their nationality.”
Others in groups supporting the initial letter — which held “the Israeli regime entirely responsible for all unfolding violence” — quit while distancing themselves from any involvement.
“As a board member of a Harvard group that signed the statement on Israel, I think it was egregious and have resigned from my role,” Danielle Mikaelian tweeted Monday.
“I am sorry for the pain this caused,” the law student continued. “My organization did not have a formal process, and I didn’t even see the statement until we had signed on.”
Mikaelian added that she “prevented another student group I remain on the board of from signing on when I saw the statement.
“This statement is not representative of my values, and my heart is with those impacted.”
“I also want to make it clear that I know firsthand some of my fellow students are in this situation too,” Mikaelian wrote, noting: “I wasn’t the only board member who stepped down today.”
Law student Mohini Tangri also tweeted that “many members had no say in whether their [organizations] signed” the letter.
“Many weren’t even notified that their [organizations] were considering doing so,” she claimed.
A number of student organizations have also put out statements in recent days announcing that they are rescinding their signatures from the controversial statement.
In a statement posted to Instagram, Harvard Ghungroo said it “would like to formally apologize for co-signing the statement made by the Harvard Palestinian Committee and have formally retracted our signature.
“We would like to clarify that we stand in solidarity with both Israeli and Palestinian victims and families,” the group wrote.
“Harvard Undergraduate Ghungroo strictly denounces and condemns the massacre propagated by the terrorist organization Hamas. We truly apologize for the insensitivity of the statement that was released recently.
The Harvard Undergraduate Nepali Student Association also released a statement on Instagram expressing “regret” at signing the letter that “has been interpreted as a tacit support for the recent violent attacks in Israel.
“We deplore the attacks that have taken the lives of hundreds of innocent civilians, including 10 Nepali students in Israel,” the student organization continued.
“To ensure that our stance on the condemnation of violence by Hamas and support for a just peace remains clear, we retract our signature from the statement,” it concluded.
Harvard College Act on a Dream told the student paper that it only signed as “a result of miscommunication and a lack of due diligence.”
“The endorsement of [the] statement in no way reflects their individual opinions about the ensuing violence in Palestine and Israel.”
The statement released by the Harvard Palestinian Committee no longer lists the more than 30 student groups that had originally signed on to the statement, but rather says: “This statement was co-authored by a coalition of Palestine solidarity groups at Harvard.
“For student safety, the names of all original signing organizations have been concealed at this time.”
But the student organizations only seemed to have released their statements after billionaire hedge fund manager Bill Ackman called for the university to release the names of the students in these groups so that they will not be hired by Wall Street.
“I have been asked by a number of CEOs if Harvard would release a list of the members of each of the Harvard organizations that have issued the letter assigning sole responsibility for Hamas’ heinous acts to Israel, so as to insure that none of us inadvertently hire any of their members,” Ackman, the billionaire founder of hedge fund giant Pershing Square Capital Management, wrote on his X social media account on Tuesday.
“If, in fact, their members support the letter they have released, the names of the signatories should be made public so their views are publicly known.”
Ackman, a Harvard grad who has a net worth of $3.5 billion, added: “One should not be able to hide behind a corporate shield when issuing statements supporting the actions of terrorists, who, we now learn, have beheaded babies, among other inconceivably despicable acts.”
As the backlash raged, Harvard president Claudine Gay released a statement Tuesday saying: “Let there be no doubt that I condemn the terrorist atrocities perpetrated by Hamas.
“Such inhumanity is abhorrent, whatever one’s individual views of the origins of longstanding conflicts in the region.
“Let me also state, on this matter as on others, that while our students have the right to speak for themselves, no student group — not even 30 student groups — speaks for Harvard University or its leadership.
“We will all be well served in such a difficult moment by rhetoric that aims to illuminate and not inflame. And I appeal to all of us in this community of learning to keep this in mind as our conversations continue.”
@CharlieKirk11 on (X):
“In February 2020, Harvard Business School got its largest ever gift, $200 million, from Leonard Blavatnik, a Ukrainian Jew. Bill Ackman, of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, has given tens of millions to Harvard. There are thousands of others like them. Jews are some of the most generous funders of America’s universities, from Harvard to NYU to Stanford to Ohio State. Liberal Jews also donated massively to BLM. Wake up American Jews! Stop subsidizing your own demise by supporting institutions that breed Anti-Semites and endorse genocidal killers”.
In February 2020, Harvard Business School got its largest ever gift, $200 million, from Leonard Blavatnik, a Ukrainian Jew.
Bill Ackman, of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, has given tens of millions to Harvard.
There are thousands of others like them. Jews are some of the most…
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) October 11, 2023
Hamas's atrocities on Saturday was the largest one-day mass murder of Jews since the Holocaust.
Yet groups are supporting Hamas’s crimes by marching in the streets the streets and at “elite” institutions.
31 Harvard student organizations have come out in support of the… pic.twitter.com/TQc8AUeqTm
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) October 11, 2023