UW-Milwaukee caved to anti-Israel activists

The university agreed to divest from certain Israeli connections and ‘join the countless calls’ for a ‘ceasefire in Gaza.’

One critic of the deal said: ‘The experience of antisemitism is being minimized and ignored because it looks different than other hate, and it’s allowed to flourish, even at UWM.’

Screenshot taken from X account of Evan Casey.

The University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee drew criticism for striking a deal with anti-Israel protestors that some have characterized as caving in to their demands. 

In a letter sent out May 12, university leaders thanked the anti-Israel student activists for meeting with them and praised what they called the “meaningful progress toward a peaceful resolution of the encampment.”

The university leaders expressed their commitment to “join the countless calls” for a “ceasefire in Gaza” and stated they “condemn the destruction of universities in Gaza.”

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The officials also stated that, per discussions with the demonstrators, the school would “review its study abroad policies and programs to ensure compliance with our Discriminatory Conduct Policy.”

UW-Milwaukee’s Water Council also ended its relationships with two Israeli water companies that were accused of “exacerbating water scarcity” for Palestinians. 

The UW-Milwaukee administration expressed a commitment to continue working with the pro-Palestinian activists in the future.

“We agree with you that removing the encampment should not be the end of our work together,” the letter explained. “After the encampment is removed, we propose a series of campus conversations and educational opportunities.”

Soon after the agreement, the university administration received criticism for being too conciliatory to the anti-Israel demonstrators.

On May 14, Jay Rothman, the President of the UW system, posted a statement to X decrying UW-Milwaukee’s agreement with the protestors: “I am disappointed by the course taken by UW-Milwaukee, and I am continuing to assess the decision-making process that led to this result.” 

The leader of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation, Miryam Rosenzweig, also expressed criticism of the deal: “We were shocked when last week, the chancellor came out and lauded the incredible learning opportunities and the spirit of community that he saw across the encampment without acknowledging that there’s an entire group who wasn’t part of that learning — who wasn’t part of those dialogues because students were forced to answer if they were Zionist or not before they entered the encampment.”

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“The experience of antisemitism is being minimized and ignored because it looks different than other hate, and it’s allowed to flourish, even at UWM,” she continued. 

Campus Reform has contacted the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee for comment. This article will be updated accordingly.