Stanford President Richard Saller and Provost Jenny Martinez condemned the Hamas assault on Israel in a joint assertion despatched to the Stanford neighborhood Wednesday night.
“As an ethical matter, we condemn all terrorism and mass atrocities,” they wrote. “This contains the deliberate assault on civilians this weekend by Hamas.” Palestinian militant group Hamas led a shock assault on Israel Saturday that killed over 1,000 civilians, in line with Israeli officers.
Israel, which has formally declared conflict, retaliated with airstrikes and ordered a siege of the Gaza strip, which was already blockaded by Israel and Egypt.
With greater than 1,200 deaths in Israel and roughly 1,055 in Gaza as of Wednesday, the demise toll within the Israeli-Palestine battle is now on the highest annual fatalities since 2014.
The assertion to the campus neighborhood aimed to “suppor[t] the members of our Stanford neighborhood on this troublesome second.”
Responding to issues of harassment towards Jewish and Palestinian college students, Saller and Martinez wrote, “We wish to clarify that Stanford stands unequivocally in opposition to hatred on the premise of faith, race, ethnicity, nationwide origin and different classes.”
The assertion comes after a letter signed by dozens of college was despatched to College administration on Tuesday, calling on Stanford to “voice its unambiguous condemnation of the horrifying actions taken by Hamas these previous few days.” The letter wrote that the College’s “lack of applicable response” was “deeply troubling.”
Vice Provost for Scholar Affairs Susie Brubaker-Cole and Spiritual and Non secular Life Dean Tiffany Steinwert beforehand despatched a press release on Monday, which shared sources obtainable to college students in want of assist and reiterated Stanford’s coverage of nonpartisan positions. It additionally affirmed that college students’ constitutionally-protected speech shall be upheld except it violates campus coverage, in response to “banners in regards to the disaster in Israel and Palestine that appeared outdoors campus buildings over the weekend.”
Saller and Martinez echoed the earlier assertion on Wednesday. “We’ve got obtained complaints about banners, indicators and chalking on campus that categorical views that many discover offensive,” they wrote. “It is very important do not forget that controversial and even offensive speech is allowed besides when it crosses the road into sure unlawful classes resembling threats or harassment for which the edge is kind of excessive.”
The brand new assertion reiterated Stanford’s institutional coverage of neutrality, a contentious topic within the final 12 months.
“The choice to take a place about one occasion or situation … can create a way of institutional orthodoxy that chills tutorial freedom,” Saller and Martinez wrote.
They attributed the “restricted breadth” of their feedback to this point to a “basic coverage of not issuing statements about information occasions indirectly linked to campus,” including that the neighborhood “mustn’t count on frequent commentary” sooner or later.
The assertion additionally referenced an incident of “identity-based concentrating on,” by which a non-faculty teacher “addressed the Center East battle in a fashion that known as out particular person college students at school primarily based on their backgrounds and identities.” The teacher is now not instructing because the College investigates the incident.
Saller and Martinez reaffirmed neighborhood members’ rights of free expression however inspired mutual respect: “It’s price remembering that whereas a local weather of free expression requires respiration room, our aspiration, as a neighborhood, is for respectful and substantive discourse.”
“We acknowledge the deeply felt impacts throughout our neighborhood,” Saller and Martinez wrote. “We encourage you to method each other with a spirit of compassion and respect for our shared humanity.”