PRESS RELEASE: Anti-Semitic CUNY Commencement Address Must Be Condemned by the Special Envoy to Monitor & Combat Anti-Semitism & the Biden Administration

Fatima Mohammed, CUNY Law commencement speaker. Photo: Twitter

by Aaron Troodler

5/31/2023, 12:15:11 PM

The antisemitic commencement address at CUNY Law School by Fatima Mousa Mohammed was reprehensible and reproachable, and the anti-Israel animus that she exhibited by vilifying the Jewish State in her remarks was appalling. Subjecting an audience at a law school graduation to such brazen hatemongering goes beyond the pale, and the blatant fabrications and dangerous insinuations that she made underscore her utter disdain for Israel and the Jewish community. Ms. Mohammed used the platform she was given to promulgate bigoted statements and dangerous antisemitic tropes, and her actions and words were vile and vindictive. It was horrifying to hear people in the audience applaud Ms. Mohammed’s repugnant remarks, which sadly fosters an environment in which antisemitism and hate are permitted to fester. In addition, it was disturbing to see Mayor Eric Adams, who has properly condemned Ms. Mohammed’s hate-filled speech, being booed by the audience when he referenced his former career as a police officer during his remarks at the CUNY graduation.

Due to the heinous nature of Ms. Mohammed’s antisemitic remarks, we call upon Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism Ambassador Deborah Lipstadt and the Biden administration to publicly denounce her speech and to condemn her blatant bigotry. In the aftermath of the White House’s newly released U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism, it is essential that Ambassador Lipstadt and the Biden administration take this opportunity to condemn Ms. Mohammed’s despicable antisemitic display, which was shamelessly made in a public forum. The Biden administration’s strategy to combat antisemitism addresses the hate that Jewish students face on college campuses, and it is therefore inconceivable that the White House would not take this opportunity to condemn such obvious and outrageous antisemitism in a university setting. In order to effectively combat antisemitism, it needs to be made evident that Ms. Mohammed’s comments indeed constitute antisemitism, and it must be made clear that there are ramifications for trafficking in hate.

The CUNY Board of Trustees denounced Ms. Mohammed’s hate speech, yet the White House has remained silent thus far. Staying silent in the face of racist rhetoric that engenders greater hatred towards Jews cannot be an option, and we therefore urge Ambassador Lipstadt and the Biden administration to immediately issue a forceful denunciation of Ms. Mohammed’s outrageous antisemitic commencement address.

Founded in 1974 by Holocaust survivors, the Israel Heritage Foundation works to support sovereignty throughout Israel, including Judea and Samaria, strengthen Israel’s security, encourage worldwide Aliyah, combat bigotry and antisemitism by showing Israel authentically, and establish genuine peace through Israel’s good deeds and innovation.