9 Maggio 2024

Australia, studenti pro pal fanno saluti neonazisti durante una protesta anti-Israele

Australian student appears to make Nazi salute during Gaza protest online meeting
Another student was booted off the virtual meeting for making what appeared to be a Hitler moustache

Students in Australia have been slammed for allegedly making Nazigestures during an online student discussion about anti-Israel protests on the campus of the Australian National University .

The four-hour-long virtual ANU Students’ Association meeting is being investigated by authorities after footage appeared to show a student putting her finger below her nose to create an Adolf Hitler moustache. The student was allegedly booted off the call.

In the same meeting, another student repeatedly raised their arm above the camera in a way that appeared to mimic the Nazi salute. Seated next to a different student wearing a black and white Keffiyeh scarf, the student, who was partially cut off by the web camera, raised their arm twice in what has been labelled a Nazi-era Sieg Heil salute. The student remained in the virtual meeting.

The Australian Union of Jewish Students (AUJS) said the gestures allegedly occurred at the ANU Students’ Association’s (ANUSA) annual general meeting when a motion about antisemitism was raised by Jewish students.

The Australian newspaper reported today that around 570 people attended the online ANUSA meeting and a discussion about the anti-Israel encampment on the Canberra campus dominated the discussion.

ANUSA was one of the groups that established the anti-Israel encampment in the capital city, according to local media outlets.

The student who was accused of mimicking the Nazi leader was kicked out of the meeting for alleged “abhorrent discriminatory behaviour” once it was brought to the executive’s attention. The allegations are now being investigated by ANU authorities.

Much like protests at some UK campuses, anti-Israel encampments at universities in Australia have ballooned over the last week, inspired by encampments in the US.

At the University of Queensland on Thursday, a window was smashed during a campus protest. The university called it “completely unacceptable” and said they had written to protest organisers to seek an urgent meeting.

The smashed window came after a 23-year-old woman was charged by police for public nuisance after allegedly urinating on a Jewish academic’s office.

Last week, ABC News reported that some Jewish students at ANU had been targeted at the encampment with Nazi salutes and death threats.

A spokesperson for ANU told media outlets it was “investigating the matter” of the ANUSA meeting.

“Any racism or hate speech, including antisemitism, is unacceptable at ANU,” the institution said in a statement.

“ANUSA is a student-led and independent organisation and the annual general meeting was ANUSA’s responsibility to manage.”

Photo credits: The Jewish Chronicle