The recent open letter from the new Princeton Faculty for Justice in Palestine (FJP) group deplores the “culture of intimidation, silencing, and punishment” directed towards dissident voices “by networks of propaganda, intimidation, and surveillance.” Illogically, FJP also declares its support for “an academic and cultural boycott of Israel and Israeli educational institutions,” i.e. the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. What is the BDS movement if not a network of intimidation and surveillance aimed at silencing and punishing?

Several of the signatories to the FJP letter hold appointments in the Department of Near Eastern Studies, which has an institutional membership in the Middle Eastern Studies Association (MESA), which in 2022 endorsed BDS. BDS’s delegitimization of Israel is eliminationist in both intent and effect. Hamas has confirmed for the world what eliminationism ultimately means in practice. After Oct. 7, Princeton should not maintain institutional memberships in, or otherwise support the work of, academic organizations which endorse the illiberal and eliminationist BDS movement.

Robert Hill ’00
Miami, Fla.