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HomeWorldUniversity of Florida president releases strong pro-Israel statement, blasts 'elite academia'

University of Florida president releases strong pro-Israel statement, blasts ‘elite academia’


The University of Florida president issued a strong statement of support for Israel, saying that there is “no defense for terrorism,” and blasting “elite academia” for issuing anti-Israel statements.

“I will not tiptoe around this simple fact: What Hamas did is evil and there is no defense for terrorism. This shouldn’t be hard,” UF President Ben Sasse wrote in a statement. “Sadly, too many people in elite academia have been so weakened by their moral confusion that, when they see videos of raped women, hear of a beheaded baby, or learn of a grandmother murdered in her home, the first reaction of some is to “provide context” and try to blame the raped women, beheaded baby, or the murdered grandmother.”

There is no defense for terrorism. This shouldn’t be hard.

— Ben Sasse, University of Florida President

Former U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., is president of the University of Florida in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon/File/Fox News)

“In other grotesque cases, they express simple support for the terrorists,” Sasse added.

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The former Nebraska U.S. senator did not mince words, blasting Hamas for their terrorist attacks on Israelis, which killed over 1,000, including children, and wounded over 2,000. 

“Our educational mission here begins with the recognition and explicit acknowledgment of human dignity – the same human dignity that Hamas’ terrorists openly scorn,” Sasse said. “Every single human life matters.”

University of Florida campus

A campus entrance at the University of Florida, in Gainesville, Fla.  (Miami Herald/Tribune News Service via Getty Images/File/Fox News)

The president of the over 60,000 student body defended free speech, saying that “violence and vandalism” will not be tolerated.

If anti-Israel protests come, we will absolutely be ready to act if anyone dares to escalate beyond peaceful protest. Speech is protected – violence and vandalism are not,” Sasse said.

Speech is protected – violence and vandalism are not.

— Ben Sasse, University of Florida President

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The president also noted that the United with Israel vigil that was interrupted after a student passed out. 

The University of Florida Police Department said in a statement that someone in attendance fainted, which prompted the students in attendance to panic and cause a stampede.

“The call was misunderstood by the crowd, which disperse in a panic,” police said.

University of Maryland students

College students pray at a vigil for Israel on Monday.  (Julia Nikhinson/For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

“At least” five students were injured at the vigil and were treated with minor injuries, police said.

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“The chaos at the event was an unfortunate end to a beautiful gathering, but I wanted to let you know that there was no attack on campus and the injuries that have been reported seem to be relatively minor,” Sasse wrote.



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