DeSantis orders Florida universities to disband Students for Justice in Palestine chapters

by WorldTribune Staff / 247 Real News October 25, 2023

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered all state universities to disband Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapters.

Students for Justice in Palestine chapters at universities nationwide have been holding rallies in support Palestinians since the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre of Israeli civilians.

Ray Rodrigues, chancellor of the State University System of Florida, cited the National Students for Justice in Palestine’s “day of resistance” toolkit, which praised the Oct. 7 massacre of Israeli civilians by Hamas terrorists as a “historic win for the Palestinian resistance.”

“These chapters exist under the headship of the National Students for Justice in Palestine, who distributed a toolkit identifying themselves as part of the Operation Al-Aqsa Flood,” Rodrigues said in a memo to university presidents on Tuesday.

The national SJP’s toolkit features a graphic of a paraglider, a reference to the Hamas paragliders which terrorists used to descend on and massacre Israeli concert-goers. The toolkit states: “[w]e as Palestinian students in exile are PART of this movement, not in solidarity with this movement.”

“Here, National SJP has affirmatively identified it is a part of the Operation Al-Aqsa Flood — a terrorist led attack,” said Rodrigues.

Under Florida law, it is a felony to “knowingly provide material support” to a designated foreign terrorist organization. The State Department designated Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, as a foreign terrorist organization in 1997.

Rodrigues said two universities within the Florida state system have active SJP chapters, although he did not name the campuses, and warned that university officials could face “adverse employment actions and suspensions.”

“The State University System will continue working with the Executive Office of the Governor and SUS’s Board of Governors to ensure we are all using all tools at our disposal to crack down on campus demonstrations that delve beyond protected First Amendment speech into harmful support for terrorist groups,” Rodrigues said.

Soon after the Oct. 7 attack on Israeli, DeSantis launched Operation Israel Rescue to fly Americans stranded in Israel to Tampa International Airport. Nearly 700 Americans have been flown home on four separate flights.

The state has also sent 85 pallets of donated supplies to Tel Aviv.

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