The UK offshoot of an American pro-Israel advocacy organisation has begun “Zionising” students on campus in the UK and Ireland, after its latest training session.
Trainers at the first annual CAMERA on Campus UK Student Leadership Conference told students to fight back against supporters call “industrial anti-Israel distortion” taking place in universities, after the event last week.
Israel activist David Collier said: “If we are to fight back against the industrial anti-Israel distortion taking place, we need to reclaim the word ‘Zionism’, and ‘Zionise’ students.” He added that the training “ticks all the boxes”.
Attendee Saskia Millman, a law student at the University of Glasgow, said the group of 20 learned “useful skills such as dissecting media reports and responding effectively to articles” as well as tips on “social media strategy”.
It is the latest such project by an American group to train pro-Israel students on British campuses. Last month, The British arm of US-based StandWithUs launched its first 21 fellowships at British universities to “teach their peers about Israel and combat anti-Israel rhetoric”. Students are financially compensated for their activities.
StandWithUs, which funds almost 100 such Emerson fellowships in the US, said the UK roll-out was in part designed to “counter the corrosive effects of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign” on campus.
The new UK Fellows undertook their three-day training last month, beginning at the Israeli Embassy in London, before taking up their places in universities across the country, where they are expected to host programmes and “counter misinformation” about Israel.