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The Statesman

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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

Major U.S. cities and college campuses are speaking out about the conflict taking place in Gaza and Israel, and Stony Brook University is no different.

Over the past month, Stony Brook students, administration and faculty have demonstrated their views on the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict that began Oct. 7 — both on and off campus. Students in particular have been discontent with the University’s response to the atrocities. 

Faculty members plan to host an open mic event with the Center for Changing Systems of Power on Nov. 16 from 4-5:30 p.m. in the Poetry Center for a guided discussion among students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members to share their thoughts.

This is pure evil, and people are still finding ways to kind of justify using some sort of ambiguous, nebulous context.”

— Roy Harel

According to Reuters and Al Jazeera, the death toll of Palestinians in Gaza exceeds 11,000 people — including over 4,100 children — since the initial Oct. 7 Hamas attack. CNN reports that over 1,200 people have died in Israel. 

Roy Harel, a senior history major, is very vocal about his stance on the ongoing war and actively advocates for Israel on his social media accounts. As the former president of Seawolves for Israel, an Israeli American Council (IAC) Mishelanu Fellow and current Hillel student leader, Harel is passionate about educating people on Israel’s side of the conflict. 

“The biggest issue surrounding the current war that’s going on is that people are conflating the current situation in 2023 with some sort of wider historical narrative,” Harel said. 

But for many other students, academics and advocates, context is crucial to understanding the complexity of this war and the media’s portrayal of it. 

Israel occupied the Gaza Strip, Jerusalem and West Bank in the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. Since then, decades of bloodshed and disarray have preceded the Oct. 7 attacks.

But more Palestinian lives have been claimed in the past month alone than in the last 15 years.

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