It’s a tough time to be pro-Israel. But the Shillman Fellows of Reservists on Duty are used to challenges.
Reservists on Duty was co-founded by Amit Deri. A major in the Israeli Defense Forces, Deri hadn’t paid much attention to politics during his decade in the military. While in the IDF, he didn’t know “what was happening outside the military”. And once he did, he was determined to fight back with the truth.
Deri had lost one of his best friends in the fight against terrorism. And he and other IDF vets founded and staffed Reservists on Duty to ensure that those sacrifices in the War on Terror would not be in vain.
On American college campuses, Deri saw for the first time just how ugly the lies were.
At the University of Houston, a school that Deri describes as one of the worst, alongside UC-Berkeley and UC-Irvine, a girl told him, “You’re taking organs from Palestinians and putting them into Israelis”.
Like American soldiers during the Vietnam War, Israeli soldiers are demonized and spat on. There is no bizarre atrocity and no impossible horror, too implausible or unlikely to attribute to the men in green.
Reservists on Duty challenges the prejudices and lies by bringing actual Israeli veterans to campus.
Every Israeli Apartheid Week, they call up the ‘reservists’ who jump into action.
“We’re sending our guys there during Apartheid Week to engage with students exposed to these carnivals of hate,” Deri says.
In 3 weeks, they’ve hit over 30 campuses. The University of San Diego is one of them.
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