An assistant professor of rhetoric and composition at Oberlin College has ignited controversy and calls for her firing after she wrote provocative Facebook posts, The Chronicle-Telegram reported.
One of those posts accused Israel of being a perpetrator of the 9/11 terror attacks, according to Fox News, which posted screenshots from Joy Karega’s account.
The privacy settings on Karega’s Facebook account have since been changed to restrict access to her posts.
However, one contained a graphic of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pulling off his mask to reveal an ISIS militant underneath, the New York Post reported.
“France wants to Free Palestine? Time for a false flag…,” the text for the image read, according to The Post.
A separate post stated that “ISIS was created by the CIA and Mossad so that ‘Israeli and Zionist Jews’ could carry out the 9/11 terror attacks,” according to The NY Post.
Though there has been angry response to Karega’s comments, Oberlin is standing beside the professor, citing her right to academic freedom as its reason for not punishing the professor for her words.
“Cultivating academic freedom can be difficult and at times painful for any college community,” President Marvin Krislov wrote in a letter to the Oberlin community cited by the Chronicle-Telegram.
“The principles of academic freedom and freedom of speech are not just principles to which we turn to face these challenges, but also the very practices that ensure we can develop meaningful responses to prejudice,” he wrote.
Krislov further wrote that, as a “practicing Jew,” the statements affected him on a personal level. Yet he explained that maintaining a culture of academic freedom was essential to Oberlin’s mission.
In one of the few Facebook posts that remains public, Karega hits back at the backlash and intimidation she says she is now facing as a result of her comments.
She also seems to attribute the angry response to racism she faces as a black professor.
“These recent activities in my own professional life have handed me a LARGE body of data (emails, voicemail messages, tweets, Facebook inbox messages, etc.) that will shed light on and provide insight into how and to what extent anti-Blackness rhetorics show up in antisemitic call-out culture and practices,” she wrote on Facebook.
Oberlin College and Karega did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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