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MIT alums rip 'disastrous' antisemitism testimony but stop short of calling for resignation

Over 700 MIT alumni are calling on the school's administration to take action after President Sally Kornbluth's "disastrous" congressional testimony last week.

Hundreds of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) alumni have sent a scathing letter to the school's governing body, the MIT Corporation, and administration, scolding them for their support of MIT's president after her "disastrous" congressional testimony last week.

The letter, signed by over 700 MIT Jewish alumni and MIT allies, calls the school's administration into action after failing to condemn President Sally Kornbluth's testimony on Capitol Hill last week when she "implied that calls for genocide of Jews may not constitute bullying and harassment under MIT’s code of conduct, depending on context."

"Exactly what kind of message was the MIT Corporation trying to send to the MIT community, and especially its Jewish members, with such a statement so at odds with the overwhelming majority of the public?" the letter states.

"President Kornbluth’s failure to control antisemitism on MIT’s campus has distracted MIT’s students and administration from MIT’s core mission," the alumni say. "We are alarmed to observe MIT earning a national reputation for antisemitism on President Kornbluth’s watch, rather than for academic excellence, and joining a group of ignominious universities currently struggling with antisemitism on their campuses."

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The former students went on to argue that "MIT’s public reputation affects its ability to attract the best students, faculty candidates, and corporate research partners for its scientific work."

The former MIT scholars pointed out that "even in view of the disastrous congressional testimony by President Kornbluth, the executive board of the MIT Corporation chose to extend its full support to the President."

"Notably, President Kornbluth was the only University president that did not issue any apology or clarification in response to the intense backlash to her Congressional testimony," they wrote.

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In contrast, they note that Kornbluth’s testimony was initially met with shock and subsequently widespread public criticism from across the entire spectrum of American opinion, including members of the Biden administration, liberal legal scholar Laurence Tribe, Gov. Kathy Hochul, D-N.Y., Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., second gentleman Douglas Emhoff, Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., and Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y.

"We defy the MIT Corporation to find any other point of common agreement amongst these diverse public figures, or indeed any prominent public figure who found President Kornbluth’s testimony from December 5, 2023 to be acceptable," they charged.

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The alumni called for "immediate and concrete" action from the institution, including "enforce meaningful consequences for the individuals who violate MIT’s rules, create an antisemitism-specific task force on campus, and publicly announce that calls for violence against civilians is grounds for expulsion and amend the MIT Code of Conduct to include this if necessary."

"We look forward to hearing about concrete actions that the MIT administration is taking to right this flailing ship and create a protected, supported, and safe environment for the entire MIT community without exception, and to reassure Jewish students that calls for their genocide are considered harassment at MIT and will be met with swift and meaningful disciplinary action," they said. 

A representative for Kornbluth did not respond to Fox News Digital's request for comment.

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