December 12 Legal Update

As of December 12th, we’ve raised 50 percent of our current goal of $100,000 for legal costs to defeat Lawfare’s frivolous lawsuits and build the Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies program (AMED) at San Francisco State University.

We promised you that we would defeat Lawfare. We did it.
We promised you that we would not allow Lawfare or any of their allies to derail us. We did it.
We promised you that we would maintain AMED Studies. Now we need your help to do it.

We need your help to raise the next $50,000.


The federal judge’s dismissal of this bullying lawsuit WITH PREJUDICE (meaning that it cannot be revised and refiled yet again) sends a clear message:
* The talents of a prestigious international law firm of over 900 attorneys could not save such a frivolous suit.
* The Israel lobby’s arm twisting, smearing, and bullying did not succeed in silencing us.
* Covert collaboration failed in the face of a public and transparent movement.

We do not resort to smearing, lies, bullying, and attacks even against those who continue to lie about us.

We do not make secret deals with university administrators.

We refuse to throw our sisters and brothers under the bus at SFSU or in the San Francisco Bay Area and we insist on the indivisibility of justice.

We continue to demand resources for AMED Studies even when we get smeared as “too demanding” or when administrators act out of fear of losing some position or remain silent to accrue rewards at our expense. We hope that their consciences will act up at some point.

We remind ourselves that the ultimate goal of the attacks is to distract and derail— to silence either directly or indirectly. We remind ourselves that students and other academics will learn from our victories— or from any surrenders. We must stand up and be counted, even though it’s taxing.

We learned steadfastness from the people of Palestine and everywhere else who keep struggling day in and day out, despite impossible odds.

You, our colleagues, family, students, and a broad coalition of folks, came together and fought even when the odds were not in our favor. We refused to be distracted. We insisted on teaching Palestine as part and parcel of the indivisibility of justice.

It took a movement to defeat the racists, Islamophobes, and white supremacists. You spoke up even when you knew you might be retaliated against. You believed in our ability to win and showed up for court, for events, for phone calls, and for lending a shoulder. Together, we have all shown courage.


And now we must continue to show courage. Lawfare continues to try to harass us and muzzle our speech. Currently, we are fighting on three fronts:

  1. Lawfare has just appealed Judge Orrick’s ruling to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal, despite having been beaten twice in federal court. Our activists, legal team, and Dr. Abdulhadi will all be back in the courtroom, defending our victory. Beating Lawfare yet again, but now in the appellate court, will only make our ruling even stronger. Activists around the country will be able to use it to defend themselves in similar suits.
  2. Lawfare has filed yet another suit. This one is in state court, and does not name Dr. Abdulhadi as a defendant. Although the sole defendant is SFSU, Lawfare is using this case to demand documents and testimony from student and faculty activists. We expect that any information the University gives to Lawfare will promptly be turned over to Canary Mission or similar groups bent on destroying lives and careers. We are monitoring the suit as closely as possible and our legal team is working to protect activists who are being forced to testify.
  3. We have sued SFSU for its betrayal of the AMED program, its harassment of Dr. Abdulhadi, and its refusal to lift a finger when she, activist colleagues, and students are harassed and threatened. We have finally been able to take the offensive in our fight for accountability and for fidelity to the spirit of those who fought before us 50 years ago. We are confident that we will get justice for AMED, justice for Dr. Abdulhadi, and justice for the students who SFSU is so willing to ignore.


The court has dismissed with prejudice Lawfare’s frivolous lawsuit against Dr. Abdulhadi, but SFSU remains silent in the face of this victory. Isn’t it time for SFSU to stop their intimate and opaque collaboration with Zionists and right-wingers?Now is the time to seriously take up the charge of the spirit of ’68!

Hold SFSU accountable and demand that the university fulfill the spirit of ’68 by:
1. Ending its anti-Arab and anti-Palestinian discrimination.
2. Conducting an open and transparent investigation into the failure to protect us and the tendency of SFSU to weaponize free speech for white supremacy, Nazism and Zionism.
3. Meeting its commitments to Dr. Abdulhadi and the community andstopping the harassment that is starving AMED Studies of necessary resources.

AMED survives in the face of SFSU’s shameful policies and actions.

Our students are flourishing. Our open classrooms are well attended, despite SFSU’s refusal to protect us.

Palestinian students held an amazing and a successful Edward Said Mural anniversary celebration on November 1st, 2018.

We have submitted a proposal for Study Abroad in Palestine, building on the past delegations we organized in 2005, 2010, 2014, 2016, and 2018.

Here’s how you can help keep our movement mobilized:
1. Contact the president, the provost, and the dean. Put pressure on them to be accountable and keep their commitments.
2. Organize and host victory parties where Dr. Abdulhadi and our legal team can speak about what the Lawfare victory means to us, our movement and justice in/for Palestine.
3. Give a tax-deductible donation to our cause via Al-Awda.




To learn more about our cause click here.

In Solidarity,
The International Campaign to Defend Professor Rabab Abdulhadi