The internationally renowned artist Carlos Latuff drew a piece displaying the hypocrisy of a British ‘socially responsible’ university which invests money raised through tuition fees for the destruction of Palestinian homes. The University of Manchester is the only university in the UK to include ‘Social Responsibility’ among its top 3 priorities. Their ‘socially responsible investment policy’ is a key component of their self-proclaimed ‘social responsibility’. The policy details their intent to abstain from investments in companies which either contribute to human rights violations or/and armament sales to military regimes.
However, despite their self-proclaimed ‘social responsibility’ both “nationally and internationally”, the university continues to invest over £70 million in companies which are complicit in human rights violations both in Palestine and across the globe. For instance, one major contradiction of its investment policy is their investments in companies such as Caterpillar. Caterpillar supply the armored bulldozers for the Israeli Defense Forces which are used for the demolition of Palestinian homes to make way for the ever-expanding illegal Israeli settlements.
The funding of such investments arises from students tuition fees. Fees which are meant to contribute to further benefit the educational system, and increasing the university’s message of ‘social responsibility’. Yet, to the contrary, every student is contributing to the funding of ethnic cleansing and war crimes, as defined under the Geneva conventions. There are already over 5 million Palestinian refugees according to the UN. The demolition of Palestinian homes only contributes to the rise of the Palestinian refugee count. Investing in Caterpillar and similar companies contributes to both human rights violations and armament sales.
Latuff also expressed his support vocally for the BDS campaign: “I’m glad I made this cartoon for the BDS campaign at the University of Manchester because I support the efforts of its activists and I firmly believe on BDS as a way of pressure against the long-term Israeli apartheid on Palestinian territory”.
T-shirts and prints are available with the Carlos Latuff sketch.