Ahmad Saadaldin [Ahmad Hussamaldin Saadaldin] promoted a terrorist & spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in 2015 – 2016. Saadaldin was the President of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at USF, from 2012-2014.
Saadaldin was an activist with the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and helped lead a BDS campaign on the USF campus from 2013-2017.
In 2015, Saadaldin was featured as a speaker at the American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) Conference and a featured speaker at an American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) event at the National Press Club in Washington.
As of November 2020, opencorporates.com stated that Saadaldin incorporated Peace House Productions, in July 2013. As of September 2020, Saadaldin’s LinkedIn page said he was a “Producer“ at Peace House Productions. Peace House Productions is an anti-Israel media production group.
Saadaldin was reportedly a contributor to Al Jazeera English (AJE) in 2015.
In 2017, Saadaldin ran as a third-party candidate for Florida’s House of Representatives District 58″special election,” under the name “Hussam Ahmad.” While running, Saadaldin led and reportedly organized an anti-Israel rally sponsored by the Council on Arabic and Islamic Relations (CAIR).
Saadaldin’s LinkedIn page also said that he graduated from USF in 2014, with a degree in Public Relations. Saadaldin reportedly transferred to USF after completing two years at Hillsborough Community College (HCC) in Tampa, Fl.
On April 15, 2008, Saadaldin, then aged 18, was arrested in Florida for “loitering or prowling.”
As of September 2020, Saadaldin went by the name “Hussam Ahmad” on Facebook.
Promoting a Terrorist
On May 27, 2016, Saadaldin shared an announcement of an event in Tampa, Florida, in support of Rasmea Odeh.
Odeh was a military operative with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), an internationally designated terrorist organization. In 1969, she masterminded a bombing that killed two university students in a Jerusalem supermarket. Odeh also attempted to bomb the British consulate.
Odeh confessed, in a highly detailed account, the day following her arrest. In a 2004 documentary, one of Odeh’s co-conspirators directly implicated her as the mastermind.
In 1970, an Israeli court tried and convicted Odeh for her involvement in both bombings and sentenced her to life imprisonment. However, Odeh was released 10 years later, in a prisoner swap and emigrated to the United States. In 2017, Odeh was deported to Jordan and stripped of U.S. citizenship, after admitting to immigration fraud.
Spreading Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories
On April 10, 2015, Saadaldin was a featured speaker at an ADC event titled: “The Israel Lobby,” at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
Authors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt’s 2007 book, “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy,” invokes the conspiracy theory of Israeli and Jewish control over the U.S. government. Proponents of the theory decry the negative effects on American interests, particularly in foreign policy.
The event promised “an unprecedented, frank and overdue look at the power of the Israel Lobby in the United States.”
Saadaldin’s talk was titled: “Overcoming obstacles: SJP successes.” During his speech, Saadaldin insinuated [00:06:08] that Jewish students on the USF student court were repressing student democracy, called [00:07:24] USF’s then-student body President, Brian Goff, an “AIPAC puppet.”
The stated mission of AIPAC is to “strengthen, protect and promote the U.S.-Israel relationship in ways that enhance the security of the United States and Israel.”
The implication that AIPAC buys political support for Israel has been described as playing into “anti-Semitic tropes” that led to “centuries of stereotypes about Jews using money to control the world.”
Saadaldin also suggested [00:08:10] that a USF Hillel Executive Director meeting with Jewish Trustees to combat BDS was part of a plot to tell [00:09:26] students to “shut-up, go to class, pay a lot of money for tuition and for text-books.”
Hillel International is a Jewish campus organization serving college students at more than 550 universities worldwide.
Saadaldin also claimed [00:10:10] “ …It happens every year in D.C. when AIPAC recruits students and indoctrinates them with pro-Israeli propaganda” and suggested [00:10:22] that the Israeli government and pro-Israel students were responsible for suppression by the student government and the university.
On January 21, 2016, Saadaldin made [00:00:11] a short appearance in a Peace House video titled: “Stop Joe’s Bill.” The video alleged [00:02:23] that AIPAC financially controls legislation, that it bribed [00:02:37] Florida State Senator Joe Negron and gave his wife, Rebecca Negron, a seat in the U.S. House of Congress representing Florida, in exchange for pushing a state-wide anti-BDS bill.
The video featured Peace House actress Taylor Valentine, who claimed [00:01:25] that Israel is “making a great effort to undermine democracy and hold up a giant middle finger to the first amendment.”
The video also featured [00:01:30] USF SJP member Mahmoud Ali Mohamed wearing a “Hi I’m AIPAC” pin and a suit patterned with dollar signs, announcing “we have money, just tell us how much you need.”
On February 4, 2016, Peace House produced another video also titled: “Stop Joe’s Bill,” featuring Mohamed acting again as a AIPAC member, claiming to have bribed Senator Negron to push the anti-BDS bill.
Mohamed stated [00:00:06], “I’ve been buying houses and senates all across the country, but today we’re in the sunshine state doing some shady s**t.”
He also added [00:00:39]: “The people calling the shots here don’t even live here, heck, I’m even on behalf of another country forcing you to do business with it, boy when you got money you can do whatever you want.”
Towards the end of the video, Mohamed said [00:01:58], “I know there are a lot of problems in this state..but all your Floridians should be worried about is me, and what I want, and that’s your money… So call your representatives today and tell them I need your money…it costs a pretty penny to get the U.S to veto all these resolutions in the U.N.”
On March 10, 2016, the Governor of Florida signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 86, prohibiting a state agency from contracting with a company that boycotts Israel.
On April 30, 2017, Saadaldin posted to Facebook a photo of himself performing in a Peace House music video titled: “Boycott Sabra,” where he promoted [00:00:56] BDS as “the only viable option.” Sabra is partially owned by the Israeli company, the Strauss group.
On March 9, 2016, Saadaldin featured in a Peace House video titled: “If you don’t know…now you know. #BoycottSabra.”
On March 7, 2016, Peace House posted to Facebook a rap video condemning American record producer, DJ and radio personality DJ Khaled for endorsing Sabra.
The video featured Saadaldin rapping [00:00:23]: “The IDF is lethal, they killing all your people” and [00:00:49] “you’re reppin’ a brand that’s helping bury kids beneath the earth.”
Saadaldin also labeled [00:00:55] Israel “apartheid” and claimed [00:03:54] “human rights being violated just for being Palestinian.”
On October 9, 2014, Saadaldin changed his Facebook cover photo to an image of anti-Israel demonstrators at the Barclay Center arena in Brooklyn, NY, holding up a sign that said: “Don’t Play With Apartheid #BDS.”
On October 9, 2014, the Brooklyn Nets basketball team played an exhibition game with the Israeli team Maccabi Tel Aviv at the Barclay Center.
On November 1, 2014, the anti-Israel publication Mondoweiss reported on Facebook that Saadaldin was involved in a 2014 “Block the Boat” protest, which was organized by Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC).
The protest’s goal was to stop an Israeli ship from docking and unloading its cargo of trade items at the Port of Tampa.
That same day, Saadaldin posted a photo of the “Block the Boat” protest to Facebook and added: “Tampa activists show solidarity with Palestine by blocking Port of Tampa entrance to protest the docking of Israeli Apartheid ship ‘ZIM’ . Brave activist parks her car in middle of entrance road and CHAINS her neck to the door. Police are clueless. Major delays. Street backed up. Major traffic jam. #BlocktheboatTPA.”
On May 16, 2014, Saadaldin posted to Facebook in support of the boycott of Israeli company SodaStream, writing: “…BDS is working. Force these companies to rethink how they do business.”
In February 2016, 500 Palestinians lost their jobs when Sodastream moved its factory from the West Bank to southern Israel. Although the company denied that BDS had an impact on the decision, the BDS movement took credit for the factory’s relocation.
BDS Campus Activism
In January 2013, while President of SJP USF, Saadaldin spearheaded [00:01:43] SJP USF’s anti-Israel divestment campaign. Saadaldin placed [00:03:47] a divestment resolution on USF’s student body elections ballot, as part of a school-wide referendum.
The divestment referendum failed [00:05:46] to garner the requisite 50% plus one vote and did not pass.
In the Spring of 2014, while President of SJP USF, Saadaldin launched an SJP USFschool-wide petition promoting BDS.
On February 10, 2014, SJP USF promoted a video on Vimeo that claimed that USF invested in companies that made “fighter jets and rockets that the IDF uses against civilians in the Gaza strip.”
On April 23, 2014, SJP USF released a video to YouTube featuring [00:00:10] Saadaldin and other activists, erecting a mock “Apartheid Wall,” meant to mimic Israel’s security barrier and calling on USF to divest from Israel.
Israel’s security barrier, 97 percent of which is a low chain-link barrier, was built as a deterrent to Palestinian terror attacks. The concrete portions of the fence were built in response to Palestinian sniper attacks.
On April 24, 2014, Saadaldin posted on his website that he collected over 10,000 signatures “calling on the University to ‘divest’ from companies affiliated with human rights violations.” SJP USF posted a press release about the same petition earlier on their Tumblr page.
SJP USF’s press release added: “The petition builds on the legacy of the civil rights movement and the movement to end South African apartheid.”
The USF Foundation, which manages USF investments from donor contributions, reportedly rejected SJP USF’s petition, which called on the school to divest from multiple companies doing business with Israel.
On April 25, 2014, Saadaldin gave a press conference about the divestment initiative, where he accused [00:01:50] the G4S company of managing the security of “child prisoners” in Palestine.
On May 28, 2014, SJP USF held a press conference with WMNF News, a Florida-based community News station, regarding the petition. Saadaldin stated [00:11:38] that SJP USF met with the USF Foundation’s CEO [Chief Executive Officer] and Board Chair and presented SJP USF’s petition.
The USF Foundation discussed and rejected [00:11:51] SJP USF’s petition because it was found to be outside the Foundation’s endowment and investment management policies and guidelines.
That same day, Saadaldin led an SJP USF protest outside a USF Foundation Committee meeting, where he encouraged [00:00:21] attendees to “stay til the end,” to speak [00:00:23] to USF Foundation members about “how upset you are” that BDS didn’t pass.
Saadaldin criticized USF for investing [00:00:05] in Caterpillar, which does business in Israel. He accused the company of “killing people, bulldozing homes.” He also repeated several times that the Board’s decision was “pure bulls**t.”
In response to the petition’s rejection, USF SJP placed a large billboard near the Tampa campus declaring: “10,000 Students Silenced.” The billboard featured a person’s face with tape over the lips and demanded that the university end its investments “in Israeli Apartheid.”
In 2017, Saadaldin worked together with USF Divest to promote a divestment referendum to “divest from fossil fuels, private prisons and companies complicit in human rights violations,” specifically “human rights violations in Palestine and Yemen.”
On March 4, 2017, 89% of students who voted in a school-wide referendum, voted in favor of divestment.
On March 30, 2017, USF Divest featured [00:00:06] Saadaldin in a video posted to Facebook and calling on then-USF President Judy Genshaft to put the divestment referendum into effect. The video filmed Saadaldin confronting [00:01:32] President Genshaft.
The video also claimed that USF invests [00:00:18] in “corrupt corporations that “damage the environment, civil rights, and human rights,” and featured an illustrated airplane with a star of David, dropping bombs on a city.
On April 13, 2017, USF Divest posted a video to Facebook that featured [00:00:16] Saadaldin, along with Peace House actress Taylor Valentine and other USF Divest activists in a video aiming to pressure President Genshaft to adopt the divestment initiative.
On April 14, 2017, USF Divest posted another video to Facebook that featured [00:00:04] Saadaldin, in order to push President Genshaft to adopt the divestment initiative.
On October 11, 2017, Saadaldin was a panelist at a USF Divest event titled: “United We Divest, with Women’s March Co-Chairs.” The event featured Women’s March leaders and anti-Israel activists Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory.
Linda Sarsour has frequently used the word “Zionist” as a pejorative and has tweeted that “nothing is creepier than Zionism.” She has aligned with noted anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan, dismissed [00:07:45] those who see her alignment with Farrakhan as problematic and slammed the “Jewish Media” for calling attention to it.
At Farrakhan’s 2015 #JusticeOrElse March, Sarsour asserted [00:00:36]: “The same people who justify the massacres of Palestinian people and call it ‘collateral damage’ are the same people who justify the murder of young black men and women.”
Tamika Mallory has also demonized Israel and been accused of anti-Semitism.
Mallory is a supporter of Louis Farrakhan and has called him “the GOAT [Greatest of All Time].” Farrakhan has equated Jews to both Satan and termites and called Hitler a “very great man.”
Campaigning for Florida State Senate
On November 28, 2017, Saadaldin launched a fundraising campaign to fund his run as a third-party candidate for Florida’s House of Representatives District 58 “special election,” under the name “Hussam Ahmad.”
On December 8, 2017, while he was campaigning for candidacy in Florida’s House of Representatives, Saadaldin led and reportedly helped organize an anti-Israel rally to protest the United States Government’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The event’s Facebook description claimed that the move “will legitimize the city’s current state of apartheid under Israeli control.”
The rally was co-hosted by CAIR-Florida and USF SJP, among other groups.
Saadaldin gave a Twitter-based video interview during the rally, where he said, regarding his third party candidacy [00:01:16] “ We’re tired of the Democrats and the Republicans who have sold out to AIPAC, the pro-Israel organization,” adding [00:01:24]: “we wanna free America and free Palestine.”
Saadaldin also stated [00:01:36]: “If anything in regards to Palestine comes up, for example, anti-BDS legislation which would target… pro-Palestinian activists, I would vote against that legislation.”
CAIR-Florida later posted several photos to Facebook featuring Saadaldin leading and participating in the anti-Israel rally.
On December 13, 2017, Linda Sarsour endorsed Saadaldin’s candidacy for Florida’s House of Representatives on her Facebook page.
Prior to the election, Saadaldin gave a campaign interview with Joy Mann of Real Progress in Action that was uploaded to YouTube on December 26, 2017. During the interview, Saadaldin explained [00:05:36] that he was motivated to run for state government after [00:04:53] his USF SJP divestment petition failed to pass.
On December 19, 2017, Saadaldin came in third place out of four candidates in the special elections runoff.
On June 7, 2018, Saadaldin gave an interview with the anti-Israel magazine Palestine in America (PiA) about his 2017 campaign, where he stated that he had been “calling for divestment from the occupation of Palestine.” Saadaldin added that his campaign had been endorsed by the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA).
Peace House Demonizing Israel
On April 13, 2015, Saadaldin featured [00:02:20] in a Peace House video, titled: “Suppression’ trailer.” The video’s tagline said: “A documentary which aims to expose the suppression of organizers and activists that dare to speak out against the state of Israel.”
The video showcased Jewish anti-Israel activist and journalist Max Blumenthal who suggested [00:01:20] that Israel markets their arms export as having been field-tested on Palestinians, through [00:00:38] “70 years of dominating, controlling and attacking the restive indigenous population.”
In the video, Blumenthal accused [00:00:37] Israel of using the Israeli-Palestinian peace process as a way to buy [00:00:46] time for “building walls and settlements and laying siege to Gaza and buying time diplomatically to avoid the consequences of maintaining an apartheid state.”
Blumenthal then claimed [00:00:68]: “If you’re not Jewish, you’re going to be excluded, ghettoized …or in the case of these Africans, put in camps.”
In 2013, Israel completed a southern border wall, as well as migrant detainment facilities, following illegal immigration in the tens of thousands.
Blumenthal also accused [00:01:58] “the rising leaders of Israel [of] using genocidal rhetoric.”
Blumenthal is known for likening the modern-day democratic state of Israel to Nazi Germany.
Blumenthal’s 2013 book, “Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel,”was dubbed “The Israel Hater’s Handbook” by Eric Alterman of the progressive magazine The Nation.
The Peace House video also featured anti-Israel activist David Sheen suggesting [00:00:58] Israel is not a democracy and that “People of the Jewish religion have a preferred status, have extra rights and privileges” in Israel.
David Sheen is an anti-Israel activist and filmmaker who works to portray Israel as an extremist racist state. To this end, Sheen has been accused of purposefully mistranslating Hebrew articles and other media to make Israelis appear racist.
SJP USF – Spreading Anti-Semitism
On July 30, 2014, SJP USF posted an image to Facebook showing Adolf Hitler performing a Nazi salute with text reading: “WE ARE THE MASTER RACE,” next to an image of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with his hand raised and text reading: “WE ARE GOD’S CHOSEN PEOPLE.” SJP USF commented: “Justifications.”
On November 18, 2013, SJP USF reportedly hosted and sponsored a game show “about Palestinian culture, geography and history” modeled on the TV show, “Jeopardy!”
One question asked students to name the “type of poisons that Israeli settlers put in Palestinian water supplies to make them undrinkable,” a modern variation of an ancient blood libel. Another question suggested that Israel has been “snatching” Palestinian children from their beds.
SJP USF – Demonizing Israel
As of August 2019, an SJP USF Facebook post from February 14, 2015, remained on the group’s Facebook page. The original SJP USF shared an article and quoted the story’s headline: “Israeli authorities usually open the floodgates to their dams in the direction of the Gaza Strip – without prior notice – in order to discharge the enormous quantities of water that had accumulated due to the heavy rains in the region. #Gaza.”
Less than two weeks later, Al Jazeera retracted a similar story, noting: “In southern Israel, there are no dams of the type which can be opened.”
On February 25, 2016, SJP USF members reportedly joined with other BDS supporters to disrupt a talk at USF given by two Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers. One of the protesters called the soldiers “murderers and child killers” and was eventually was escorted out by police.
On September 5, 2014, SJP USF held an event titled: “The Hidden Genocide: The Story of Palestine.” The Facebook event page referred to Israel’s Operation Protective Edge (OPE) against Hamas earlier that year as a “summer of atrocious massacres.”
Israel commenced OPEin July 2014, to stop rocket fire targeting Israeli civilians and to destroy Hamas attack tunnels.
One of the speakers at the event was Hamas supporter Sheikh Monzer Taleb, who was an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF) terrorism finance trial. Taleb was not brought to trial.
However, five other defendants were brought to trial and were indicted for funneling funds to Hamas. These five, known as the Holy Land Five (HL5), were convicted and sentenced in 2009 to federal prison terms from 15 to 65 years.
SJP is a student organization engaged in anti-Israel activity on North American college and university campuses.
The first chapter of SJP was founded in 2001 at the University of California at Berkeley by Professor Hatem Bazian. Bazian has spread classic anti-Semitism, reportedly promoted religious anti-Semitism and defended the Hamas terror group. In 2004, Bazian called for “intifada” in America.
SJP organizes anti-Israel campaigns, including running annual Israel Apartheid Weeks, often in collaboration with Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and Muslim Students Association (MSA) campus chapters.
SJP has been a major force in pushing the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement on campuses. Chapters have initiated dozens of BDS resolutions in student governments, which have been proposed on or around Jewish holidays, a time when many Jewish students are off-campus.
SJP activists have reportedly physically assaulted, intimidated and harassed Jewish students, disrupted pro-Israel campus events and demonized pro-Israel campus organizations.
Chapters have often endorsed and campaigned for numerous terrorists and whitewashed terrorism.
The Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement was founded by Omar Barghouti in 2005 to challenge “international support for Israeli apartheid and settler-colonialism.” BDS is an allegedly “Palestinian-led movement,” although leading BDS activists have admitted [00:01:01] this is not true.
One of the demands of BDS includes [point 3] what is generally known as the “right of return,” a demand discredited as a way to eliminate Israel. Barghouti said the “right of return” is a means to “end Israel’s existence as a Jewish state.”
Barghouti has said that BDS “aims to turn Israel into a pariah state, as South Africa once was.”
In his activism, Barghouti has also said [00:05:55] regarding Israel: “Definitely, most definitely, we oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine. No…rational Palestinian, not a sellout Palestinian, will ever accept a Jewish state in Palestine.”
The movement has been linked to numerous terrorist organizations and received a public endorsement from Hamas in 2017.
BDS initiatives include calling on institutions and individuals to divest from Israeli-affiliated companies, promoting academic and cultural boycotts of Israel, and organizing anti-Israel rallies, protests and campaigns.
The movement’s most notable achievement has been the infiltration of university campuses through lobbying for “BDS resolutions.” In these cases, student governments and student groups, backed by their own anti-Israel members and affiliates, have proposed resolutions on some form of boycott of, or divestment from, Israel and Israeli-affiliated entities.
Boycott resolutions, although non-binding, have been passed by student governments on numerous North American campuses.
BDS activity is often aggressive and disruptive. It has been noted that universities that pass BDS resolutions see a marked increase in anti-Semitic incidents on campus. On one campus, when the student government debated a BDS resolution, reports emerged of violent threats against those opposing it.
Social Media and Weblinks
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/592235220 [Privated]