If you’ve ever wondered why American colleges and universities seem to disfavor the United States, a report from the New York Post may help explain why.
A new report shows that over 200 American universities, including so-called “elite” institutions such as Cornell, Harvard, and MIT, have raked in $13 billion in “undocumented contributions from foreign governments.”
The Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI) report noted that most of the funds were donated from authoritarian regimes around the world, including from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, China, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Moreover, the NCRI report claimed the donations were hidden from the US Department of Education between 2014 and 2019.
For example, Carnegie Mellon University, one of those named, received the most from foreign countries during that period, receiving $1.47 billion, while Cornell raked in $1.29 billion. The report said Harvard realized $894 million in “donations” while MIT scooped up $859 million.
Out of all donations, most came from Qatar, which contributed $2.7 billion. According to the report, England was second on the list, giving $1.4 billion. China gave $1.2 billion, while $1.1 billion came from Saudi Arabia. The UAE only gave $431 million.
The authors of the report issued a sobering conclusion, stating:
“...raises the sobering possibility that international actors are using undisclosed channels to funnel large amounts of money into college campuses (including elite institutions that often have outsized influence on American culture and politics) for purposes harmful to the democratic norms of pluralism, tolerance, and freedom.”
Indeed, one need only look at the mayhem being perpetrated on college campuses concerning the Hamas attack on Israel, and it seems clear that these foreign nations, especially authoritarian regimes around the globe, are having an impact on these institutions.
The report noted as much, writing there has “clearly been an erosion of democratic norms on campuses,” citing “a massive influx of foreign, concealed donations to American institutions of higher learning, much of it from authoritarian regimes with notable support from Middle Eastern sources, reflects or supports heightened levels of intolerance towards Jews, open inquiry, and free expression.”
The report also identified the explosion in incidents of antisemitism on college campuses during the 2014 to 2019 period when the donations exploded.
The incidents on college campuses have included one at Harvard, where a group of pro-Palestinian students surrounded a Jewish student on campus during a demonstration, and that of a Cornell professor who referred to the Hamas slaughter of Israeli citizens as “exhilarating” and “energizing.”
Recently, a Cornell student was arrested for making antisemitic threats, while numerous colleges have reported swastikas and anti-Jewish propaganda, racist emails, and threats made against Jewish students. University police departments have increased patrols to protect Jewish students and faculty.
As previously reported by Law Enforcement Today, Cornell has noted it received funding–more than $1.3 billion since 2012–to operate a medical school in Qatar, which has graduated over 500 students from the Middle East, Asia, and other countries, including the United States.
“We are proud of this collaboration that is helping to train much-needed doctors to support patient care, biomedical research, and overall quality of life. The remaining funding received supports medical and scientific research,” Joel Malina, vice president for university relations, said.
The other universities named have yet to respond to requests for comment from the Post.
The report noted that 203 colleges allegedly withheld information on the funds they receive from foreign entities from the federal government, which is illegal. In 2020, the federal government tightened its practices and required schools to report all funding sources.
It isn’t only authoritarian countries that pour money into US colleges and universities, with countries like Canada, Japan, Germany, India, and Switzerland also included.