State and federal law enforcement officials are investigating the electronic distribution of a white supremacist manifesto to students at Syracuse University, the latest in a series of racist incidents that has left the upstate campus besieged.
The manifesto — an anti-Muslim screed circulated by the suspect accused of a mass killing in March in New Zealand — was posted to an online forum geared to those interested in Greek life at Syracuse University, and then sent to several students’ phones via a file-transfer service at a campus library, according to the university’s public safety department.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo called on the university’s board of trustees to hire an independent monitor “to effectively investigate these incidents.”
Cuomo was sharply critical of the university’s chancellor, Kent D. Syverud, saying in a statement the chancellor and other officials needed “to remedy the situation immediately.”
“They have not been handled in a manner that reflects this state’s aggressive opposition to such odious, reckless, reprehensible behavior,” the governor said of the racist incidents. “That these actions should happen on the campus of a leading New York university makes this situation even worse.”
University officials emphasized there was “no specific threat” associated with the manifesto, but nonetheless notified the State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The public safety department also doubled patrols around campus and residence halls.
In a midday news conference in Syracuse, the city’s police chief, Kenton T. Buckner, said the dissemination of the manifesto was being investigated as a crime, as was an earlier incident in which a swastika was drawn in a patch of snow.
“They have not been handled in a manner that reflects this state’s aggressive opposition to such odious, reckless, reprehensible behavior.” — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, on the racist incidents
As news of the manifesto spread, at least one professor on Tuesday reported a direct threat, received in her work email, calling her a Jewish slur and telling her to “get in the oven where you belong.” Other recent racially tinged acts on and around campus have included racist graffiti and other vandalism featuring racial slurs targeting black and Asian people.
Officials at the university have been working to address the outbreak of racist incidents: On Sunday, it suspended all social activities at fraternities for the rest of the semester, after a group of students, including members of one fraternity, accosted a female African-American student Saturday night, using a racial slur.
The university said it had identified the students involved and suspended the fraternity, Alpha Chi Rho, and would discipline the students to the “full extent of the law.”
The Daily Orange, the university’s independent student newspaper, said the manifesto that was distributed on campus was the same 74-page document — titled “The Great Replacement” — that the suspect in the New Zealand massacre, Brenton H. Tarrant, an Australian, is believed to have sent before killing more than 50 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.
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