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UI Cancels Project in Israel Because of Gaza War

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — As the Gaza war rages, a number of colleges have decided to cancel overseas study projects in Israel. That includes the University of Iowa.

Through a Department of Religious Studies program, a handful of students were scheduled to spend six weeks excavating at Tel Azekah. It’s about 30 miles northeast of Gaza.

Too close for comfort for the university who canceled the trip in July.

Professor Robert Cargill, who organizes the event each year, said it was the right choice to make.

“It obviously throws a monkey wrench into everybody’s plans. People have saved a lot of money, spent a lot of money, but it was the right decision. Safety must come first,” Cargill said.

Critics think universities like Iowa are overreacting. The head of the Association for Jewish Studies noted to the Associated Press most of Israel is protected by military superiority over Hamas and a sophisticated anti-missile system.

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