Columbia Professor Shai Davidai’s Family Tied to Weapons Manufacturing

Shai Davidai.

After throwing a foot-stomping tantrum earlier this morning, Shai Davidai, an untenured Columbia University business professor, was denied access to parts of campus.

A self-proclaimed Zionist, Davidai is an Israeli-American who served in the IDF (“proud of it”) and has continually harassed Columbia’s pro-Palestine activists, labeling them anti-semitic, pro-Hamas “terrorists.”

On several occasions, Davidai called for the National Guard to be brought in to brutalize pro-Palestine students. He’s even gone so far as to characterize Columbia protestors as “Hitler-youth.”

Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine have started a petition to have him fired.

There is a laundry list of complaints lodged against Davidai, most recently by 15 Jewish students at Columbia who were arrested and suspended last week during their occupation protest demanding the school divest from Israel.

In a Jewish Voice for Peace Instagram post, the students called out Davidai directly, writing:

“Futhermore, the disgraceful Shai Davidai publically called us Judenrat Kapost, and told us we would be on ‘the last train to Auschwitz.’ We do not feel safe with this professor still teaching on campus, having access to the Jewish community spaces we cherish, much less portraying himself as a valiant protector and spokesperson of Jews on campus while insulting our ancestors’ memory. Almost every suspended Jewish student lost family members in the Holocaust.”

Davidai comes from a long line of assholes. His father, Eli Davidai, is an Israeli business executive who served as General Manager of ARC, which describes itself as a “leading global advanced manufacturing service provider.”

According to ARC’s 2018 SEC filing:

“Eli Davidai, [ARC’s] General Manager of Operations as of May 2017, has been a Managing Director at QMI [Quadrant Management Inc.] since 1992, where he is responsible for making investments and overseeing companies at the firm.  Additionally, Mr. Davidai was elected to the Company’s Board of Directors on June 5, 2018.”

Among other things, ARC manufactures weapons parts, including “polymer magazine for NATO Compatible weapons,” “triggers and hammers,” “precision guided munitions components,” and more.

In 2016, ARC won an award for an AR-15 component and, in 2010, scored a prize for an “explosive device made for a Department of Defense application.”

ARC also makes parts for MCX and MPX rifles, which are used by the Israeli military.

As you probably guessed by his crybaby antics, Shai’s parents are disgustingly rich. Eli and his wife, Zohara Davidai, sponsored The Davidai Arrhythmia Center in Tel Hashomer, Israel, where Benjamin Netanyahu was fitted for a pacemaker last year.

Interestingly, as @cholent_lover exposed on X, Eli Davidai has had a long business relationship with Alan Quasha, CEO of Quadrant Management, who also serves on the Board of Directors of ARC. Quasha is an interesting character, an international businessman and a billionaire venture capitalist.

Quasha has been involved in everything from Harken Energy (where George W. Bush was accused of insider trading as he sat on Harken’s Board) to dealings with the Saudis, US intelligence, and even the Clintons.

Quasha is also the founder of Quadrant Security Strategies, which “makes equity investments in innovative and emerging private companies that support US National Security.”

To top it off, Shai Davidai’s grandfather, Benny Davidai (a founder of El Al Airlines), was a notorious strikebreaker.

The apple doesn’t fall far, as they say.

Meanwhile, as Davidai claims it’s unsafe for him on campus, Columbia faculty (including Jewish faculty members) walked out this afternoon in a massive show of solidarity with student protestors.

Image by Columbia University, Associate Professor Hiba Bou Akar.

JOSHUA FRANK is the managing editor of CounterPunch. He is the author of the new book, Atomic Days: The Untold Story of the Most Toxic Place in America, published by Haymarket Books. He can be reached at joshua@counterpunch.org. You can troll him on Twitter @joshua__frank.