Harvard Law School Professor Alan Dershowitz takes many controversial stands, including speaking out against the anti-Semitism of the BDS and Pinkwashing movements, and the lawfare against and the academic boycott of Israel.

Dershowitz also has broken liberal orthodoxy by defending Sarah Palin over her use of the term “blood libel,” and recently praising Ted Cruz as one of Harvard Law’s brightest students.

So there are many possibilities as to who would want to try to intimidate him by sending an envelope with white powder in it.  The tests came back negative, but not before his building was evacuated.

Matthew Q. Clarida and Samuel Y. Weinstock at the Harvard Crimson report.

White Powder in Envelope Prompts Evacuation at Law School

An envelope sent to Harvard Law School Professor Alan M. Dershowitz that was opened Thursday afternoon contained a suspicious white powder, prompting the evacuation of Hauser Hall’s fifth floor. An on-scene test and a laboratory test later in the evening both indicated that the substance was not dangerous.

Around 3 p.m., several law enforcement agencies and fire departments, including the Boston Fire Department’s hazardous materials team, arrived at the Law School.

According to Law School spokesperson Robb London, a faculty assistant for Dershowitz opened the letter and notified authorities after she saw that it contained white powder. London said that a preliminary test of the powder was negative for any substance that would have required further evacuation.

The Law School tweeted around 11 p.m. that a laboratory test conducted later in the evening did not indicate that the substance was hazardous and that Hauser Hall would reopen on Friday.

The assistant who opened the envelope, as well as three others who were present in the room, exhibited no apparent symptoms, though they continued to be monitored as of 6:15 p.m Thursday evening.

This is not the first time Dershowitz has received suspicious mail. London told The Crimson that the same faculty assistant opened a letter addressed to Dershowitz in January 2009 and discovered a white substance that turned out to be innocuous.