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At the University of Southern California, Students for Justice in Palestine, threatened to shut down a planned speech by David Horowitz and were only prevented from doing so by the refusal of Horowitz’s hosts to admit them to the auditorium. They settled for screaming epithets outside. When Horowitz was invited to speak at the University of Texas, angry mobs of students led by Marxist professor Dana Cloud had to be removed before he could proceed with his address. While attempting to deliver a lecture on radical Islam at Emory University in 2007, Horowitz was constantly interrupted by protestors from several student organizations. The disruptions were so severe that his speech had to be cut short.
One likely factor in the suspension of the MSU, though it goes unmentioned in official accounts, is a campaign organized by students at Irvine to request rebates of their mandatory student fee monies used to fund an “Israeli Apartheid” hate week earlier in the semester. Approximately $6,500 in student funds were allocated to the Muslim Student Union for the event which was held May 10-13 on UCI’s campus. Speakers at the Apartheid Week included Amir-Abdel Malik-Ali, a radical Islamic leader who rallied students to support Hamas and Hezbollah, openly declared his support for Islamic jihad, and told students at his speech, “You Jews…ya’ll the new Nazis!”
The refund campaign was initiated by UCI student Joe Wolf, a third year Ph.D. candidate in physics, on May 24th. On that date, Wolf invited 56 UCI undergraduates to join a group on a Facebook site that provided information on how to request their refund. Within 12 hours, approximately 100 students had filled out the online refund form. Within two weeks, a total of 911 students, most of them non-Jews, had used the site to lodge official refund requests with the campus administration. UC Irvine policy allows for students to “seek a refund of that portion of his or her fee which he or she believes continues to support political, ideological, or religious organizations or activities.”
These students’ information has been sent to the chair of the ASUCI judicial branch, who recently contacted Wolf to say that their case is being reviewed.
Speaking on the decision to suspend the MSU, Joe Wolf commented, “I think that this decision is long overdue… After years of harassment and intimidation of Jewish students on the most anti-Semitic campus in the United States, it was only after MSU shot itself in the foot by disrupting Michael Oren’s speech that disciplinary actions have finally been internally recommended to the administration.”
Commenting on the UC Irvine decision, David Horowitz said, “The administration there has taken a rare and courageous stand in support of free speech and critical thought on campus. It is time for other universities to do the same and adopt an official policy recommending a one year suspension for any campus organization which obstructs an invited speaker.”
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