I paid a visit to the UCLA campus last week to cover the Muslim Student Association’s Palestine Awareness Week. I gathered together an initial report featuring an interview with UCLA’s campus organizer Hamzah Baig, as well as photos from the student demonstrations: “Israeli Apartheid Week, Students for Justice in Palestine, UCLA, February 23, 2011.” Upon additional reflection, the day’s events formed an essential learning experience for me. This was my first time attending Israeli Apartheid Week at any of the California campuses. Not knowing what to expect, I mainly hoped to gather some information for a couple of blog posts. I did that, and more: I came away with the experiential knowledge that our premiere public universities are aiding and abetting Islamist jihad and the global neo-communist campaign for the extermination of Israel.
Here’s the quote from my earlier entry, on my interview with UCLA’s Hamzah Baig, the lead organizer for Students for Justice in Palestine. After arriving and saying hello to the young students from Bruins for Israel, I approached the Muslim activists:
I said hello to a couple of the young ladies, and I asked if I could speak with their lead organizer. I was pointed in the direction of a burly young man named Hamzah Baig. I introduced myself and asked if he’d take questions. He asked “Who’s this for”? And I told him I was a blogger with David Horowitz’s NewsReal Blog. That didn’t seem to phase him at first, so the interview started out pretty casually. I asked him what the goals were for Palestinian Awareness Week. He said that the group wanted to stop Israeli settlements of Palestinian lands and to “end the occupation.” Then I asked, “what occupation”? And he said “the West Bank.” Okay, I thought, hmm, how about a couple of more challenging questions? So I said “Does your group support terrorism against Israelis?” And Baig practically choked on his Arafat scarf. He told me he wanted to be quoted precisely, and then enunciated very slowly, “our group provides no support for terrorism whatsoever.” And I said, oh yeah? What about Hamas? Do you support them? He said, “yeah, sure.” And I said, but Hamas is a known terrorist organization. I then mentioned David Horowitz’s confrontation with Jumanah Imad Albahri at UC San Diego. And I noted that she wouldn’t denounce Hamas and called for the extermination of the Jews. But by this time Baig was getting uptight. He said that “our group has nothing to do with the MSA at UC San Diego. They’re totally separate for us.” And I said, but aren’t you guys MSA here at UCLA? And he said, “yeah, sure, were MSA, but we’re separate.” I said fine, “will you renounce Hamas right now, will your reject Hamas”? He said “we support Hamas programs of education, food and medicine.” “What about terrorism”?, I said. And he again hesitated to respond. I thanked him and asked him if I could take his picture, but he refused. By now he was getting hostile at the questioning and wanted to be away from me. I said, “Why”? “This is a public event, at a public university — why don’t you want to be photographed”? And he just waved me away with his arms and said “no pictures.”
As I detailed previously, the discussion turned from an interview to a confrontation. Hamzah Baig became angry as I took more pictures of the Students for Justice in Palestine. Mr. Baig said “You are harassing my people.” I told him he was harassing me and trying to suppress the truth. I was calling out his pro-terror racket.
I thought about this later, how the Muslim students were not only hostile to scrutiny, but extremely belligerent as well. Clearly the group has much to hide. And noticing how Mr. Baig was so emphatic in denying his group’s ties to terrorism, I decided to do a little research. It’s well-known, of course, that the Muslim Students Association is a front-group for the Muslim Brotherhood (see the entry at Discover the Networks, for example). But the UCLA cell downplays MSA, using the newer title, “Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA.” Well, I found a report from the Anti-Defamation League with additional background. It turns out the Students for Justice in Palestine are being organized by Americans for Muslims in Palestine, which is another Muslim Brotherhood front group:
Since June 2010 … a national organization called American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), a group that promotes extreme anti-Israel views, has decided to focus specifically on Palestinian advocacy on college campuses and targeted SJP for this effort.
Looking further, I found the video clip for “SJP at UCLA – Teachin for Palestine Awareness Week 2011.” At the screencap from the video is Hamzah Baig introducing Taher Herzallah, the president of UC Riverside’s Students for Justice in Palestine and a National Campus Coordinator for American Muslims for Palestine:
Taher Herzallah is also one of the original “Irvine 11″, the group of militant Islamists who shouted down Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren at UC Irvine last year. Herzallah published a widely-circulated defense of the group at the Orange County Register, “Heckling Israeli Ambassador at UCI Was Right.”
Of course, it doesn’t take a lot of research to find ties between Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA and the Muslim Brotherhood. The group’s Facebook page indicates that Amir Abdel Malik was the featured speaker at UCLA on February 23rd. But recall earlier this month Abdel Malik was captured on video at the MSA West regional conference leading the organization in a pledge of allegiance to the Muslim Brotherhood. His racist diatribes are legendary, and his frequent anti-Semitic campus lectures have even been repudiated by the far left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center (a group that’s no friend to the counter-jihad movement).
There was another thing that stayed with me from my visit to UCLA. The Apartheid Wall was perhaps the most grotesque monument to propaganda I’ve ever seen. The lasting image I have is of the panel featuring Leila Khaled, who is member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) — and was thus a key militant of the Palestinian Black September movement in the years before the Munich Olympics. At the time she was famously photographed holding an AK-47 rifle and wearing a kaffiyeh, which is the picture from the Apartheid Wall at the top of this essay. Khaled was one of terrorists who hijacked TWA Flight 840 in 1969, and her photogenic beauty earned her the reputation as the “poster girl of Palestinian militancy.” And while those events were over 40 years ago, Khaled to this day remains committed to armed struggle against Israel. In an interview featured at the Middle East Media Research Institute, she declared her commitment to the Palestinian right of return, and the cause of Islamist jihad against Israel’s right to exist:
We will set the streets ablaze …
The ultimate goal of the struggle is the establishment of a Palestinian state on the land of Palestine, within the 1967 borders, including Jerusalem …
But this is just one stage – not everything. Ultimately, we have the right to return to Palestine – all Palestine …
If you use force, the enemy withdraws. When the occupier begins to feel that the occupation is costly, what does he do? He withdraws.
A terrorist who wants to set Israel ablaze and return all of Palestine to her people.
So, as the image of Leila Khaled’s armed resistance appeared prominently during Palestine Awareness Week, along with the other documentation provided in this report, perhaps folks might want to reexamine Hamzah Baig’s claim that Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA “provides no support for terrorism whatsoever.”