Letter to UCI Administrators on Rejection of Wallenberg Statue


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Editor’s note: Below is a letter written by Phil Orenstein to UC Irvine administrators regarding UCI’s rejection of the Wallenberg Statue. It seeks to push back against and to expose the hostile anti-Semitic climate on the UCI campus. See Jamie Glazov’s Frontpage interview with Peter Lancz on “The Raoul Wallenberg World Campaign against Racism,” here.)

Dear Dean Lewis, President Yudof, and Chancellor Drake,

As a former college lecturer and current member of the National Conference on Jewish Affairs, I find it appalling and perplexing that University of California, Irvine would summarily reject, without explanation, the proposal for the erection of a commemorative Wallenberg statue on the University of California, Irvine campus (1). This would have served as an exemplary educational tool to teach the majority of the student body vastly unfamiliar with the heroic deeds of Raoul Wallenberg, the Swedish diplomat who risked his life to save 100,000 Hungarian Jews from Nazi death camps (2).

Peter Lancz, son of Hungarian master sculptor, Paul Lancz who was saved by Wallenberg himself, had originally proposed to University of California president Mark Yudof that the statue be erected on the UC Irvine campus, which has in recent years become notorious for rampant anti-Semitic hate speech and obstruction of pro-Israel speakers. This stellar opportunity, funded through outside donors, has now been discarded, further tarnishing the reputation of UC Irvine.

During this centennial celebration year of Wallenberg’s birth, Peter Lancz is spearheading a nationwide effort to raise awareness and keep the memory of this true hero and savior alive, fulfilling his father’s dream of fighting bigotry and anti-Semitism on campus, which in his own words is “the cancer of the human soul.” The proposal was forwarded to UC Irvine Chancellor Michael Drake, and finally sent on to the Claire Trevor School of the Arts to be considered by the Public Art Program Council.

How ironic that a few days after the rejection letter, the Claire Trevor School of the Arts hosted a conference of rabid anti-Israel artists and filmmakers entitled “…and Europe will be stunned: The Jewish Renaissance Movement in Poland,” envisioning the return of over three million Jews to Poland (3). This is not an actual political movement, but an artistic project to demonize Israel by deconstructing Zionism as the malicious product of European propaganda, “at the price of bringing a disaster upon the people already inhabiting that land” in the words of one of the speakers. Now anti-Semitic hate speech is considered rational discourse and even merits an arts conference espousing, under the umbrella of institutionalized “academic freedom” the proposition that Israel has no right to exist.

But the Wallenberg rejection further exposes “the cancer of the human soul” long entrenched at UC Irvine. The arts conference was bland compared to the epidemic of virulent hate speech and anti-Semitic attacks on the UC Irvine campus, that Judea Pearl, father of Daniel Pearl, journalist murdered by Islamic terrorists, called the “proving grounds for a nationally orchestrated Israel-defamation campaign.” Throughout the school year and especially during “Israel Apartheid Week” extremist speakers call for terrorist attacks on Israel and jihad against the United States. Imam Amir-Abdel Malik-Ali, a notorious supporter of Hamas, Hezbollah and al-Qaeda, has spoken at UCI numerous times, calling for the destruction of the “apartheid state of Israel,” comparing Jews to Nazis, and going on long anti-Semitic tirades about the “disproportionate numbers of Jews, Zionist Jews, in the media, in finance and foreign policy.” He preached suicide bombing of Israel to a campus audience saying: “That ain’t suicide, that’s martyrdom.” This is pure incitement to violence against Jews and it has precipitated hostile attacks, rock throwing and desecration of a Holocaust memorial on campus (4).

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  • Anamah

    Shame on you California University , net of racist antisemites and despicable people. You are unable to understand the greatness of an hero as Raoul Wallenberg!

  • effemall

    Instead of addressing the college it would be more effective and informative to the public by addressing individuals at the college who personally are responsible for this Antisemitism. Unmask them.

  • maturin20

    Why are you trying to bully a university into building a socialist realism statue commemorating the Holocaust if they DON'T WANT ONE? They didn't commission this tacky piece. It was proposed, and they don't want it. They didn't propose it. Now, they have to wear the scarlet letter of antisemitism until they accept this bad art about this obscure guy or face constant media harassment? Ridiculous!

    • kentatwater

      socialist realism statue

      Wow. I know about fun house mirrors, but I didn't know they made fun house prisms, too!

      According to the sculptor's son:

      My father always liked to compare his Wallenberg to a modern day, Michaelangelo’s ‘David’ sculpture in terms of the expressiveness and forcefulness of character evinced in its physiognomy.

      That Michaelangelo…he was a sneaky pinko, huh?

      • maturin20

        Of course he would have liked to compare his sculptures to the works of Michaelangelo.

        • kentatwater

          Instead of some more contemporary lefty artist, selected on a doctrinaire basis? Now, would a good socialist do such a thing? Heavenless forbid!

          • maturin20

            The artwork remains butt-ugly and unsolicited.

          • kentatwater

            Your opinion certainly fits that description.

          • maturin20

            I'm known for being self-aware.

          • kentatwater

            Not by people here.

          • maturin20

            I'm not responsible for the ignorance of others. I leave that to folks like Robert Spencer.

          • kentatwater

            It is manifestly obvious, you have your hands full with your own ignorance.

          • maturin20

            At least I am not thrusting my ugly bust at a university.

          • kentatwater

            Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some find no beauty in rescuing thousands from butchery, provided those saved are "undesirable."

          • maturin20

            Whether or not the university accepts foisted artwork has no direct relation to the beauty of preventing genocide.

          • kentatwater

            There's that weasel word, "direct."

          • maturin20

            Even if it is merely tangentally related, it in no way justifies trying to shame a university into hosting unwanted soviet realist art.

          • kentatwater

            unwanted soviet realist art.

            It's not often you see a straw man fishing for red herring.

          • maturin20

            OK, so what style do you say the sculpture is?

          • kentatwater

            Lanczian.

          • maturin20

            That's impertinent. What distinguishes his style? Nothing. That he uses bronze? No. That it looks like the Human Torch on crack? No. So what?

          • kentatwater

            Impertinent? Hardly. Merely representative of the level of effort worthy of your query. You want to apply a label because it suits your effort to defame, but denigrate others' use of labels when it does not serve your rhetorical needs. I'd describe your style as post-sentient hypocrite.

          • maturin20

            "Hypocrite?!" That's anti-semitic. Clearly you lifted that from the book of Matthew and Jesus' tirade against the Pharisees. Abraham Foxman has rightfully condemned this kind of jew-hating passion playing!

          • kentatwater

            No need to cite literature more in-depth than "The Boy Who Cried Wolf."

          • maturin20

            Stop slandering Paul Wolfowitz and Wolf Blitzer!

          • kentatwater

            Blitzer doesn't need my help with his own slandering. He's blitzes his credibility whenever he opens his mouth. It's something you and he have in common.

          • maturin20

            That's antisemitic! He was one of Yeshiva University's finest graduates.

          • kentatwater

            No, he wasn't.

          • maturin20

            Pardon me. Hebrew University.

          • kentatwater

            Pardon you for what? Reflexively asserting that a Jew must have gone to Yeshiva? Fine. You're pardoned.

          • maturin20

            How dare you pardon me? I am an enemy of Israel. You're antisemitic!

          • kentatwater

            You said it, not me.

          • maturin20

            You refused to say it! You condoned me! That makes you an enemy of Israel.

          • kentatwater

            About as accurate as your other bon mots.

          • maturin20

            Mmmmm! I love bon mots!

          • kentatwater

            This is mani-
            festly evident.

    • reader

      socialist realism? obscure guy? bad art? you think that this is a very clever way of trolling your Jew hating on this site, maturin? actually, you are more transparent than you're trying to be.

      • maturin20

        I always give 110%.

        • aspacia

          110% of 0 is 0

          • maturin20

            Thanks to Arab science, yes.

          • aspacia

            No, etymology fraction is from Latin meaning fracture.

          • maturin20

            Don't be fractious. I was referring to the concept of 0.

          • kentatwater

            That would be the Indians, not Arabs.

          • aspacia

            Thank-you kentatwarter.

            Typical of maturin and many other liberals who claim to be intelligent, but in fact are quite ignorant like Joyce Bayer (sp) George Clooney, etc.

          • maturin20

            Haven't you read Al-Khwarizmi's Compendious Book of Calculations?

          • aspacia

            maturin,

            Who cares that Arabs did produce 900 years ago. What have they produced recently except violence. Besides, I am an English/Historian major.

          • maturin20

            Would you accept a similar "What have you done for me lately" approach towards Chinese, African and Greco-Roman achievements? As in "Who cares that Archimedes discovered the basics of hydrostatics?"

            Recently, they've produced some damn fine music and literature. Rachid Taha and Naguib Mahfouz spring to mind. Many of them have become superb geologists and petrologists, for the obvious reasons.

            You don't think an English/History major need be acquainted with the history of science?

          • aspacia

            You missed my point! The Chinese are rational actors who do not produce religious fanatics who go about murdering critics like Muslims do. Basically, the Chinese have learned that Communism does not work as their one child policy produced devastating results.

            I do know some science and some science history, and enjoy Omni and Discover, but that was not the point.

            You are a multiculturalist and simply do not realize that during certain period of time some civilizations are superior to others. They produce more, and have superior citizens to the rest of the world.

            Currently, the West is superior, and I prefer Western Civilization to ME barbarity. If you prefer ME social norms, move there, otherwise quit apologizing for their violence mostly against helpless civilians.

            Just as so many liberals and Marxists have learned, you will be targeted if Sharia comes into power, and know this is what most of the 1 billion Muslims want.

          • maturin20

            The Chinese are rational actors? If they have learned that communism doesn't work, why is the CCP their ruling party? And you speak of their one child policy in the past tense, though it is still in effect throughout the country.

            What was not the point? That science has been a global endeavor, now more than ever?

            What does it mean to be a superior citizen? How is the West superior to the rest of the world?

            I think, as most everyone does, that there is virtually no chance of Sharia law ever becoming the norm in Western society. It requires an inordinate amount of fear and insecurity to believe otherwise.

          • aspacia

            China is no long truly communist, now it is a capitalist dictatorship. It is changing its one child policy because of the disproportionate number of young men to women.

            The point is that currently, the ME has produced nothing but terror. You made a false analogy between China and the ME.

            Currently, the West has the superior civilization. Most civilian have food, shelter and sanitation. Our laws are passed by our representative government, not by whim of a dictator. Most of our poor are overweight from their lousy diets. Now, look at the poor in other lands.

            Sharia Law is already being honored in the USA, which is a Constitutional violation.

          • maturin20

            Your insights on China are appreciated.

            Whence the lousy diet of the Western poor?

            Please cite where Sharia law is being honored in the USA.

          • aspacia

            The recent Judge Martin ruling in PA.

          • aspacia

            Why support an ethnic group who beheads, stones people, discriminates against gays, women and nonMuslims. Recently, a young man was stoned to death for wearing a western haircut.

          • maturin20

            Horrible. What was his name, where did this happen?

            Large ethnic groups don't usually care if people outside the group support them or not. They run on their own inner fire. "Remove the plank from your own eye" is a wise principle.

          • aspacia

            Peruse the number of terrorist attacks against civilians and 99% stem from Muslims. It is you who is blind and cowardly.

          • aspacia

            maturin, read other news besides the lame stream media which reports nothing until it cannot be ignored. I knew about the 2005 Muslim riots in France weeks before it was reported in our media. I know this because I asked numerous teachers if they had heard about the riots and everyone of those asked said: "No."

          • maturin20

            Just to check, you don't remember the young man's name or where this occurred?

            What is a terrorist attack?

            What did you gain by knowing about the 2005 riots weeks before it was reported in US media?

          • aspacia

            maturin,

            As long as you are civil, I will converse with you, so keep this civil.

            The numerous ME stonings, beheadings, maimings, honor murders are not reported on our alphabet media, or liberal blogs, but thousands occur every year. Here is one link on the stoned boy, but there are many others with graphic images: http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/iraqi-teenag

            A terrorist attack is an attack by those not wearing uniforms and covertly or not covertly sponsored by a nation or state.

            I learned that our media whitewashes, omits and uses duplicitous language when they do not like the facts of violence stemming from a minority or Muslim. Albeit, they love to report violence stemming from the West and make a huge deal of perhaps 3 white terrorist attacks or Israel defending herself. Read Honest Reporting for the facts about the libels and slanders regarding Israel.

          • maturin20

            Gad, that's horrible. Poor Iraq.

            Covertly or not covertly? So, it's an attack without uniforms? How would you distinguish between a terrorist attack and a criminal attack?

            How do we identify accuracy in the media? How do you distinguish between truth and a whitewash?

          • aspacia

            Terrorism often occurs in the forms of violence perpetrated against civilians for a political or religious ideology. It is a deliberate attempt to terrorize the general populations of a land. Think the Weather Underground, Mc Vey, al Qaeda, et al,

            Criminal activity is usually for monetary gain, Al Capone, Bugsy Segal, et al.

            Carefully read both side of the media and their attacks. For example Media Matters is attacking Fox; Mathews call people of faith cultists, Beck and others retaliate using facts, albeit but they too miss the target. My point is know both sides to understand what the facts are.

          • maturin20

            So terror attacks are violent attacks against civilians in the name of an ideology? Is that a fair definition?

            What if there are more than two sides of an issue? How do you reach the facts of the matter?

          • aspacia

            Terrorists do not wear uniforms and usually attack target unarmed civilians of any age causing terror. That is, terrorists cannot win in open combat against hard targets, so they attack soft targets.

            Arabs have lost in every war against tiny Israel and they are dishonored.

            Read about the issue in depth before making a decision. You made a your decision about Israel without reading the proIsrael claims.

          • maturin20

            How do you claim to know how I reached my opinion on Israel on Palestine? Were you watching over my shoulder?

    • Sage on the Stage

      If someone suggests that Queen Elizabeth visit Israel this year(her 60th anniversary Jubilee), are they
      trying to bully her into going to Israel?

  • Ken

    Raoul Wallenberg is hero in every sense of the word. His legacy is one that should be taught in every school, everywhere, as an example to follow. The university system in California, in which I live and grew up, is tainted by the uber-Left, radical Progressive academia with its agenda to indoctriniate students into its way of thought. It is also pervasive in the grade school system, as well. That being said, I extremely doubt that Raoul Wallenberg will get the recognition and admiration he deserves for his actions that save so many lives. At least not in California.

  • http://garyfouse.blogspot.com gary fouse

    The statue should have been built on the patio area next to the politically-correct Cross Cultural center, which the MSU have "requisitioned" for prayers, posters and hanging out.

  • MrZZ

    To comrad maturin:__The Motherland of "socialist realism" – Soviet Russia – arrested and eventually killed "an obscure guy" Raoul Wallenberg for helping the Jews. Descendants of staff members of Soviet Secret Police (aka Che Ka, GPU, NKVD, KGB and FCS) are spread all over the world and appear even on conservative blogs, like this one. Institutional anti-Semitism in Russia is so deeply entrenched, that they support muslim governments dispite their own troubles with muslims (in Chechnya, Center Asia and others) just because the muslim governments are against the State of Israel and also, are enemies of USA.__Shame on UC system for aligning themself not only with swarn enemies of Jews and Americans!

    • maturin20

      And yet, the statue looks like a gaudy piece of bad soviet art. And sure, there is institutional anti-semitism in Russia but there also swindlers like Khodorkofsky who try to make off with the entire national infrastructure in his pocket. Do you really claim that the NKVD is lurking this website and supporting Muslims? That's far fetched. If so, whom? All of these wild theories aside, why should a university be forced to accept and display an unsolicited piece of bad art?

      • kentatwater

        With rhetoric like this, one takes away the observation that the preferred form of neo-Nazi sculpture, is the straw man.

        • maturin20

          Pre hoc ergo post hoc fallacy.

          • kevin s

            Post hoc ergo propter hoc

          • maturin20

            Pope hocks post helicopter rock.

      • aspacia

        It is no worse than most of the following on this link: https://www.google.com/search?q=modern+statues&am

        Art is in the eye of the beholder. I dislike cubism, others love it.

        The point is, that this statue is a tribute to a courageous man who saved Jews, and the UCI campus suffering from a pandemic of antiSemitism.

        • maturin20

          Courageous people abound in history. How do we determine which of them get statues and where those statues are placed?

  • Ghostwriter

    I agree that the statue of Raoul Wallenberg should be put in the UCI campus. I also think that Mr. Wallenberg's story should be better known. This man was given honorary U.S. citizenship. Few people have been so honored by such a thing. Of course,his fate remains a mystery. What is known is that the Russians arrested him. Nobody knows what happened to him afterward. It's sad that people like maturin20 doesn't care to learn more about this courageous man. But to this clown and those like him,they don't see Jews as people. They see them as insects to be squashed. Maybe maturin20 should look this guy up. Who knows? This guy might develop a heart.

    • maturin20

      I agree that Mr. Wallenberg's story should be better known, although I don't think he did us a great favor by saving Tom Lantos. Apparently the twenty-odd memorials to his name are not enough though, and universities need to be approached and have his bust foisted on them or else suffer the rage of The Lobby.

    • Ken

      I doubt it!! His strident anti-Semitism won't allow it!! I think his heart is smaller than the Grinch's.

      • maturin20

        Microcardiac dysfunction is nothing to laugh at, you star-bellied freak.

        • Ken

          Nice to see uber-Lefties remain consistent. I see the conversation, at least on your side, has now de-evolved into name-calling. Typical.

          • maturin20

            And topical. Like analgesic cream.

  • steven L

    The treatment of Blacks and color people in North America was and remains shameful. This being said, slavery was long before and is still today practiced by Muslims. Why is there no anger towards the Muslims who continue to kill women and blacks? Why the women of the left remain dead-silent?
    Despite all the complains from the left and other fanatical morons, the US is the most advanced country in the whole world in term of social engineering. Shame on those people who think that the grass is greener in their land. They are fanatical ignorant and should go back for a reality check.
    There is a lot of work to do, and fanatics are the enemies.

    • aspacia

      There is fear that causes a huge stench in the liberal community, along with the fact that many do not practice proper hygiene.

      Frankly, just as the Southpark producers, they fear for their lives because the police do nothing about Muslim death threats. Spence, Geller, Darwish, et al, all are often threatened, and our police do nothing.

  • Brujo Blanco

    This man saved peolple from being murdered. The problem is that Jew hatred is being taught in colleges and universities to people who are our future leaders. If their words are turned into actions their will be violence committed against Jews and people that come to their defense.

  • g_jochnowitz

    How can anyone oppose honoring Wallenberg? How can blacks be unmoved by the history of slavery among Muslims? Why are feminists anti-Israel? Why are gays anti-Israel? It can't be explained. It has to be a miracle–a negative miracle.
    There IS a God, and He's an embittered anti-Semite. He is hardening the hearts of the world against the Jews. http://www.jochnowitz.net/Essays/AfterTheBinding….

  • WilliamJamesWard

    UCI administrators just do not care and if it is offensive to Jewish sensitivities well to bad they control
    and Obama won. The day of honoring honorable people may be over, today it is honoring the most
    despicable and dishonorable people imaginable and they are the heros of the left. If it was a bust of
    Mao or Lennin it would have been done in a NY second…………………………William

    • Ken

      Che is probably next up for the honor in California. You know, the guy who murdered or ordered the murder of thousands of people!!

      • WilliamJamesWard

        Yes Ken they probably will and the Castro brothers and possibly if allowed install their tombs
        there under…………………………………William

  • maghrebchristians

    Egypt’s influential Maspero Youth Union – a Coptic Christian youth organization – has announced it is to demonstrate against a recent spat of rulings that have jailed Christians in the country for allegedly “insulting” Islam and illegal construction of churches.

    Read more: http://www.maghrebchristians.com/2012/03/12/copti

    Youssef