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November 23, 2015

Anti-Semite Claims Prominent BDS Activist Invited Him To Berkeley Conference

Anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist Kevin Barrett claims he was accepted to present a paper at the 3rd Islamophobia and Civil Society Conference in Paris, sponsored by University of California, Berkeley’s Center for Race & Gender.

Kevin Barrett's GoFundMe page

Kevin Barrett’s GoFundMe page

The conference, which appears to have recently been canceled, was organized by BDS activist and Berkeley professor Hatem Bazian, the Chairman of American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), the leading organization providing anti-Zionist training and education to students and Muslim community organizations in the country.

Barrett, a former University of Wisconsin-Madison instructor, is a fre­quent con­trib­u­tor to Iran’s Eng­lish lan­guage pro­pa­ganda news net­work Press TV and Vet­er­ans Today, a U.S.-based web­site that presents anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­ries as news. Even Barrett himself seems surprised he was accepted to present at Bazian’s conference. On his GoFundMe page, where he has raised $2,175 to fund his trip to Paris, he wrote, “Amazingly, I just had a hard-hitting, truth-telling paper accepted for a mainstream academic conference: The 3rd Islamophobia and Civil Society Conference to be held in Paris December 11th-12th 2015.” Barrett hoped that by presenting at the conference, he could send the message, “Keep our universities open to people who are willing to think taboo thoughts and ask the hard questions!”

In Barrett’s synopsis of the paper he was accepted to present, titled “Taboo on Questioning: Silencing the Muslim Other,” he alludes to his typical anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. In a discussion on whether the January 2015 terror attacks at the Charlie Hebdo office and a kosher supermarket in Paris were “largely fabricated by Western security agencies to mobilize public opinion for a war on Islam,” Barrett examines questions like “What are we to make of Netanyahu’s repeated threats during the run-up to the shootings that if France recognized or sided with Palestine it would be hit by terrorists?”

Trying to blame Jews or Israel for acts of terrorism is nothing new for Barrett. Some recent examples of his anti-Semitic conspiracy theories include:

  • In a Novem­ber 13 Vet­er­ans Today arti­cle titled “Another French False Flag?” Bar­rett states that “Since we now know the Char­lie Hebdo attack was a…false flag by the usual sus­pects (NATO hard­lin­ers and Zion­ists), can we safely make the same assump­tion about these new Fri­day the 13th Paris atroc­i­ties? I think we can.” Bar­rett added “The first ques­tion, as always, is: Who gains? And the answer, as always, is: Author­i­tar­ian insid­ers. Zion­ists. Mil­i­tarists. Islam­o­phobes. New World Order-Out-Of-Chaos freaks.”
  • In Barrett’s book We Are Not Char­lie Hebdo! Free Thinkers Ques­tion the French 9/11 he claims that the January Paris attacks were just one in a long his­tory of events – such as the 9/11 attacks and the 2001 anthrax poi­son­ings – per­pe­trated by Israel in order to “incite hatred of Mus­lims and sol­i­dar­ity with Israel.”
  • In a Jan­u­ary 20 Press TV article titled “Zion­ist NWO mur­ders Iran­ian gen­eral, Amer­i­can film­maker,” Barrett claims that “The Zion­ists cre­ated ISIL and sent it to fight Mus­lims and Chris­tians in Syria and Iraq…New World Order Zion­ism is also tar­get­ing the USA for destruction.”
  • Bar­rett stated in a Feb­ru­ary 17 Press TV arti­cle titled “9/11 attack was Zion­ist coup d-etat to seize power in US: Scholar” that “…Zion­ist pre-emptive mur­der­ers excel at ‘killing the future’…A team of Zionist-liked pro­fes­sional killers exe­cuted a total of 77 peo­ple [2011 attacks in Norway], while Zionist-freemasonic assets in the Nor­we­gian police and mil­i­tary stood by.”
  • In the same Feb­ru­ary 2015 arti­cle Bar­rett stated that “The Sep­tem­ber 11, 2001 attacks in the United States were a Zion­ist ‘coup d’etat’ to seize power in the coun­try and launch a per­ma­nent war on Islam on behalf of Israel…”

 

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April 1, 2015

50% of Anti-Israel Events in Illinois on Three Campuses

Anti-Israel activity on university and college campuses in Illinois has remained steady over the last two years with student-groups actively working to promote Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns against Israel and false allegations such as that Israel is an apartheid state.

Tweets from pro-BDS students during and after the BDS vote at Loyola University.

Since September 2013, more than 70 anti-Israel events have taken place on university and college campuses in Illinois and over 50% of those events were held on three campuses: Loyola University-Chicago, DePaul University, and Northwestern University. So far this year, there have been two divestment resolutions passed by student governments at Loyola University and Northwestern University and 25 anti-Israel events have either taken place or been scheduled on Illinois campuses.

Leading up to the BDS vote at Loyola University, there was a week-long program called “Loyola Divestment Week,” which featured several events promoting BDS and the “Loyola Divest” campaign. Examples of those events included discussions about divestment, a “Palestine 101” session which provided historical context about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and a conversation titled “Reclaiming Our Voices through Social Activism.”

ADL described the Loyola Divest effort as “misguided” and stated that it will likely serve to “divide and polarize the campus community.”

The polarizing effect of the resolution could be witnessed during the voting session and after its passage, as students reacted on Twitter with the hashtag “#LoyolaDivest.” One student remarked during the vote that there were a “handful of privileged white people on one side of room” and that the “rest of humanity [was] on [the] other.” Another student echoed that tweet and wrote “Never understood ‘white tears’ more than now –white jewish students are ‘uncomfortable’ while the Palestinians are suffocating,” and another student celebrated that the campus Hillel allegedly lost members “because #divestment made them uncomfortable and afraid,” stating that, “That’s a win for #LoyolaDivest no one should join Hillel.”

Northwestern University, the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter formed a group called “NU Divest” which worked to promote divestment. Leading up to the Student Government’s vote on their BDS resolution, the group sponsored several anti-Israel events such as a presentation from Hatem Bazian, a founder of American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), on Friday, February 13, 2015 titled  “Colonialism is not Over: Contemporary Movements.” The group also published pro-BDS articles in the campus newspaper to inform their student-body about the BDS campaign and on Wednesday, February 18, 2015, the student government voted to pass their BDS resolution with a 24-22-3 vote.

The BDS campaign at DePaul University was also active this semester because of the campus-wide BDS referendum that was passed by a vote of 1,575-1,333 on May 23, 2014. To follow up on the vote, the DePaul Divest coalition submitted a request to the DePaul Fair Business Practices Committee (FBPC) in January 2015 and asked them to recommend that DePaul divest from Hewlett-Packard, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Veolia, and Caterpillar. The proposal was reportedly rejected by the FBPC.

Flyer from DePaul University SJP Fundraiser for Rasmea Odeh.

Flyer from DePaul University SJP Fundraiser for Rasmea Odeh.

The SJP chapters at both Loyola and DePaul also hosted events to defend and discuss the case of Rasmea Odeh, a Palestinian accused by Israel of having taken part in two 1969 bombings by the terrorist group the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), who was just convicted on a count of unlawful procurement of naturalization and is facing eighteen months in prison and deportation to Jordan. While Odeh’s case was only discussed at Loyola, at DePaul, the SJP chapter actually hosted a fundraiser for Odeh where all proceeds were to be donated to her legal defense team.

Of the more than 70 anti-Israel events on Illinois campuses since September 2013, SJP has sponsored the majority of those events, which were focused on BDS campaigns and castigating Israeli policy.

Other recent anti-Israel events on other campuses in Illinois include:

  • Shirien D, an Executive Board member of the American Association for Palestinian Equal Rights, spoke about alleged similarities between Ferguson and Gaza at the Illinois Institute of Technology on February 11, 2015.
  • A teach-in for students to learn about and get involved with the BDS movement took place at the University of Illinois-Urabana Champaign (UIUC) on Monday, November 10, 2014.
  • Ilan Pappe, an Israeli anti-Zionist professor who is famous for writing a book titled The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, spoke at the University of Chicago on Friday, October 24, 2014.

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May 23, 2014

Anti-Muslim Group Uses Hitler Imagery In Latest Anti-Muslim Ad

anti-muslim-ad-geller

AFDI’s “Islamic Jew-Hatred” ad in Washington D.C.

Pamela Geller and her anti-Muslim organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), has taken its hateful anti-Muslim message once again to the public in the form of paid advertisements on public transportation.

The latest controversy is just one of many inflammatory advertising campaigns sponsored by Geller and her organization in a bid to influence public discourse on the difficult issues of religion and the Middle East conflict.

Geller’s newest ad campaign, which began appearing on buses in the Washington D.C. Metro area, states, “Islamic Jew-hatred: It’s in the Quran.” The ad also includes a 1941 photo of the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin el-Husseini, having a conversation with Adolf Hitler.

Geller has a long history of promoting her bigoted anti-Muslim views through inflammatory messages in public spaces, stretching back at least to 2010. These ad campaigns are designed to expose Americans to what Geller and her organization consider the biggest threats posed by Islam.

Some notable examples include:

  • July 2012: Geller submitted an ad that ran on 75 Metro North train stations stating, “19,250 deadly Islamic attacks since 9/11/01 and counting. It’s not Islamophobia. It’s Islamorealism.”
  • September 2012: After a New York federal district court ruled that the New York City MTA violated Geller’s First Amendment right, AFDI’s “Savage” ad appeared in subway stations. The inflammatory ad read: “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.”
  • 2010 “Honor Killing Awareness Campaign”: A series of ads were placed on buses and taxi cab tops purportedly to address young Muslim women facing threats from their family for rejecting Muslim values or becoming “too Americanized.” The campaigns appeared under several names, including “Refuge From Islam” and “Leave Islam Safely.”

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has criticized Geller and AFDI for “consistently vilifying the Islamic faith under the guise of fighting radical Islam;” however, acknowledges that the ads are protected political speech under the First Amendment. ADL is also on the record stating that “Pro-Israel doesn’t mean anti-Muslim. And support for Israel is not built on anti-Muslim and anti-Arab stereotypes.”

Geller’s latest ad campaign is in response to an April 2014 anti-Israel ad by the virulently anti-Israel group American Muslims for Palestine (AMP). AMP also has a history of promoting extreme anti-Israel views through inflammatory ads on public transportation aimed at demonizing and delegitimizing Israel. In March 2013, on the eve of the Jewish holiday of Passover, AMP unveiled an ad on several New York City Metro North stations falsely accusing Israel of “apartheid.”

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