Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Leftist Hate at Swarthmore

He likes Jews. Muzzle him.

Everyone knows that leftists on university campuses love to shut down speech they don't like. This often includes disrupting public talks from speakers invited by "conservative" groups or that hold "conservative" opinions on one thing or another.

At a venue at Swarthmore, yesterday, the invited speaker was Hussein Aboubakr. Why did the left wish to disrupt his talk? On the surface it would seem they should have liked the fellow:

  1. Hussein Aboubak is an Arab, born to Egyptian Muslim parents.
  2. Hussein was harassed, interrogated, detained and tortured by the security services of the authoritarian Mubarak regime.
  3. He participated in the "Arab Spring" demonstrations that deposed Mubarak.
  4. He is a self-described "revolutionary" and a Marxist. 
Oh, I forgot a few things:
  1. After studying the Hebrew language in Egypt, he became a friend of Israel.
  2. He is no longer a Muslim.
  3. He has had critical things to say about The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and Islam in general, especially when it comes to Muslim anti-Semitism.
Hence the left's hatred of him.

An open letter from Swarthmore Students for Israel and published in the Swarthmore Independent (first reported by the excellent blog Elder of Ziyon) describes the events of yesterday:
Today, the Swarthmore Students for Israel held an event with an invited speaker, Hussein Aboubakr. Hussein was a victim of torture (both physical and mental), repression, and hatred from his own government in Egypt. His only crime: studying Hebrew in his native country. We brought him in to speak because we believed his story was interesting and offered an important and original perspective on issues in the Middle East. 
Our intention was to open a dialogue. Yet some students who attended behaved contemptuously from the very beginning. They opened textbooks and pretended to read while Hussein spoke. They talked amongst themselves. They interrupted and scoffed at him when he told the most harrowing parts of his story. As he tearfully recalled painful experiences in a military prison of being assaulted and cursed at, our peers prepared to yell at him and say that he “can’t f***ing say that.” 
Understandably, Hussein reacted negatively to this rude treatment. The students who had come to interrupt now escalated. Soon our question-and-answer session degenerated into a screaming match. Instead of asking the speaker questions, these students yelled at us for bringing him to campus to spread “hatred” and claimed that his lecture “[didn’t] belong here.” One student stood up and proclaimed that he was shocked to hear such opinions at Swarthmore. We thought people attended college to hear new opinions. We expected to people to disagree with him politically. What shocked us was that a survivor of sustained torture could be treated in such a way on our campus. 
We should all be able to agree, at a minimum, that guests to our campus, especially those who have suffered extreme physical and mental abuse, should be treated with respect and dignity, regardless of whether we disagree with what they have to say. Alternative opinions should be listened to, not shut down. Unfortunately, those whomost fervently advocate diversity seem to be the ones least tolerant of it when it is presented to them, especially in a civilized forum. 
We had hoped to open up a dialogue here at Swarthmore, and the inability displayed here to do so only shows how necessary this is. We are cautiously optimistic that there may still be a space for a conversation on Israel and its neighbors here on our campus...
For more on Hussein, you may visit his blogs at The Times of Israel or his own I Survived Tahir Square. 

The anti-Semitism (sorry, anti-Zionism) and pro-Muslim sympathies of the current left are by now standard news. Leftist "anti-fascists" march arm in arm with Muslim fascists and no one bats an eye.

But why it should be so? Until a generation or two ago, the left, in this country at least, was if anything more supportive of Jewish interests and the state of Israel than anyone else. And Islam with its medieval "right-wing" views--everyone is subject to irrational and arbitrary religious rules, women must cover themselves, apostates can be jailed, gays should be stoned to death or thrown off rooftops or buried alive under walls, etc.--would have been almost the epitome of what the left claimed to oppose.

So, what happened?

Don't ask me. Ask them.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. It's the collectivist mindset, the hive hive, the "Intolerance Will Not Be Tolerated" nanny statists run amok at the state university of the Left Coast's land of fruits & nuts. The modern American Liberal Fascist aka "Progressive" -- really a retread regressive from the Woodrow Wilson Democan'ts "Forward" to Obumbler the Unready & Hitlery -- has much more in common with the National Socialist (Nazi), Communist (Soviet), Islamist, & Aryan (or pick a race/color/creed) Supremacist than any Constitutionalist, RepubliCan, Patriot or Individualist.