10 thoughts on “Bard College Reaffirms Relationship with Al Quds University – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Brandeis Faculty Members’ Visit to Al Quds University

    On the Brandeis/Al-Quds University Partnership by Dan Terris

    I have recently returned from a five-day trip to Al-Quds University, continuing work on a decade-long partnership between Brandeis University and this prominent Palestinian educational institution. I was accompanied by my Brandeis colleagues Sue Lanser (English, and Women’s and Gender Studies) and Dan Kryder (Politics).

    Our trip, scheduled months ago, was focused on projects for the next phase of the successful partnership with which we three and many others have been involved. Projects in progress at the time of our departure included faculty research exchanges, a women’s leadership institute, and curriculum development in the politics and English departments.

    This is a good time to recall Nusseibeh’s forty-year record of courage, innovation, and willingness to engage in challenging dialogue, the marks of a man whom I know personally to be a stalwart opponent of hatred and intolerance wherever they are found. Brandeis need not agree with everything that Sari Nusseibeh says to value him as an important member of the Center’s extended community.

    Over the past decade, hundreds of Brandeis University students, faculty, and staff members have participated in a variety of activities with Al-Quds University counterparts with the goal of enhancing mutual understanding through work together on shared scholarly and educational interests. At the time of this post, Brandeis has taken down the Brandeis/Al-Quds Partnership website, so the detailed record of our many years of work together is not available. [Note: as of November 22 Brandeis has restored the web site]. A short video and a brochure describing some aspects of the partnership are available, and I encourage you to take a look to get a flavor of what we have done together.

  2. A must read, the extended reply by Sari Nusseibeh:

    Al-Quds president says Brandeis counterpart ‘gone overboard’ in row over rally

    (TOI) – Nusseibeh was responding to a follow-up query in which The Times of Israel asked him whether he had condemned the rally — and any lauding of suicide bombers that may have taken place there — in Arabic to the students of al-Quds. Nusseibeh replied with a lengthy critique of Lawrence’s role in the affair and a defense of his own actions in the wake of the rally.

    “I think president Lawrence has gone overboard in his reactions — the last being his decision to expel me from the Board of Ethics, justice and public life, with which I have been associated since its inception, and from many years before I forged a partnership between the two universities,” Nusseibeh charged.

    … only yesterday, I learnt (still informally) from one of the people on the investigation committee what the occasion was: the jihad faction was protesting the manner of killing by the Israeli army a few days ago of [a palestinian youth involved with] the suicide bomber from three years ago: they had invited the parents of the person bombed inside the cave where he was hiding by way of ‘paying respects’ to them.”

    Nusseibeh may have been referring to the late-October killing by the IDF of Islamic Jihad’s Muhammed Aazi, who was allegedly among the planners of a bus bombing in Tel Aviv last November in which 29 people were injured. Aazi, who was said by the IDF to be planning another attack, was shot in a clash in the cave where he was hiding out west of Ramallah.

    The suspect was killed by special forces shooting a Stinger shoulder-fired missile into the cave.

    “It appears that the fact that students displayed pictures of shaheeds who’d martyred themselves in acts of terror against Israel…”
    I don’t know anything about this particular rally and the pictures but “shaheed” (plur: shuhadaa’) does not necessarrily have anything to do with people who ‘martyred themselves’. Its original meaning is ‘witness’ and it originally meant someone who died while defending his faith or land. In a Palestinian context, a kid killed during a bombing or an old man killed in his bed while sleeping is a ‘shaheed’ too.
    I know the Islamophobes/Hasbaristas have managed to impose their own translation of this word: when Mohamed Assaf won Arab Idol, he dedicated his victory to the Palestinian people, the political prisoners and the shaheeds (shuhadaa’) in a very beautiful speech, and in an article on Daily Beast written by some Itay Hod it was described as “contentious”: “Moments after his triumph, Assaf dedicated his win to the “shahids”, a term which mean martyr and is used to describe suicide bombers who were killed while struggling”.
    Isn’t that fantastic: of Assaf’s whole speech this Itay-guy only paid attention to the “shahids” and he managed to turn Assaf’s speech into a hate speech by manipulating this one word.

      1. It’s okay, Richard, it’s such a common mistake even among the best :-))

        Recently Ahlam Shibli, a young Palestinian photographer from the Galilee had an exposition in one of the major museums in Paris and the local AIPAC was out because she has “shahids” in the exposition: they asked the Ministry of Culture to close down the exposition because it was a ‘hymn to suicide-bombers’, but the object of the expostion was the absence of a close family member, and the shahids were mostly young men being killed by the Israelis during the incursion in Nablus 2002.
        In Algeria, scatted around the countryside are hundreds of cemeteries of shuhadaa’ (shahids)/martyrs: those were people who died while fighting the French colonialists. Franz Fanon the great anti-colonialist intellectual from the Martinique is buried in one of them, though he died of a cancer in the US.
        So the word had a variety of meanings. But I’ve noticed that even when you explain the meaning, the hasbara continues with the ‘suicide-bombers’ just as Bar_Kochba insists on the “Nazi-style”….

  4. [portions of this commment which were off-topic and in violation of comment rules have been deleted]

    …You quoted:
    The protesters held up their right hands in a Nazi-style salute, but observers have pointed out that such a salute does not necessarily connote Nazi allegiance…

    In an open letter posted to the American Studies Facebook page, [Al Quds Prof.] Daoudi said that when he sees students demonstrating, he sees “disappointment, frustration, despair, anger, all combined together in a militaristic march protesting the dire present Palestinian political and economic conditions.”

    He added that “I did not see anything Nazi about that salute.”

    Saying “it is not necessarily connote a Nazi salute” does NOT mean that it is NOT an Nazi salute. It leaves open the possibility that it IS a Nazi salute”…

    Recalling that you said it is in realiity NOT a Nazi salute, I can therefore conclude that should a group of people in Seattle go marching around making such a salute, you wouldn’t mind…

    Finally, could be please enlighten us as to whom this Daoudi fellow is and why you assume he, of all people, is the final authority on whether it is indeed a Nazi salute. As a suggestion, why don’t you show a picture of Palestinians, HIZBULLAH and other Arab groups using this salute to various groups in the US and Europe and see what what impression it makes on them. See if it makes them more or less supportive of their varous causes…

    1. @ Bar Kochba:

      Saying “it is not necessarily connote a Nazi salute” does NOT mean that it is NOT an Nazi salute.

      In fact, it was NOT a Nazi salute. Here is Pres. Nusseibeh quoting a member of his faculty investigating committee:

      I should just add here that I was informed by the investigation committee member I mentioned above that no nazi or fascist sentiments were expressed.

      Further, Islamic Jihad itself released a public statement which I quoted in an earlier post completely rejecting there was any connection to Nazism in the salute. And readers with far more knowledge about Palestinian resistance movements than you (or even I) have pointed out that many political movements around the world which are not fascist or Nazi have used & continue to use such salutes.

      from an Arab point of view, what would be bad about it being a Nazi salute.

      Don’t you just love it when Israeli Jewish settlers tell you what the “Arab point of view” is?? How would they know? What gets me about Bar Kochba is that I continually point out the idiocy and blatant contradictions of his claims, and it never seems to have any impact. He makes the same bloopers that reflect so poorly on his ideology time after time. There’s no learning curve at all.

      As for who Daoudi is, if you’d bothered to read the article to which I linked you’d know who he is. But you didn’t because you’re lazy.

      I have repeatedly told commenters like you in the past that Husseini is absolutely off topic (just as claims that Israel is a Nazi state or that its leaders are or were Nazis, are off topic). I’ve also repeatedly told you that YOU were on the verge of being banned. If you violate the comment rules in any way in future I will ban you.

      Snark too, especially atttempting to be witty or sarcastic is a comment rule violation.

      I have deleted the portion of your comment that was off-topic and violation of the comment rules.

    1. Posted in Mondoweiss by Pamela Olson: November 27, 2013 at 12:31 pm

      Off topic a bit, but did anyone else see this hatchet job on the entire Palestinian people in The Boston Globe:

      It’s Jeff Jacoby’s reaction to the Al Quds University “controversy” that basically says Palestinian values are the same as Nazis. I wrote a letter to the editor:

      Dear Editor,

      I’m an American woman who lived in Palestine for two years during and after the second Intifada, working as a journalist based in Ramallah. Reading Jeff Jacoby’s op-ed, I was shocked at the racism and essentializing that got past The Boston Globe’s editors in the years 2013. The ease with which anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian bigotry slides off today’s op-ed pages is a sad parallel to the “acceptable in polite company” anti-Semitism of old. It should be condemned just as soundly.

      I can’t, in 200 words, offer systematic proof that Palestinians aren’t, as a collective, fascist, hate-filled, genocidal maniacs who can never make peace simply because of who they are, and thus don’t deserve fundamental human rights (such as freedom, fair trials, self-determination, etc.) like the rest of the world. (None of these rights is granted to Palestinians under Israeli occupation.)

      But when such grandiose and damaging accusations are thrown around, I would encourage people of conscience and reason to dig a little deeper before accepting (and publishing!) what amounts to a blanket condemnation of an entire civilian population — a characterization I find deeply unfair and inaccurate, given my long experience living among Palestinians, and also profoundly damaging to prospects for genuine peace in the region.


      Pamela Olson, author of Fast Times in Palestine

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