Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Ben White at UC Irvine (Cont)

Monday evening, British journalist Ben White made his second speaking appearance at UC Irvine on behalf of the Muslim Student Union. His theme this time was to dispute the idea of Israel as a democracy. In his talk, he brought up issues like the statements of leaders like Ariel Sharon, Shimon Peres and others to the effect that Israel had to maintain its identity as a Jewish state. He talked about the housing status of Palestinians living in the Negev. He talked about the Palestinians who wound up in refugee camps as a result of the 1948 war. Basically, White talked about how the Israelis were constantly trying to deny Palestinians living within Israel proper their rights. It was a one-sided presentation of a complicated conflict.

Naturally, as in the afternoon session, White neglected to mention the terrorist threat the  Israelis faced from the Palestinians. Naturally, he neglected to mention the plight of Jewish refugees, some 600-800,000 of whom were driven out of Arab lands as a result of the 1948 conflict. Not a mention of that.

In his closing he pushed the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS)  movement as something the audience could be involved in. White is a strong suopoprter of BDS.

In the question and answer session, I pointed out this point, as well as the plight of religious minorities in the countries surrounding Israel. I also asked him to talk to the audience about the Jews driven out of Arab lands. In his response, he made the point that it was irrelevant to the subject of Israel’s transgressions, but did state that everyone on both sides who lost their homes and possessions should be given compensation.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the updates.

Anonymous said...

Every single year during Palestine Week at UCI you just seem to be upset over the reality of the situation and in your Q and A try to divert attention from the atrocities committed by the Israeli Govt by bringing up irrelevant issues and harp on the speakers for issues that they DON'T bring up, which you only do because you're frustrated over the issues that they DO bring up. Sad. It's extremely hypocritical of you to accuse speakers of only giving "one side of the story" when you yourself during your "Q and A's" (which you really just use as a platform to jump on a soap box and attempt to cover up Israel's heinous actions through either character assassination of the speaker, or asking questions that are completely irrelevant to the topic) have never once acknowledged the suffering and brutality that Palestinian civilians face on a regular basis at the hands of the IDF and Israeli Govt policies. Practice what you preach.

I see that you screen your comments so I'll be surprised if you're man enough to handle this criticism and approve my post.

PS: I also think it's hilarious how you pitch yourself as a lecturer at UC Irvine to establish credibility before you ask your teach ESL part time at a university. How do you take your career and your life seriously?

Findalis said...

He also forgot to mention that those thousands of Jews forced from Arab lands spent years in tent cities, all the while they were working to build the towns and cities that they founded.

If the Muslims did the same with their so-called Palestinian brothers, there would be no problem today.

Gary Fouse said...

Dear Anonymous,

First of all, I am man enough to post your comment. Done. Second, I am merely exercising my right to emter into the arena and put my view out there since these events are always one-sided. The speakers never mention the acts of terror that Israelis are subjected to or the anti-Semitism that some of the UCI speakers have engaged in.

Unlike the much-vaunted Irvine 11, I respect the right of free speech even if it is hateful (Malik Ali). I do not disrupt, but abide by the protocol and engage the speaker in the Q and A. That is my right and I will continue to do so even if everyone else in the room disagrees with me. (Isn't that what a university is sipposed to be?)

I usually introduce myself at the mic because I don't hide behind anonymity, just as I sign everything I write (unlike you). Malik knows who I am because I have engaged him for about 5 years now. I also like to let people know that there is at least one teacher on campus who doesn't march in lockstep with the PC line.

As for establishing my credibility, this part-time gig at UCI is just a post retirement job after 25 years as a DEA agent who has lived and worked from Asia to Europe. I have also served in the US military. Unlike many professors, I do have some real life experience to bring into the clasrrom. BTW- I never discuss my personal views in the classroom.

I don't claim to be an expert on the Middle East conflict and I have always maintained that the Palestininas probably have legitimate grievances-which could be worked out if they would foreswear terror. I simply believe that Israel has a right to exist and defend herself. Personaly, my suspicion is that they are oppressed more by their own leaders than by Israel.

I hope this answers your concerns. I suggest you do yourself a favor and remain anonymous. Smart move on your part.

Miggie said...

I'm always skeptical of all the MSU students who are so obsessed with the singular nature of the "heinous" crimes of the Israelis. I doubt if even a small fraction of them have ever actually been in Israel and were able to compare and contrast the lives of the Israeli Arabs/Muslims with those in the surrounding Islamic countries.

I written this here before because it has been told to me so often by Israeli Arabs. There is nothing worse you can do to them than to take away their Israeli citizenship and send them to live in an Arab country. Think about that...they prefer the Israeli "oppression" over all the benefits in ANY Islamic country! American Muslims kids have been brainwashed.

Also, if you speak Arabic, you probably were not able to understand the few sentences Malik Ali spoke, supposedly in Arabic. That is because he doesn't read or write Arabic! What he reads are transliterated Arabic words that are written in English. Some authentic Muslim!

What he can do though is to come up with kakamamie theories about how the MAN (i.e. Zionist Jews) are victimizing the Palestinians and controlling the world. To all the losers looking for someone to blame for why they don't succeed, he will give you the reason.