Hatem Bazian: Campus Watch goes after him

Historians in the News

Hatem Bazian is a senior lecturer in the department of Near Eastern studies, a member of the faculty advisory board in the religion, politics and globalization program, and an adjunct professor at Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, where he received his Ph.D. in Islamic studies.

Along with teaching courses in Islamic law, religious studies and Arabic, Bazian, a Palestinian native, also devotes an inordinate amount of time to pro-Palestinian activism. Unfortunately, the bulk of this activism is centered on organizations, publications, speeches, and events that demonize Israel and, at times, the United States.

As documented by Jonathan Calt Harris for Campus Watch:

In May 2002, Bazian was the sole speaker for a two-day event at San Francisco's George Washington High School so inflammatory as to generate formal letters of apology from the school administration to the public. Advertised as a Middle Eastern" cultural assembly," the event featured a rap song by a student comparing Zionists to Nazis as students ran back and forth with Palestinian flags. Student and faculty observers called the supposedly multicultural event"pure pro-Palestinian propaganda."

In October of 2002, at the University of Michigan, at the Palestinian Solidarity Movement's annual conference, Bazian shared a forum with revisionist historian Ilan Pappé and the now-jailed academic and terrorist fundraiser Sami Al-Arian of Florida Atlantic University. At Michigan and elsewhere Bazian consistently denies being an anti-Semite, calling the accusation a ploy of opponents."(The charge of) anti-Semitism is used as a means of neutralizing the opposition so the mainstream American public will distance itself from the ‘extremists.'"

Yet, Steven Emerson, in his book American Jihad, quotes Bazian sermonizing at the American Muslim Alliance conference in May 1999 in Santa Clara, California, promoting the Islamic State of Palestine. Excerpts from the quote read,"‘In the Hadith, the Day of Judgment will never happen until you fight the Jews ... and the stones will say, ‘Oh Muslim, there is a Jew hiding behind me. Come and kill him!'" There are a lot of passages in the Koran that do not advocate killing Jews. Why search out Hadith reports that do?

Post-Saddam, Bazian makes the rounds to Muslim Student Association events decrying the war and finding new ways to blame Israel for all American foreign policy. Speaking in Montreal in February 2004, at McGill University's MSA-sponsored lecture entitled"The New American Empire and its Adventures in the Middle East," Bazian named neoconservative think tanks, Israel-centric public officials, the Christian Right, and Oil, as the four forces behind American foreign policy....

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