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Daniel Pipes at UC Berkeley

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Berkeley’s Daily Californian has a shamefully biased and whitewashed account of Daniel Pipes’ speech earlier this week at UC Berkeley: Staunch Israel Backer Attacks ‘Militant’ Islam. (Hat tip: Brenda Walker.)

But to see how bad it really was in that zoo, let’s turn to this report from ChronWatch’s Cinnamon Stillwell: Fascism at UC Berkeley: Muslim Student Association Disrupts Daniel Pipes Lecture. (Hat tip: Ethel Carol.)

It began as soon as Pipes stepped up to the podium.  In fact, before he’d spoken one word, someone had to be escorted outside because he wouldn’t calm down.  Then jeering, giggling, hissing, booing, and finally, the orchestrated chanting of ”racist” and ”Zionist,” (among other things) starting drowning out the lecture.  However, the rest of the audience gave as good as it got and the event turned out to be more of a shouting and clapping match between Muslims and Jews than anything else.

The tension in the air was thick, tempers were rising, and yet amidst it all, Pipes kept his cool.  He managed to deliver his lecture, which covered the War on Terrorism, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and Iraq, but he was forced to stop many times.  Pipes spoke directly to the protesters on several occasions, pointing out the irony of their undemocratic behavior, as well as mentioning casually that it is only when he speaks at college campuses that he requires such heavy security.  He even brought up the fact that members of the MSA are currently under investigation for possible ties to terrorism.

Their reaction to his speech was telling.

When Pipes brought up the need to support moderate Muslims over those who subscribe to militant Islam, they booed.

When he brought up the need to improve the status of women in Islamic countries, they booed.

When he warned that peace in the Middle East would never be achieved as long as the Palestinians continued to subscribe to a ”cult of death,” they booed.

When he mentioned Middle East Studies professors who have been arrested under terrorism charges, they booed.

When he discussed the need to combat Islamic terrorism, they booed.

When he referred to the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks as subscribers to militant Islam, they booed and shouted ”Zionism”—no doubt a reference to the myth that Jews were behind the attacks.

When Pipes brought up campuswatch.org, the website he founded to provide a voice for students feeling oppressed by their leftist professors, they shouted out ”McCarthyism” and of course ”racist” yet again.

And when he mentioned Iraqis’ ”liberation” from Saddam Hussein’s tyranny, they booed even louder.

”I’m sure the Iraqis were much better off under Saddam Hussein,” Pipes responded sarcastically.

When it came time for the question and answer period, the group of MSA students all got up together and left, chanting ”racist” and ”Zionist” over and over again.  However, a few stragglers were left in the audience and they eventually had to be escorted outside by the police because of their unruly behavior.  One of them was the man who had been babbling outside about Gandhi.  But this time he got down to basics, calling Pipes ”a racist Jew.”  Sadly, it took several more of these epithets before he was forcibly removed.

After the lecture, many Jews in the audience were visibly shaken.  For those who hadn’t yet encountered Muslim hostility up close and personal, it was an eye-opening experience.  Perhaps not all of UC Berkeley’s Muslim students subscribe to the anti-Semitic views of the MSA, but if that’s the case, they certainly didn’t make their voices heard that evening.

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