16 May 2003

Divestment, What a Brilliant Idea!

Is this microphone on? (tap, tap, tap) Obviously not. Student Council passed a resolution last week to push the University to divest from companies doing business in Israel. What a brilliant plan! Like the university hasn’t lost enough money so far. Did someone say “budget cuts” and “program cutting”? I guess Student Council didn’t hear anything like that. And we know that the United States economy is doing so well that we can afford to ask universities and private business to stop doing business in Israel. Why didn’t we think of this before? Because this is a stupid idea, that’s why.

The reason that Student Council passed this divestment resolution was because they felt that the situation in Israel is one of apartheid. Guess who didn’t do their homework? What a funny accusation to make against the only democracy in the Middle East. I didn’t hear a peep of complaint from Student Council about Wayne State’s agreement with Syria.

Syria, as we know, is one of the biggest cocaine distributors in the world as well as number one in the Middle East. Go Syria (hard work pays off)! Let’s forget about those 40,000 men, women and children of the city of Hama that were wiped off the face of the Earth by past president Hafez el-Assad (his son now runs the country) because they disagreed with his politics. Too bad for them, huh. Oh, and let us not forget that Syria is called home by many different terrorist organizations such as Hamas, which perpetrates the murder of hundreds of Israeli civilians, and the al-Qaeda connected Hizbullah. Over the last 30 years, Hizbullah has been busy. Their resume includes the bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut murdering 215 American soldiers, as well as the Kohbar towers bombing which murdered another19. Was that a sound of complaint from Student Council? Nope, I was mistaken, someone stepped on the cat’s tail.

Why harp on Syria when we can talk about the entire Middle East? In 1948 when they weren’t able to destroy the reborn Jewish state, they decided instead to kick out the Jews that had been living in the Arab countries minding their own business. Some of those Jews had been living there 2500 years, but never mind. 900,000 Jews were thrown out and billions of dollars of private property was stolen from them. Where did they go? Did they stay in refugee camps paid for by the world and ignored by their brothers in Israel? Did they ask for a right of return to their Arab homelands? No, they did not. These Jews were integrated straight into Israeli society which was less than 10 years old. I wonder how you integrate almost a million people into a society with a less than stable economy in under ten years, but you can do anything if you care about your brothers.

Enough, let’s get back to Israel, and what a terrible place it isn’t. Israel is a democracy. Surprised? Most would have you believe that Arabs are not allowed to vote or participate in the election process. There are several Arab parties included in the Israeli Parliament. I wonder how that happened in an “apartheid” state such as Israel? Actually, there was some controversy in the last Israeli election when two Arab ministers were banned temporarily from running for office. What a terrible thing, how could that happen?

Well it seems that those two ministers, Ahmed Tibi and Azmi Bishara were running around calling for the destruction of the State of Israel. They were what? Ahmed Tibi is both a minister on the Israeli Parliament but also is an advisor to Yasser Arafat who hasn’t lifted a finger to stop Arab attack on Jews. Tibi is also quite vocal in his praise of violence against Jewish Israelis.

Minister Bishara has been even busier than Tibi. He travelled to Syria, went on Syrian television with Bashar Assad (the current president), the head of Hizbullah and praised Hizbullah for all their good work in killing Jews. Wow! I want these guys in my government. And if you were concerned if they were allowed to run for office in the last election don’t worry your pretty little head about it. Of course they were. You are allowed to call for the murder of your fellow citizens and run for a ministerial position. Did someone say something about Arabs not having equal rights in Israel?

The last Student Council obviously needed to have its collective head examined. By condemning Israel and not Syria, they showed themselves ignorant of reality. This new Student Council should take a strong stand behind Israel and repeal the divestment resolution.

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