A Catholic priest gave pronouncements “in the name of Allah.”[i] Signs were sold proclaiming “Support Armed Resistence [sic] in Iraq and Everywhere,” next to tomes of Marx, Trotsky and Che Guevara. A smiling student marched carried a sign saying “Long Live Fallujah,” and another held a Bush effigy aloft on a noose. Such was the scene at the latest anti-war rally that occurred April 10 in San Francisco, where Hatem Bazian, a senior lecturer in Islamic studies at Berkeley called for an “intifada” in America.
As reported by LittleGreenFootballs.com, (and viewable here) Bazian declared to the cheering crowd, “we’re sitting here and watching the world pass by, people being bombed, and it’s about time that we have an intifada in this country that change[s] fundamentally the political dynamics in here.” The Berkeley-trained Ph.D. concluded his call to violence with a promise of more to come: “They’re gonna say, ‘some Palestinian being too radical’ — well, you haven’t seen radicalism yet!”[ii]
This call to violence in the U.S. may seem extreme, but it is certainly not the first time for radicalism from Bazian; it has long been a hallmark of his career. A native Palestinian, Bazian has made a name for himself being an outspoken anti-Zionist.
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 multi-cultural event “pure pro-Palestinian propaganda.”[iii]
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!’”[iv] There are a lot of passages in the Koran that don’t 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. In February 2004, speaking in Montreal, at McGill University’s MSA-sponsored lecture entitled, “The New American Empire and its Adventures in the Middle East,” naming neoconservative think tanks, Israel-centric public officials, the Christian Right, and Oil, as the four forces behind American foreign policy.
Bazian reserved particular invective for Israel. Listing off virtually every key member of Bush’s inner circle, including Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, former CIA chief James Woolsey and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Bazian called them “Israeli-centric,” a term he apparently finds damning in itself. Bazian declared, “The New York conservatives wanted to make the Middle East a safe neighborhood, but not for Arabs; they wanted to make it a safe neighborhood for Israel.”[v]
Bazian’s rhetoric at the April 10th anti-war rally is therefore highly typical of his career. Why are California taxpayers paying for this extremist’s salary? Why is the University of California implicitly endorsing his venom by continuing to employ him?
Jonathan Calt Harris is managing editor of Campus Watch.
[iv] Emmerson, Steven. American Jihad the terrorists living among us, New York: The Free Press, 2002, P. 214.