By Oleg Atbashian | First published in GotNews.com on 11/17/2016
[ PROG OFF ]
As you may have heard, on November 4th I was arrested, handcuffed, and taken to jail for posting anti-terror stickers on George Mason University campus. I was charged with “class 6 felony for destruction of property,” threatened with five years in prison, and released 14 hours later on $8,000 bail posted by my wife. The court date is now set for February 14th, 2017.
You can read the full description of how it happened in a number of news stories below. Now I’d like to explain why I did it.
George Mason University (GMU) ranks number three in the top 10 most anti-Semitic campuses, with very active, rabidly anti-Israel student groups, who thrive in the school’s politically correct climate. The administrators’ endorsement of pro-terror activism may be explained not only by their “progressive” ideology, but also by large donations from Islamist groups tied to terror finance – two factors that have been increasingly converting American universities into Marxist madrassas. For more background, see a well-researched article about this case by Kyle Shideler.
On the weekend of November 4th, GMU was hosting a two-day national conference held by the Hamas-affiliated hate group, Students for Justice for Palestine (SJP). In this regard, prominent author David Horowitz had addressed the GMU president with an open letter, recommending to conduct an immediate inquiry into the group’s activities and remove their campus privileges and funding, in order to stop harassment and intimidation of Jewish students at George Mason. That letter remained unanswered.
While I’m not Jewish myself, it is self-evident that Jews have been the “canaries in a coal mine,” always targeted first before the rest of us are killed and maimed by totalitarian forces, be it Nazism in the 20th century or Islamofascism in the 21st. Israel is as much a part of Western civilization as Europe and America are. When Jews are targeted, the rest of us eventually fall into the crosshairs as well, as has been proven by multiple terrorist attacks in Europe and America in recent years. Stopping Islamic terrorism, therefore, is not just a matter of someone’s decency or solidarity with the Jews. We’re past the point when that was anyone’s moral choice; it’s now a matter of everyone’s self-preservation.
It’s as simple as that.
As school administrations across America remain comfortably numb to this fact for whatever financial or ideological reasons, all efforts to engage them in a civil discourse have proven futile. George Mason University, in particular, has distinguished itself with examples of enforced unanimity, suppression of free speech, and outright ideological intolerance among its students and faculty.
Therefore, David Horowitz and I have teamed up in a campaign that would make GMU leaders uncomfortable enough to pay attention, look outside their ivory towers, and take in the reality. And it worked.
I have designed posters that expose the genocidal nature of anti-Israel activism and the deadly consequences of supporting pro-terror groups. On the eve of the SJP gathering at George Mason, I posted stickers with these designs in various conspicuous spots on campus. They were noticed. The GMU authorities became annoyed enough to mobilize their police force to look for the perpetrators.