Campus Watch Research
Rabab Abdulhadi Promotes Alliances with Hamas-dominated Palestinian Universities
by Cinnamon Stillwell
[AT title: "State-Funded University Promoting Alliances with Hamas-dominated Palestinian Universities?"]
Bir Zeit University, located in the West Bank about a dozen miles north of Jerusalem, was already a seat of Islamist activity. The Hamas-supporters' win assures that an imprisoned terrorist will hold the title of "honorary chairman" of the student council.
According to Arab-Israeli journalist Khaled Abu Toameh:
Abdulhadi's efforts to forge ties with Bir Zeit and An-Najah -- which put off its April 26 student council election, possibly out of fear of a Hamas victory and ensuing partisan conflict -- date back at least to January, 2014. At the time, she organized and participated in a controversial, university-funded "Academic and Labor Delegation to Palestine," during which she met with individuals affiliated with U.S. State Department-designated terrorist organizations. The AMCHA Initiative, an organization that combats campus anti-Semitism, obtained an audio recording of a March, 2014 College of Ethnic Studies (which houses AMED) event to discuss the trip and, in a letter to SFSU President Leslie Wong, noted the following:
In the process, she insisted that:
To the contrary, Bir Zeit University is notorious for an atmosphere in which incitement to violence and expressions of hatred towards Israelis and Jews are ubiquitous, as is support for Hamas and, to a lesser extent, Fatah. The blogger Elder of Ziyon has documented a number of examples, including an "art exhibit" featuring mock Qassam rockets and tributes to "martyrs" (terrorists) and a pro-Hamas march with all the disturbing regalia associated with Gaza's Islamist rulers.
According to Matthew Levitt, director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy's Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, writing in 2007:
Of An-Najah University, Levitt had this to say:
Not only did Abdulhadi deny the well-documented nature of these universities, she engaged in rank hypocrisy. A founding member of the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, Abdulhadi signed a 2012 open letter to university presidents objecting to their participation in a delegation to Israel and urging officials not to "pursue institutional relationships between your universities and Israeli universities."
While there is no evidence at this time that SFSU finalized a memorandum of understanding with Bir Zeit, An-Najah is a different story. A November, 2014 Facebook post attributed to Abdulhadi and the College of Ethnic Studies -- which is either unavailable to the public or has been removed, but was excerpted in an "SF State Black Alumni Group" post -- noted that:
The 2014-2015 annual report for SFSU's All University Committee on International Programs is dated May, 2014 and thus, does not include this vote. However, a February, 2015 statement at An-Najah University's website proudly boasts that:
Given that its faculty was instrumental in forging these ties, why isn't SFSU eager to publicize its relationship with An-Najah or, in the event an understanding is reached, with Bir Zeit? Could the fact that both universities are hotbeds of radicalization, as demonstrated by, among other things, the prominence of both Hamas and Fatah in their respective student councils, have anything to do with its reticence?
If SFSU President Leslie Wong truly supported Abdulhadi's efforts, he would broadcast that one of his professors has succeeded in setting up a memorandum of understanding with a Hamas-dominated Palestinian university. We await his announcement with bated breath.
NB: If you wish to make your views known to San Francisco State University President Leslie Wong, he can be reached at:
Phone: (415) 338-1381
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