By Bruce Bawer
Ah, college. The memories! Sitting under a shady tree on the quad reading Twelfth Night. Studying in your dorm room for the big test while “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” plays on a stereo down the hall. Going to a Muslim Student Union event at which the guest lecturer urges you and your fellow students “not to be wimps but to be Mojahedeen” who “terrorize the Kaffars” and “look to die in the path of Allah.”
A couple of days ago, Arnold Ahlert wrote here about “Islam Awareness Week 2013,” coming up next week at the University of California, Irvine, thanks to that institution’s Muslim Student Union. Now, while Irvine, a frequent site of high-profile pro-jihadist and anti-Semitic activity, has almost certainly earned the coveted title of America’s MSU Mecca, its MSU is, in fact, as Ahlert quite properly points out, only one of 600 or so North American chapters of the Muslim Student Association, most of which are no pikers either, holding similar events year in and year out, if on a less headline-grabbing scale. Almost universally, these hundreds of MSUs are viewed by university administrators and other observers as harmless, wholesome, benign – no different from any other student group. Indeed, the fact that so many young Muslims in the West, some of them the children or grandchildren of illiterate peasants, are enrolled at universities is routinely held up by starry-eyed left-wing naifs as proof positive of the triumph of Islamic integration.
Yet the evidence, of course, is overwhelming that the MSUs represent the very opposite of real integration – which requires, first and foremost, the total and unapologetic adoption of secular, democratic Western values, even this means openly rejecting sharia, jihad, and sundry Islamic fundamentals. The MSA, as Ahlert makes clear, is a “terror factory” and a Muslim Brotherhood spinoff-cum-subsidiary, and next week’s Irvine event, purportedly dedicated to dialogue and mutual understanding and featuring speeches supposedly about such innocuous topics as “freedom of speech” and “women’s rights in Islam” will, like countless other such campus gatherings, be a veritable parade of poisonous Kaffar haters, jihad enthusiasts, and would-be crushers of Israel. (As it happens, the University of California at Santa Barbara, not to be outdone by its sister campus in Orange County, will be hosting the annual MSA West conference in February, with speakers like Siraj Wahhaj, an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing who calls white people “devils.”)
The unfortunate truth is that all too many Muslim college students in the West are essentially majoring in Mujahideen Studies – poring over the Koran instead of the Constitution, their dorms, in effect, serving as terrorist cells. Nor, of course, is this just happening in the U.S. and Canada. The jihad-happy student group Islam Net, based at Oslo University College, is probably Norway’s largest Islamic organization, and is unarguably its fastest-growing. In fact, the more closely you look into all of these groups, the harder it is to deny that Muslim collegians, far from being rendered immune by Western higher education to a primitive, bloodthirsty ideology that should, in a more logical world, only appeal to unlettered barbarians, are all too often, if anything, more susceptible to it than their unschooled cousins back in camel country.
That this spreading crisis of campus jihadism is no less acute in the U.K. than in the New World is the urgent message of Challenging Extremists: Practical Frameworks for Our Universities, a new report compiled by Rupert Sutton and Hannah Stuart for the Henry Jackson Society, a think tank, and Student Rights, a group dedicated to exposing extremism at British universities. In large part, Sutton’s and Stuart’s report amounts to a rogues’ gallery of speakers (most of whose names are routinely prefaced by the honorific “Dr.”) who are in demand among the budding red-brick jihadist jet set. Among them: Azzam Tamimi, who has boasted of his closeness to Hamas leaders; Zahir Mahmoud, who insists that Hamas is not a terrorist group; Murtaza Khan, who labels Jews and Christian “filthy”; and Daud Abdullah, who signed a 2009 statement saying that “the Islamic nation” is obliged to regard the Royal Navy’s monitoring of the smuggling of weapons into Gaza as “a declaration of war.”
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