ADL Calls On UC Irvine to Denounce Anti-Semitic Speaker and Pull Charter of Muslim Student Union

Orange County, California, May 14, 2010 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) strongly condemns the anti-Semitic and hateful speech that took place yesterday at the University of California, Irvine, as part of an "Israeli Apartheid Week" program organized by the Muslim Student Union. ADL further calls on Chancellor Michael Drake and university officials to condemn the anti-Semitic rhetoric, hate speech and support for terrorism that has come to define the Muslim Student Union's annual anti-Israel week events and calls on the University to revoke their charter as a student organization.

In a speech that bordered on incitement titled "Death to Apartheid," Imam Amir Abdul Malik Ali, an Oakland-based imam, called Jews "the new Nazis," affirmed that he supports Hamas, Hezbollah and jihad and called for an end to the "apartheid state of Israel." His abhorrent comments came after he noted that it is a time of "celebration" for critics of Israel because people are "no longer afraid of being called anti-Semitic."

"How long must we hear Malik Ali support terrorism, express hatred of Jews and call for the destruction of the State of Israel before the University is willing to denounce him and those who invite him and sponsor his speech at Irvine?," Kevin O'Grady, ADL Orange County Regional Director said. "While Chancellor Drake has made it clear he abhors anti-Semitism, a strong public statement condemning this bigot and the Muslim Student Union that annually sponsors his vile speech would go a long way towards living up to the campus values of respect, integrity, truth, trust and empathy. The MSU has consistently violated the campus code of conduct. Enough is enough!"

We were pleased to see 56 faculty members issue an open letter expressing concern about activities on campus that foment hatred against Jews and Israelis, and hope that they, too, will specifically condemn Malik Ali's tirade. Ali may have the First Amendment right to spew his hate, but the University community has the obligation to denounce it in the most forceful terms. It would send a strong message to Jewish students on campus that the University is committed to providing an environment that is free of intimidation and harassment."

Malik Ali, who runs Masjid Al Islam, a mosque affiliated with the anti-Semitic Muslim group Sabiqun, is regularly invited to UC - Irvine and other Southern California campuses as part of their anti-Israel programming. His speeches consistently include outrageous rants about Zionists and Jews, including blaming Israel for the September 11 terrorist attacks, and describing the U.S. government, the economy and the media as being part of a corrupt global super-structure controlled by "Zionist Jews."

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.