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Thread: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

  1. #1
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/201...-columbia.html

    http://www.columbiaspectator.com/201...timidation-101

    By Daniel Hertz Published April 18, 2010

    As an engineering student at Columbia, the issue of bias in the classroom has been, for the most part, nonexistent—unfortunately, this is, in my experience, not the case for a significant number of classes in the department of Middle East, South Asian, and African Studies (MESAAS, formerly MEALAC). Despite the constant reminders of professors’ one-sided agendas, I have always tried to take as many of these classes as possible. This semester, my curiosity for the subject led me to check out the class titled “Palestinian and Israeli Politics and Society,” taught by the renowned Joseph Massad. Although I entered the class with a hopeful outlook, it only took a handful of lectures for Massad to prove so many of his detractors right—he not only made his biases obvious but also embarrassed me in the process.

    After attending a few lectures, I was still unsure as to whether I wanted to register and remain in the class. While Massad’s reputation had preceded him for the most part, his statements were often tainted with a hue of partiality, making me, and several other students, extremely uncomfortable. With a skillfully crafted curriculum and required reading list filled to the brim with anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic sentiment, Massad had no intention of teaching history—he planned on rewriting it.

    The course began with an extremely “brief” introduction to the history of the land. Starting in the 16th century and briskly moving into in the 19th and 20th centuries, Massad had completely avoided the historical context that would nullify his own agenda. During these first few lectures, there was absolutely no mention of the 3,000-year-old Jewish presence in Israel, which is backed by an exhaustive amount of both written and archeological proof. In his subsequent description of the founding of Tel Aviv, Israel’s major economic hub and richest city, Massad once again turned history upside down. Through the use of disturbing anecdotes and baseless accusations, Massad claimed that Tel Aviv was built through a process of Arab labor and expulsions by Jews, disregarding the plethora of proof that discredits these allegations, including dozens of photographs before the city’s founding and endless official British documentation describing the city as built and inhabited by only Jews.

    Several weeks into the semester, Spectator interviewed me about Campus Media Watch, a Middle East watchdog group I founded at Columbia. After reading the article, I noticed I was incorrectly described as the sole contributor to one of the group’s innocuous blog posts regarding Massad. The following day, I attended class for what I thought would be a regular lesson. After a few minutes of friendly banter with Massad, I sat down as he brought order to the class. With the full attention of his students, Massad singled me out and asked several questions about my attendance. Although I tried to clarify that I was still unsure about registration, my explanation was useless—Massad told me to leave his class immediately, explaining that I was in violation of school policy. Confused and embarrassed for being singled out in front of nearly 60 of my peers, I left the class with an uneasy feeling. Over the next few days, many of my former classmates approached me and described Massad’s disturbing reaction to the incident. Although I was not present at the time, I was told that Massad had gone on a “paranoid rant,” denouncing me as a “Jewish spy” for the same organization that “had tried to get him in trouble before.”

    After reviewing school policy, it turns out that Massad had the right to ask me to leave the classroom for not being registered. He did not, however, have the right to deliberately humiliate me in front of my peers. Massad’s claim that I was spying on his class is just as bizarre as it is baseless. During the times I attended his lectures, I sat in the front row, making my presence even more obvious with the handful of questions I asked each class. By not confronting me about registration during the time we talked before class began, Massad had the clear intention of making an example of me. I had entered the class with an optimistic mind-set—I had left it embarrassed and shocked by the unprofessional behavior of an instructor at Columbia University. Massad has since filed a grievance against me, which was thankfully resolved, in yet another attempt to stifle free speech and intimidate those who do not blindly follow his teachings. After four years at Columbia, a university known to encourage free speech and debate, I have never encountered a professor who has fought so diligently to vilify and silence a student who he believed had done nothing more than discuss his class on a blog, which leads me to ask a simple question—what does professor Massad have to hide?

    The author is a senior in the School of Engineering and Applied Science majoring in computer science. He is a campus fellow for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    I have tried for a long time to get the ear of the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) which offers a joint program with Columbia but they aren't interested.

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    Senior Member bararallu's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    What did you say to the JTS people, who per se?

    JTS is, for the most part, staunchly Zionist.

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    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    I asked if JTS could stand up and at least make their voices heard. I lost track of who I tried to cajole.

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    Senior Member bararallu's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Well FYI they do. But only if the joint degree students are affected. They also do it quietly. They get their student body in List college primarily through cooperation with CU/Barnard. They cant publicly spit in the well. The students are typically (but far from always) way better quality as a consequence than other religious based colleges. Y.U. BTW has a program with the Engineering, the School of Mines School (BS degree in CU). Have you written them? Julliard has a joint program with CU as well. Lots of Jews in both.

    Also, many JTS faculty members laid out the landscape for us in CU. We knew pretty much from the first week as to which professors were Jew haters and which where more or less OK. I actually dropped a class with a nasty Assyriologist based solely on the my faculty shaliah at the JTS. They were 1000x more carrying and involved than the CU Hillel, which got worse over the years. Also- in CU there is a Zionist Jewish bulwark in the science faculty. This is often implied, and these guys shun politics, but if you hang out with them and listen they [the Jews] are nearly all anti Humanities for a distinct reason.

    I actually pay dues to the JTS. Someone would have to put a gun to my head to acknowledge CU. The weird thing is there are so many old timers that think if they pay their dues they will get a say in who gets hired and when. ha. This too I've heard a few times.

    The thing is some of the CU survivors are the most devastating critics of the university. Caroline Glick at some point used to drag them through the coals. The dude from Solomonia I think is also an Alum. There are a lot of Zionists made in that school I'll tell you this... its the academic pale of settlement.

    Look at this kid in the story. A true blue Zionist success story. 20... hell 10.. of him in every graduating class, and I dont care if they have their Nekba day on Yom Kippur, we'll win the war. We had something like a few dozen in the Joint degree program my year- pretty much all of us Zionist. Even the 2 in-closet gay dudes and the one legged convert.
    Last edited by bararallu; 04-26-2010 at 10:45 PM.

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    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Quote Originally Posted by bararallu View Post

    The thing is some of the CU survivors are the most devastating critics of the university. Caroline Glick at some point used to drag them through the coals. The dude from Solomonia I think is also an Alum. There are a lot of Zionists made in that school I'll tell you this... its the academic pale of settlement.
    Michael Oren.

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    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    In either case that's good to know. I guess. Sort of.

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    Senior Member Aliyah1995's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    It is a given to stay away from any course labeled "Middle East Studies" in most American universities. I'll give you three guesses to what the course itinerary will be
    "Study astronomy and physics if you desire to comprehend the relation between the world and G-d's management of it." - RaMBaM (Maimonides), Guide For The Perplexed

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    Senior Member bararallu's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Quote Originally Posted by Aliyah1995 View Post
    I'll give you three guesses to what the course itinerary will be
    1. Arafat did in fact look sexy in his bikini
    2. Hanan Ashrawi is not the direct result of Trotskis famous breeding of humans with pan troglodites.
    3. Iran is not trying to harness the power of womens hair in their so called centrifuges.

    Am I right?

  10. #10
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    I'm all for the rebellion of youth. But this is insanity. One of my children goes to UNC Chapel Hill aka the Berkeley of the East. So I'm familiar with leftist ideologues but some of them are flat out stupid.

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    Senior Member Aliyah1995's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Quote Originally Posted by bararallu View Post
    1. Arafat did in fact look sexy in his bikini
    2. Hanan Ashrawi is not the direct result of Trotskis famous breeding of humans with pan troglodites.
    3. Iran is not trying to harness the power of womens hair in their so called centrifuges.

    Am I right?
    Close, but not quite. More like:

    1) Arafat was a peace loving man who just wanted his land back that the evil zionists stole from him.

    2) Hanan Ashrawi is absolutely correct in that Jesus was Palestinian and the Jews persecuted the Palestinians then just as they are now.

    3) Iran is a peace loving country who is just arming themselves to the core with nuclear weapons to defend themselves against the evil zionists who want to conquer the whole world (including the whole Middle East) with America's help.
    "Study astronomy and physics if you desire to comprehend the relation between the world and G-d's management of it." - RaMBaM (Maimonides), Guide For The Perplexed

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    Senior Member Aliyah1995's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Quote Originally Posted by Mediocrates View Post
    I'm all for the rebellion of youth. But this is insanity. One of my children goes to UNC Chapel Hill aka the Berkeley of the East. So I'm familiar with leftist ideologues but some of them are flat out stupid.
    Tarheel [SIGH]. Ok, we can still be friends even though I am a Wolfpack alum
    "Study astronomy and physics if you desire to comprehend the relation between the world and G-d's management of it." - RaMBaM (Maimonides), Guide For The Perplexed

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    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Re: Joseph Massad at Columbia, a student speaks out

    Quote Originally Posted by Aliyah1995 View Post
    Tarheel [SIGH]. Ok, we can still be friends even though I am a Wolfpack alum
    My youngest goes to Carolina, my middle if Wufpack and the eldest is UNC Greensboro.

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