More Anti-Israel Speakers on Campus
The speakers will be Dianna Buttu (formerly a lawyer for the terrorist PLO) and Eddie Makue (South African activist).
Both claim to be supporters of the Palestinian cause, although their extreme rhetoric and uncompromising positions are typical of those that make a solution to the problem more difficult.
Diana Buttu is slightly more incendiary. In response to an interviewer who asked “What is your impression of the PLO-Israel negotiations?” she said “That of a child rape victim negotiating with the rapist.”
Even worse, during a Global Exchange tour in the U.S., November 2002 she remarked that “People say, ‘How can we get the Palestinians to stop the suicide bombings?’ That’s like saying to a rape victim, ‘Make sure not to hurt him, don’t scratch his eyes.’ It’s demanding that the oppressed protect the oppressor.”
Makue is not a lot better, constantly claiming that Israeli treatment of the Palestinians is like apartheid in South Africa. Indeed, he has proclaimed:
If the struggle to abolish apartheid in South Africa was an example of how ‘people of conscience in the international community have historically shouldered the moral responsibility to fight injustice… through diverse forms of boycott, divestment and sanctions’, then we have no choice but to help shoulder the responsibility to abolish the apartheid that seeks to oppress and destroy the Palestinian people.That the Palestinians, who have engaged in a virtually constant campaign of terrorism against Israel, are themselves largely responsible for restrictions on their movement is something Makue doesn’t seem to recognize.
As one observer put it:
I in no way condone or agree with the way Israel has conducted its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, and believe it was a huge strategic and costly military mistake to build the settlements on Palestinian land after 1967. At the same time, Israel’s actions must be viewed in the context of the overall conflict: the Palestinians’ refusal since 1948 to recognize Israel’s right to exist and their decision to resort to airplane hijackings, murder on the high seas, suicide bombings and other forms of terrorism and armed conflict.We are happy to report that this event is not sponsored by Marquette, but rather by the Arab Student Association. Marquette has a rather sordid record of one-sided programming attacking Israel and supporting rather extreme pro-Palestinian speakers.
Rightly or wrongly, Israel has concluded that while it tries to negotiate a settlement of the conflict, it has to ensure its survival and safety through its military strength and superiority. This context in no way resembles the situation in which apartheid was developed as an ideology and social system in South Africa.
Just letting a student organization present the speakers it wants is an entirely different matter.
But it still remains the case that discourse on campus is badly biased on this issue, and both sides need to be heard.
We would urge people to show up and ask pointed, but civil, questions. Questions about Palestinian terrorism should be particularly interesting.