With the pending retirement of San Francisco State University President Les Wong, don't expect the campus to recover some sense of sanity. After all, this is San Francisco State we're are talking about. The "talent pool" within academia to replace Wong is loaded with free agent prospects, to borrow a baseball term. In addition, Professor Rabab Abdulhadi, every employer's worst nightmare. is still around.
It must be pointed out that for several years, Wong was Abdulhadi's protector and enabler. He openly expressed his support for the odious General Union of Palestinian Students (GUPS) even when they brought shame to his school with their murderous posters and the then-head of GUPS brandishing a knife on video and expressing his desire to kill Israeli soldiers.
Even when Abdulhadi flew off to the Holy Land with funds approved to attend a conference in Lebanon that never materialized and instead met with a collection of bad hombres in the region, Wong stood by his gal.
Then things went wrong though it is unclear to this writer how and where Wong decided that a line had been crossed. After years of ignoring the bullying and intimidation of Jewish students by the GUPS brown shirts and years of ignoring letters of complaint by Jewish organizations like the Amcha Initiative, Wong finally decided earlier this year that he had to issue a statement to the effect that Jewish students with Zionist (pro-Israel) sympathies were, indeed, welcome at SFSU-contrary to anti-semitic posters that appeared on campus. That didn't sit well with Abdulhadi, who publicly wrote that Wong was attacking Muslims and pro-Palestinian "freedom fighters" on campus, only further inflaming the issue. She donned the victim's robes. Even the feckless California State University Chancellor Timothy White was drawn in promising "firm" action against the renegade professor. Whatever that firm action was is lost on me.
The problem with Abdulhadi is that she cannot take criticism. She loves to inflame feelings against those who disagree with her Palestinian sympathies. (She is Palestinian, herself.) When others take her to task, she acts like the victim. She cannot engage in the marketplace of ideas with those who oppose her. In May 2015, when she and a couple of her GUPS protegees were scheduled to appear at UC Irvine as part of the annual "Israel Apartheid" week of events, she and her flunkies mysteriously failed to materialize on stage when the Muslim Student Union failed to prevent me from videotaping. (They had to have been there somewhere because there were two microphones and three empty chairs on stage that were never filled.) There never was an announcement that Abdulhadi had had to cancel. Instead, after 30 minutes of wrangling with a university official about me, they brought on a Skype conversation with some nondescript Palestinian guy in Washington DC).
So in my book, Abdulhadi is a coward. And I'm not writing behind her back because I sent her an email after her "no-show". Naturally, she never responded.
Abdulhadi, just like UC Berkeley professor Hatem Bazian and so many other agitators infesting the various Middle East Studies departments around the country, are part of the degeneration of what passes for higher education these days. They add nothing to scholarship; all they do is spread propaganda on behalf of the dysfunctional Arab world and the Muslim world, as well as propaganda against Western Civilization, America and Israel. They have had a major-MAJOR- influence in spreading anti-semitism on our campuses. A large part of their funding comes from that evil place called Saudi Arabia. That alone should tell you all you need to know.
As for Wong, he will not be missed. His belated message this year that Zionists were welcome at SFSU-whatever that meant- is too little too late. He was a weak administrator who allowed his campus for years to be a place of intimidation for Jewish students while allowing Abdulhadi and her GUPS pals free rein. It is beyond debate that Abdulhadi dragged Wong's reputation into the ground. This is not to excuse Wong. He allowed her to do it.