As reported last month by Arutz-7, Professor Francisco Gil-White of the University of Pennsylvania charged his department heads with attempting to have him fired because of his pro-Israel and pro-Serbian views. This week saw a new type of intimidation at U. Penn.
In an interview with Jared Israel of Emperor's New Clothes website, Prof. Gil-White reports he received a call from his department chairman, Psychology Prof. Robert J. DeRubeis, on March 3.
Gil-White: Prof. DeRubeis said he believed I'd seen the confidential files with student comments on my reappointment. He said he was going to call the students from whom letters of evaluation concerning my teaching record had been solicited and - these are his words - warn them that, and I quote, I might ‘take retaliatory action against them,' unquote. He actually said he was going to make such phone calls!
Now first of all, this is a kind of slander because I'd never punish students, give them bad grades or anything, for speaking their mind. Students have made this very point in supporting me against the University's attempt to silence me. Just read the comments at the bottom of the story about the attempted firing at the Daily Pennsylvanian.
But in addition, this totally unprofessional threat to make slanderous phone calls is an escalation of the attempted intimidation that's been going on for two years."
Israel: Have you seen the reappointment files?
Gil-White: I don't know why he thinks that, but even if I had, the point is, I've got no problem with students. I've charged, and this was picked up by Israel National News, that Prof. Ian Lustick, who's a US intelligence strategist, has pressed to get me out because he doesn't want my views on Israel and Serbia expressed at the Solomon Asch Center. Whatever I have seen, Prof. DeRubeis has certainly seen everything that's in those files. Is he scared I might see it because there's stuff in there that confirms what I've said about Lustick?
Jared Israel then called Prof. Robert DeRubeis the evening of March 3:
Jared Israel: Good evening, this is Jared Israel reporting for Emperor's Clothes and possibly Israel National News. I just got off the phone with Prof. Gil-White. He told me you called today and told him you thought that he had seen some confidential personnel files.
DeRubeis: I don't have anything, I don't have anything to say to you.
Israel: Did you have that conversation about the per-
DeRubeis: I don't, I don't know who you are, I don't know why I [need to?] talk to you.
Israel: OK. Emperor's Clothes –
Israel: That's the website that-
DeRubeis: I don't have any comment about this - I don't know why –
Israel: You haven't told him that you were going to tell students who'd written letters for files that he was going to quote "take some retaliatory action" unquote - ?
DeRubeis: I have no comment on this - this is absurd –
At which point Prof. DeRubeis hung up on Israel.