November 25, 2013

Dear President Wong,

We would like to offer further information that may be relevant to your investigation of the AMED-sponsored GUPS event on November 7th, which included an art project with a stencil of a known Palestinian terrorist and one bearing the words “MY HEROES HAVE ALWAYS KILLED COLONIZERS.”

Here are some of the thoughts and sentiments excerpted from the microblog of Mohammad Hammad, the president of GUPS, a registered student organization which receives substantial funding from the university. (Until yesterday the microblog — http://palestinianliberator.tumblr.com/ — was publicly accessible, however now it is password protected, and therefore the links provided below are to re-postings of Hammad’s webpages):

In a posting dated November 23, 2013 and entitled “Rundown of the bullshittery that has been going on lately“:

  • He claimed that “Tammi Benjamin” endangers the safety of his friends, “because this woman is on a racist agenda.”
  • He stated: “As president of the last remaining chapter of GUPS, I will not see our organization fall to the likes of such a bigoted piece of filth [“Tammi Benjamin”], and we’re here to take the battle back to her.”

In a section of his blog tagged “Why you should hate Israel“:

  • Hammad wrote to a Jew living in Israel: “I hate you because you live in and support a nation that continues to benefit off the persecution and ethnic cleansing of my people…And no, we’re not all people. WE are people. You’re an imperialistic shitstain living on the stolen land of my people.”
  • He stated that he laughs at “the pitiful fucks who support Israel.”
  • He claimed that Israel “was taken from us [Palestinians] through blood and violence. And if it takes blood and violence for us to reclaim it, so be it.”

In a posting dated April 23, 2013 and entitled “Why I am no longer, in any sense of the phrase, for the two-state solution“:

  • Hammad stated that he would “vie for the liberation of Palestine through the reclamation of the lands that are rightfully ours through any means necessary.”
  • He also claimed, “Until return, and until liberation, one-state for Palestinians through any means necessary.”

In a posting dated April 28 and re-posted in the microblog “STFU, White Liberals!”:

  • Hammad called Israel a “settler-colonial regime.”
  • He also stated: “Israel is a racist, terror state that has gotten where it is ONLY through the slaughter and ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian population…and hopefully its days are numbered”.

Please understand that we are in no way trying to limit Mr. Hammad’s freedom of speech or suggest that he does not have the right to express his ideas freely on his own microblog.

However, we feel that in order to understand the intent of the GUPS-sponsored art project that included stencils glorifying terrorists and the murder of “colonizers,” it is important for you to observe first-hand the unmitigated hatred that the GUPS president harbors towards Israel and those who support it, as well as his clear desire to eliminate the Jewish state, even through violent means.

We are concerned that Mr. Hammad, as president of a university-sanctioned and funded student organization, may well be injecting his intolerance, bigotry and hate-mongering into the campus activities that his group hosts, including GUPS’ November 7th event.

Thank you for your consideration,

Tammi Rossman-Benjamin and Leila Beckwith
Co-founders, AMCHA Initiative