Wednesday, April 28, 2010

UC San Diego : President Says NO to Divestment

Utsav Gupta gets it. I hope our ASUC does the right thing tonight, as well.

UC San Diego, LA JOLLA, CA 92093-0077

It is not often that a student association has an opportunity to consider legislation and take a stand on issues of national and international import. As an Association, we have passed resolutions to promote what we believe and hope will make a better world. We have taken stances against sweat shop labor, unfair trade practices, and violations of civil rights. We aspire not only to be students in support of the progress of our own nation, but to also be global citizens who answer the call for aid. It is a basic civic duty awarded to us as a representative government, and one that is codified in our Constitution.

However, these past few days, I have watched as our campus climate has gotten worse. I have witnessed the creation of two competing groups and camps around a singular contentious issue: the consideration of a resolution at our ASUCSD Council meeting today. In many ways, I am watching history repeat itself.

Last year, when a resolution was proposed concerning the conflict in Gaza, two student groups came to several ASUCSD Council meetings, passionately defending and advocating for their world point-of-view their perspective on an issue that even our best international leaders have yet to successfully resolve.

Some of these students believed they were compelled to come to this meeting to defend a country they hold dear. Others came to the meeting advocating for peace and human rights, hoping to lead the Association towards what they argued was progress. What is tragic is that both groups were correct, incorrect, misinformed, and made some good and bad points. The issue was a complicated one, something that the ASUCSD Council was obviously ill-equipped to solve.

Now that a year has passed, we are still ill-equipped to resolve this issue. Consideration of this resolution today will only prove again for us one thing: that it is divisive. It is dividing our students, pitting groups against each other who are fighting to be represented by their student association. They should not have
to fight for the voice of our Association. We could not call any resolution approved through this process representative of the students at our university. And thus, I do not believe our student association can or should take a stance on this resolution.

I am not here to choose or argue sides. For me, the most important consideration is the welfare of the student body at the University. Passage of this legislation will create a divide that violates the goals and purposes of our Association. To this end, I will be voting against the passage of this resolution. I urge my colleagues to do the same.

I am truly proud to be a part of the extraordinary institution that is UC San Diego. The University has given us these words to live by: Local Impact, National Influence, and Global Reach. Issues such as these prove that, as a student body, we are strong and passionate. Despite what happens in our Council tonight, remember that, together, we are Tritons, and that we will continue to make an impact wherever we go.

Sincerely yours,

President, Associated Students
University of California, San Diego


  1. Leena Barakat specifically targets only one country - Israel. Just one. No other.
    None of the loathsome inhuman regimes that oppose Israel is mentioned, nor any of the failed states in Africa, Asia, and South America.
    No other country is so villified and excoriated, no other country is held to such high standards, no other country need answer to university students in San Diego.

    Either you are FOR peace and human rights - in which case you support Israel - or you oppose peace and human rights - and find yourself on the same side as all the ghastly gangster regimes that for the past generation have sought common cause in supporting each other.

    Such countries as Afghanistan, Angola, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, China, Cuba, Djibouti, Egypt, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Rhodesia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uruguay, and Venezuela. None of these have been subject to boycott and divestment calls, none of these have good or even bearable human rights records, all of which are governed by gangsters and profiteers.
    And all of which are held in high esteem internationally, paragons among the united nations.

    As are two I did not mention: Iran and North Korea. Paragons.

    Read more here:

  2. Divestment has a long history of failing, everywhere it rears its ugly head.

    This is cribbed from the best source of information on BDS on the entire web,

    * The Swedish Cooperative Union has ruled out boycotts of Israeli goods at Swedish cooperative stores. (Perhaps they are following the Rochdale Principles on political and religious neutrality cited by the Davis Food Co-op when they unanimously rejected a boycott last year.)

    * Canada (the land where the Buycott was born) is issuing a postage stamp commemorating 60 years of Canada-Israel diplomatic relations. The usual suspects are planning a boycott. It’s unclear how they will do this, given that no one buys stamps any longer.

    * At last week’s Israel-bashing blarney-fest at the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, the local Israeli union representative gave the assembled delegates what for after the Irish Foreign Minister criticized the union’s boycott calls and former Irish President Mary Robinson refused to attend the meeting. This was all largely moot since the recent volcanic eruption in Iceland, which has halted most European airline travel, meant few people were actually able to make it to the event.

    For that last victory, credit has to go to Yakov Shmiplewitz, the Learned Elder of Zion currently responsible for the earth’s crust


    The organizers wnat you to think that BDS is a "grassroots" movement, but it is carefully financed and organized from outside sources.

    These notes were taken at the Al Awda conference at La Mesa, California earlier this year:

    Next up for SJP at SDSU came Lina Othman, head of the group’s outreach department. Othman, explained how the UC Divestment program had developed a campus-wide network in California tailored for each campus community. For example, she explained, the climate at UC Berkeley might be different than the one at San Diego State when it came to divesting from the Jewish state.

    Othman epitomized the use of deception by the divestment movement just as Al Awda uses in giving such conferences. Othman told us how SDSU had already three SJP members on the Student Council and they were gunning for ten including the Student Body Presidency. Once they had control of the campus, she explained, they would then institute a campus-wide policy. It was bemoaned during this session that an earlier resolution by her campus against the genocide in Darfur had made a point of saying that it did not include Israel. To get around this, Othman explained that future boycott and divestment actions at SDSU would single out “human rights violations” as the cause of pointing out certain companies and individuals to boycott. It was to be specifically about boycotting and divesting from Israel—the Jews—but they wouldn’t say that so as to deceive people.

  4. Go Bears! Berkeley came through. And one of the Senators read this statement to the group.