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Oberlin Professor Thanks Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Website for Support

Joy Karega, the Oberlin College professor whose support for anti-Semitic and anti-Israel conspiracy theories was first reported last week by The Tower, offered her thanks for an article at the conspiracy site Veterans Today that claimed she spoke “honestly about 9/11 and the two 2015 Paris false flags.”

In a Facebook post on Thursday that quoted a portion of the article, Karega wrote:

Grateful for this article from Kevin Barrett. Also, grateful for Robin Kelley and the support I’ve gotten from other folks who are close to me and folks I don’t even know who have sent their support through email, calls, etc. Overwhelmed with gratitude. While I continue to receive emails, messages, etc that are filled with slurs (racial, misogynist, and classist), harassment, and threats, this escalation in support has been encouraging. I love what Barrett is proposing here in this article with this debate (and access to scholarship).

“A rabid little Fox is drooling and gnashing its teeth. But that hasn’t stopped Oberlin College from respecting the academic freedom of Professor Joy Karega, who is being witch-hunted by the neocon-Zionist network for speaking honestly about 9/11 and the two 2015 Paris false flags.”

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), an anti-racism watchdog, Veterans Today features “myriad claims that there was a conspiracy behind 9/11 (Israel orchestrated it, in cahoots with the American government), that the American government is a puppet (of Israel), that the Holocaust never happened or was greatly exaggerated (Jews made it up to manipulate non-Jews), and, most recently, that Julian Assange, the man behind Wikileaks, is a pawn (of Israel).”

The SPLC added that the extreme anti-Israel content on Veterans Today “can slide pretty quickly into overt anti-Semitism.” Articles from Veterans Today are frequently quoted on white supremacist sites such as Stormfront and White News Now.

Kevin Barrett, the author of the Veterans Today article on Karega, was the subject of controversy in 2006 when he received a contract to teach an introductory course on Islam from University of Wisconsin, Madison, after publicly supporting the idea that the Bush administration perpetrated the 9/11 terror attacks.

Barrett, a frequently cited “expert” on Iran’s semi-official PressTV website, has also previously claimed that al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden was in the employ of the United States government, among other things.

In his defense of Karega, Barrett reproduced a letter he sent to Oberlin College, in which he contested that the professor was being “hounded” because she promoted the idea that “the Charlie Hebdo attacks may have been a false flag event, and that Israel and its extremist Prime Minister may have helped orchestrate the crime.” Barrett added, “Such views may sound odd or unusual to uncritical consumers of Western mainstream media. But in fact they are both widespread and well-supported by considerable evidence.”

In the letter, Barrett also wrote:

I, too, am outraged by anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. Today virtually all of the world’s Semites are the speakers of Arabic. (“Semite” is a linguistic category, not a racial one.) And I am outraged by the way Arabic Semites have been falsely blamed for the controlled demolition of the World Trade Center, the murders of innocents by large white paramilitary professionals in Paris and San Bernadino, and many similar false flag incidents. These false flag public relations stunts have triggered the murder of more than 1.5 million people and the destruction of the homes and lives of tens of millions more. THIS is the real, indisputable and ongoing Holocaust; you and your colleagues are perpetrating it right now with your tax money, your silences and your lies. The blood of more than a million innocents is on your hands.

Barrett’s appropriation of anti-Semitism to describe hatred of Arabs belies its historical origins. The term anti-Semitism was coined by the 19th century German journalist Wilhelm Marr, who opposed Jewish emancipation and sought to popularize a term that would make Jew-hatred sound more scientific.

Karega came to public attention last week after The Tower published a series of images and posts from her Facebook account, in which she claimed that Israel was behind the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris last year; that the Jewish Rothschild family controls the world’s government, media, and banks; and that the CIA and the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad jointly created the terrorist group ISIS. She has also promoted the claim that President Barack Obama manipulated Hurricane Sandy in order to get re-elected.

An initial short response by Oberlin to the growing controversy prompted Harvard Law School Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz to tell The Tower, “If Karega had expressed comparably bigoted views about Blacks, Muslims or gays, the President of Oberlin … would have condemned those views, even if he defended her right to express them.”

In a longer response to the controversy published earlier this week, Oberlin College President Marvin Krislov acknowledged that the opinions shared by Karega, who he did not identify by name, could cause “pain,” but asserted his commitment to “academic freedom” and did not explicitly condemn her.

A screenshot of yesterday’s post by Karega is included below.


[Photo: Facebook ]