ZOA Criticizes Cong. John Campbell (R-CA) For Failing To Respond To Muslim Student Group’s Israel-Bashing and Possible Fundraising For Hamas In His District At UC Irvine
January 28, 2010

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) criticizes U.S. Congressman John Campbell (R-CA) for his public silence and inaction in response to the troubling and possibly illegal conduct of the Muslim Student Union, a registered student group in his district at the University of California, Irvine.  The ZOA has written to Congressman Campbell, describing the Muslim Student Union’s Israel-bashing and its promotion of anti-Semitic bigotry on the campus, and calling on him to publicly condemn it.  The Congressman took no such action.  Recently, both the ZOA and constituents of the Congressman have alerted him to the troubling possibility that last May, the Muslim Student Union may have used the campus as a base for fundraising for the terrorist group Hamas.  Providing material support and resources to a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization like Hamas is a violation of federal law.  Yet Congressman Campbell has remained silent about this possible legal violation at the public university right in his own district.


For years, the Muslim Student Union has been sponsoring anti-Semitic and Israel-bashing speakers and programs, which have caused Jewish students to feel harassed and intimidated.  On May 21, 2009, the Muslim Student Union featured extremist British politician and Israel-basher George Galloway who spoke about his group called Viva Palestina.  Viva Palestina has been sending “convoys” of vehicles to Gaza loaded with goods, supplies and money, which are supposedly bringing humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza.  But there is growing evidence that Viva Palestina is not a charitable group, but is in fact promoting and supporting Hamas.  Hamas is a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), and providing material support or resources to an FTO is a violation of federal law. 


There is evidence that Galloway and members of the Muslim Student Union solicited funds for Viva Palestina at UC Irvine, which the ZOA brought to the attention of UC Irvine, as well as various government and public officials, including Congressman Campbell.  Two Members of Congress have taken action.


Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA) called on federal government officials to investigate, and also called on UC Irvine’s Chancellor Michael Drake to conduct his own internal probe.  Congressman Sherman also called on Chancellor Drake to condemn the Muslim Student Union’s Israel-bashing events in May 2008 and 2009, as apparently “intend[ing] to encourage violence against the State of Israel and propagate the spread of anti-Semitism.”  Likewise, Congressman Sue Myrick (R-NC), founder of the bipartisan congressional Anti-Terrorism Caucus, called on the U.S. Treasury Department to “swiftly take action to designate Viva Palestina as a supporter of a Foreign Terrorist Organization and thus prevent this group from continuing to provide material and/or financial aid to Hamas.” 


In contrast, Congressman Campbell has never issued any public statement and has never taken any public action in response to the Muslim Student Union’s troubling actions in his own district at UC Irvine.  He has never publicly condemned the group’s Israel-bashing or its promotion of anti-Semitic bigotry. He has never publicly called on Chancellor Michael Drake to himself speak out and condemn the group’s conduct.  In addition, Congressman Campbell has taken no action in response to the disturbing possibility that the Muslim Student Union may have been involved in providing material support and resources to the terrorist group Hamas in violation of federal law. 


The ZOA’s National President, Morton A. Klein, expressed disappointment in Congressman John Campbell’s public silence and inaction:  “We have kept Congressman Campbell apprised of the Muslim Student Union’s conduct at UC Irvine, and his constituents have reportedly contacted him, too.  Why hasn’t Congressman Campbell publicly condemned the anti-Semitic bigotry and Israel-bashing that this group routinely promotes at the university in his district?  Why hasn’t Congressman Campbell shown any public concern over the prospect that the university in his district may have been used to promote terrorism and terrorist groups?  It is especially troubling that a United States Congressman has not responded to the possibility that there may have been a serious violation of federal law occurring right in his own district.”

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