The ambassador persevered, however, and completed his speech once the anti-free speech crowd had been ejected and arrested.
Of the Cal-Irvine administration, Bruce Kesler asks, "where are the adults?"
The University of California campus at Irvine was the scene a few days ago of pro-Palestinian demonstrators interrupting the presentation by Israel’s Ambassador to the US, Michael Oren. Scott Johnson at PowerLine sums up the demonstrators’ core proposition: "The actions are based on the proposition that the defense of Israel in speech is beyond the bounds of civilized discourse just as the defense of Israel in deed is illegitimate because Israel is illegitimate."
...Max Boot, a graduate of "Berzerkley", wrote at Contentions, of this and similar campus attacks, “Anything short of expulsion, or at least suspension, would seem to be a wrist-slap that will only encourage more such misconduct in the future and make a mockery of the free speech that universities are supposed to champion.”
The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial read: “It was an embarrassing display of inhospitality [at Irvine]. It was also a wasted opportunity. The critics should have stayed and listened. As a U.S.-born scholar on the Middle East and a best-selling author with a Ph.D. from Princeton, Oren has much to say about one of the most important and interesting corners of the globe.”
By contrast, Ambassador Oren appeared at the University of California campus at San Diego a few days later... In sharp contrast, UCSD’s administration demonstrated resolve and determination to conduct a program in a peaceful and civilized manner and in the best traditions of the university’s commitment to freedom of speech and exchange of ideas. The presentation started with a strong statement from Peter Cowhey, Dean of the UC San Diego School of International Relations and Pacific Studies, that interruptions would not be tolerated during Ambassador Oren’s presentation and that members of the audience would have the opportunity to ask questions at the end of the presentation. The lecture proceeded smoothly..."
Though the Q&A was dominated by pro-Palestinian students, “Ambassador Oren responded to each question with the knowledge of the accomplished historian that he is and with the wisdom of a true diplomat.”
If you'd like to voice your displeasure for its continued support of lawlessness and discord, contact UC-Irvine's Chancellor Michael Drake and the California Board of Regents.