A year ago, a University of California, Irvine investigation found that the Muslim Student Union (MSU) devised a plot to silence a speech by Israel's ambassador and then lied about it to school administrators.
Now that same school has honored that same student group with an award for demonstrating "commitment to transforming the structures of inequality and injustices through reflection and action." The MSU won the school's Cross Cultural Center's Praxis Award at the Anteater Awards ceremony on May 18.
In February 2010, the MSU conspired to disrupt a speech by Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren by standing up during his speech and calling him a murderer and war criminal. The students were following a "game plan" to keep Oren from being heard.
"[O]ur goal should be that he knows that he cant (sic) just go to a campus and say whatever he wants," minutes of an MSU meeting obtained by the Investigative Project on Terrorism show. Members were advised to "push the envelope," in order to "realize our role as the MSU of UCIrvine."
Eleven students involved in the scheme face criminal charges for their roles in the incident and the MSU chapter was suspended for the fall semester.
The Anteater Awards are run through the Dean of Students office at Irvine and winners are "judged by staff and faculty members from across the campus." The MSU chapter finished second as "Most Outstanding Religious Organization."
Additionally, Alkalima, the Muslim student publication, was nominated for "Most Outstanding Student Newsletter." Alkalima has published radical articles and opinion pieces that legitimize terrorist actions. The Muslim magazine also stepped in to fill the void created by MSU's suspension, sponsoring the same contentious events and programs that MSU had planned for the semester, just under the magazine's name.
Yet, the Oren affair was just one of many examples of the chapter's radical behavior. It was investigated for hosting a fundraiser for a group suspected of giving support to Hamas. As a further testament to its duplicity, the MSU did not register the event as a fundraiser when submitting the paperwork to UCI.
It also has been tied to 13 incidents of alleged harassment of Jewish students between 2000 and 2006.
Creating an atmosphere of intimidation and harassment, actively plotting to silence speech on a university campus, lying to school administrators. At UC, Irvine, that is award-winning behavior.