My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (

Sunday, April 24, 2005

AUT Barred Israeli Academic from speaking....

The Association of University Teachers (AUT) in the UK refused a request from an academic at Bar-Ilan University to rebut accusations of rights abuses against Palestinians.
The request to send a speaker to the conference was made on Tuesday by Prof Yosef Yeshurun, the rector of Bar-Ilan. He also asked if Prof Telcher could address the conference on Thursday, rather than Friday, to allow her to return home for the start of Passover yesterday. Prof Yeshurun was told that no external visitors were allowed to speak for or against motions and that the date could not be changed.

Delegates to the conference in Eastbourne were told that Bar-Ilan University had links with a college in what the union described as an "illegal settlement" in the occupied West Bank.

Ronnie Fraser, the chairman of the Academic Friends of Israel, said that the AUT had repeatedly manoeuvred to prevent an opposing voice being heard.

Lord Janner, the chairman of the Holocaust Educational Trust, condemned the union's decision. He said: "They obviously did not want to hear the other case. I am deeply shaken by the vote and the curtailment of reasoned debate. It is a setback for academic freedom."
As we blogged earlier, the AUT voted to support a boycott against two Israeli Universities, Haifi University and Bar-Ilan University.