William Bowen, former president of Princeton University and a nationally respected higher education leader, in his commencement address Sunday at Haverford College in Pennsylvania blasted student as “immature” and “arrogant” for protesting another speaker who subsequent withdrew, a “defeat” for the Quaker college and its ideals; the Quaker values of dignity, tolerance and respect.
William Bowen used his commencement speech to criticize students who campaigned against Robert J Bigueneau, former chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley.
“More than 40 students and three professors had protested Birgeneau’s invitation to speak, objecting to his handling of a 2011 incident at Berkeley in which police used force at a student protest. The group wanted Birgeneau to apologize, support payments for victims, and write a letter to Haverford students explaining his position on the events and “what you learned from them.”
Birgeneau, who was also supposed to receive an honorary degree from Haverford, refused those demands and others in a terse email.”
Birgeneau is one of several commencement speakers who have canceled their appearances this spring amid student protests.
Predictably another Israeli-Palestinian peace process has failed. How is that so many can try so hard for so long and still fail to make any process? Jonathan Spyer, writing at PJ Media, clearly expresses an excellent insight of the failure of the peace talks that can be traced back to the fantasy world in which most Palestinian leaders live and which they keep many of their people locked into also.
The Palestinians see themselves as part of the local majority Arabic-speaking Sunni Muslim culture. From this point of view, the establishment of a non-Muslim sovereignty in Israel was not only an injustice, it was also an anomaly. Israel, being an anomaly, is therefore bound eventually to be defeated and disappear. So there is no need to reconcile to it, with all the humiliation therein.
What May Be Next?
Palestinian nationalism in both its Fatah and Hamas variants rejects the possibility of accepting the permanence of Jewish statehood in any part of the area west of the Jordan River.
For the Palestinian Authority, the nine-month period of negotiations came as an unwelcome interruption to a very different strategy to which it will now return. This strategy consists of an attempt to place pressure on Israel through action in international forums to isolate and delegitimize the Jewish state.