I just happened to read Jon Weiner's article about the situation regarding Jewish and Muslim students on the UCI campus. The article is filled with misinformation used to drive home an ideological vendetta.
I am a close personal friend of Dr. Daniel Schroeter, former Jewish studies professor at UC Irvine, and I was with Daniel through every struggle he had on the UCI campus regarding the difficult situation that has arisen these past few years. Dr. Schroeter did not leave UCI because of any political pressure put on him by the Jewish community. He left purely because of financial pressures that made it impossible for him to stay in the area. There are other personal matters which I am not at liberty to divulge. But there was no one and nothing from any Jewish or "Zionist" circle that led to his exit from UCI.
In fact, Dr. Schroeter enjoyed only the highest reputation in the Jewish community and among all those engaged in the area of Jewish studies. He took a forthright stand against anti-Semitism on the UCI campus and there was not a day he did not agonize over the difficulty that Jewish students, his students, were having daily on campus.
To camouflage the serious of Muslim anti-Semitism that did threaten the daily life of Jewish students does a disservice to the truth. I also have taught courses in Jewish history on campus and I was witness to the torments, threats, violence and daily berating of Jewish students.
I am also a close personal friend of Dr. Muzammil Siddiqi. Both he and I were invited to Dr. Schroeter's classroom to participate in interreligious dialogue sessions, along with programs we did for the UCI student body. No one from the Jewish community ever suggested that Dr. Siddiqi was a "terrorist." To lay that blame on the Jewish faculty, students, or community leadership is a scurrilous lie that is used to try to impress the outside world that the Jewish community is paranoid, Islamophobic and hysterical.
Stop the nonsense and stick with the truth. The Nation by publishing this piece, in my view, has no credibility whatsoever. You should check out facts before printing garbage and rumors.
dr. stuart altshuler, rabbi
Chapman University<br />Laguna Beach, CA
Nov 18 2008 - 9:59pm