The Israel stall at the mock UN fair at the International Islamic University in Islamabad. Online Photo
You know you’re intolerant, when you cannot even bear a ‘mock’ Israeli delegation in your university, let alone handle dialogue with a real one.
Recently, turmoil ensued at the model United Nations conference in the International Islamic University of Islamabad (IIUI), when the Israeli cultural stall caused outrage among the right-wing student body. I imagine the stall being part of the ‘Global Village’ festival, in which all participating delegations set up stalls representing their assigned countries.
The IIUI chapter of Islami Jamiat Taliba (IJT) staged a boisterous demonstration against the stall outside the National Press Club, resulting in the suspension of key staff members from the university. The event was cancelled after students smashed the contents of the Israeli stall and allegedly began terrorising the attendees…
…The university’s response was to validate on-campus fanaticism by pandering to IJT’s demands. The IIUI spokesperson said that the university “strongly condemns” the Israeli cultural stall, but found it unnecessary to officially reprimand the baton-wielding, slogan-screaming, stall-smashing students; in doing so, setting a precedent that the university tolerates hooliganism as long as the indignation is righteous.
Not tolerated in IIUI, are faculty members who are simply doing their job, conducting the event the same way it has been conducted countless times before in other worthy educational institutes in Pakistan, not yet fully dominated by right-wing radicals. The event resulted in the suspension of the dean of the faculty of management sciences; a student advisor, and an assistant professor…
And what has Israel ever done to Pakistan to warrant this? Nothing, of course. It is the response of the ‘Ummah’, inflamed by decades of incessant anti-Israel ranting in the Arab world. I have a great idea: how about a few million more Pakistani immigrants?