This item is available on the Militant Islam Monitor website, at http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/2701
February 6, 2007
MIM: Note that the official Guilford College statement makes no mention that the men looking to attack the players were Middle Eastern in appearence and claimed to be Muslims.
College's Response to a Feb. 4 Incident in Bryan Hall
Guilford College Public Safety and the Greensboro Police Department responded to a brief incident in Bryan Hall on campus at midday Sunday, Feb. 4.
Based on the public safety report:• At about Noon, three individuals from off campus entered Bryan Hall and approached a suite that is the residence of several football players.
It is important to note that the football players and other students involved in the Jan. 20 incident in Bryan Hall were not in the hall during today's (Feb. 4) incident. They were moved off campus following the Jan. 20 incident.
Within two hours of today's (Feb. 4) event, the Community Response Team, led by President Chabotar, took these actions:• Notified or attempted to notify parents of all students directly involved in the Jan. 20 incident.
While the college does not know what these outsiders intended to do on our campus, the college, as it has since Jan. 20, will continue to monitor who is on our campus and to safeguard the best interests of our campus family.
Feb. 4, 2007
------------------------Around 12:15 AM on January 20, 2007, a physical altercation involving Guilford students and one student from another college took place inside the Byran Hall courtyard. Three Palestinian students allege that they were taunted with insults by being called things such as "dirty," "terrorists," and "sand nigger". According to some reports, certain members of the Guilford College football team beat the Palestinians with "fists, feet, and brass knuckles". On January 21st, three members of the football team were charged with assault and ethnic intimidation. All are free on $2,000 bond; all individuals involved in the incident are allowed to continue classes but have been asked to relocate off campus. On January 25th, after a student demonstration, two additional football players were charged with assault.
Supporters of the accused football players complain that the response has been slanted against those now charged with the assault. Some eyewitness reports suggest that the Palestinian students actually provoked the incident; reporting that the physical confrontation began when one Palestinian struck a football player with his belt and that brass knuckles were not used. Those sympathetic to the athletes fear a rush to judgment much like in the Duke Lacrosse team assault case. Furthermore, according to a WGHP Fox 8 news report a parent of one of the accused students asserted that her son sustained a stab wound in the incident. The parent said that police and college officials have yet to allow the football players to give their account of the incident, and the local magistrate denied their request to press counter-charges.
The college is currently investigating the attack, and has issued a statement. On Thursday, 2007-01-25, Guilford College's President Kent Chabotar and Dean for Campus Life Aaron Fetrow granted an interview to the local Fox affiliate (video).
MIM: According to Pipeline News there has been no account of Faris Khader and Osama Sabbah's savage beating of a Jewish student at Guilford:http://www.pipelinenews.org/index.cfm?page=guilford2107.htm
Absent from the media coverage has been any account of the early morning altercation other than that being presented by the Ramallah students.
Sources familiar with the incident have now come forward stating the the attack was initiated by the Palestinian students.
One of those sources told us that the weekend that the event took place was a:
"recruiting weekend for the college [that on] on that type of week athletes are on best behavior [the confrontation took place in] a courtyard in between apartment buildings…a hangout spot…[an eyewitness to the event saw] Faris [Khader] and Mike Six [one of the football players] [with] an argument going on…[the witness had turned away but turned back to view the scene again when] he heard the belt whipping, looked back and saw the belt…[Mr. Six] took about seven strikes from the belt……[Mr. Six then] used a wrestling move and stuffed him [Faris] into the ground….that started a fumble….[like] a rugby match...[which drew in more football players, there were] no brass knuckles….[involved]"
Mr. Khader was suspended from Guilford for the Winter Semester.
The College refuses to comment on Mr. Khader's status believing that to be confidential information.
According to information provided by our sources and as detailed by a former [Jewish] Guilford student [whose name we are not disclosing at this time], Mr. Khader has a history of violence.
According to a weblog maintained by this student he was attacked by Mr. Khader and Mr. Sabbah, the account of which we present below in its entirety. We made the decision to redact the names of persons mentioned aside from the principals.
"I lost sleep over this decision but dealing w/ the work in sculpture and drums , classes, labs and tests i'd have to make up on top of this political mess....ahhhh!!!
im taking a medical leave!!!for people that don't know what happened that night i got jumped...twice by faris and osama; two students who I had never met, seen, or heard about ever at Guilford, certainly didn't know their ethnicity or nationality as Palestinians. keep in mind I took another break from school last spring and for 5 months, i was gone from my school and now, I was trying to finally graduate. So I go to [name withheld] ( a friend that graduated last year from Guilford) house on a sat. night, he's having a snazzy dress up shirt and tie type deal party going on. I had heard of nothing else really big goin on that night, threw on my cleanest pair of jeans and got out a bullshit collared shirt. I was called out on my lack of dress but I didn;t care. i got there early and posted up with 8 beers but gave a bunch away that night, I barely drank at all cause I took over as DJ and made that room bump with Jackson 5 and tons of old classics, and a couple new joints. Its the end of the night but what I didn;t know what was about to go down; or that these kids, Osama and Faris , would beat down on me , had already gotten into trouble that night. One of them was caught stealing a KITCHEN KNIFE from [name withheld] kitchen by one of [name withheld] roomates, who told either Osama or Faris whomever was out of line to put it back and they did. I don;t know when [name withheld] was hit in the face that night, but I have a pretty good idea when [name withheld] and [name withheld] roomate were assaulted as well. I was trying to back up in a car with [name withheld] and if u know [name withheld] driveway which about half-of u or more won't...its small and when theres a party there kids have to get out of the way. this party had a lot of people in the front of the house which is basically all driveway with cars intermingled on the fringe and kids hanging out. So we are ready to leave and we start the car and tell kids to get out of the way, but some kids aren't moving. So [name witheld] or his roomates start moving kids back out of the way, and they were doing this kindly just explaining that in order for us to leave that these people would have to move. But then a fight breaks out, a small tustle between John who lived at this place and Faris; I guess it wasn't a fight 'cause John didn't hit Faris back. This all happened within a span of three minutes so its hard to get all the details out.
So that tustle is sort of broken up, and we think we can finnally leave and then Faris and Osama get it in again with someone else, I believe Scott, but it could have been [name witheld] honestly I do not know. But what I do know is that I got fed up with all this nonsense and I had one foot in the car and one foot out as I looked at Faris and Osama and told them "This bullshit has got to stop; all we are trying to do is leave." Then Faris came over and I could tell he was drunk and out of control; he had this look to him like he was about to snap at any second. Then he slammed the door on my leg, which he later would claim was an accident and I could actually see that being that it was weird footing and he was drunk but then he lunged at me and before I had a chance to defend myself or do anything to Faris, I was held back by a crowd of 4-5 kids, but Osama and Faris were not held back and punched me at least twice in the face, enough to give me a nice shiner (Northern slang for a black eye), a mini shiner on my left eye and a cut beneath the eye as well. I was furious and angry but I had no idea who these kids were or why they had hit me, or why i was held back and they weren't, but mostly i wanted to know why had such an awesome night had turned out so, so shitty? I had people holding me back, way after they were done pulling my dreads to keep my head down in order to give me those two "shiners." That night was awful and it only got worse. I finally was done pushing kids off of me and started to calm down but I wanted to know who those kids were that hit me.
After the initial adrenaline rush was out of me I left in a car, still amped up I wanted to know who would do this at a Guilford party, I hadn't been in a fight or anything close to what happened that night the 4 years+ (working on the 5th year senior status) I've been at Guilford. I went Bryan cause that where I heard they lived on the second floor. And sure enough they were there sitting on the steps outside second floor of Bryan. but before I got up there [name withheld, a hall monitor] ran into me saw me with my t-shirt off and my face all messed up from the earilier scrap, and she tried to stop me. instead i went past her, and went up the stairs to confront the two kids who had punched me for no apparent reason. I find them on the stairs and they immediately recognize me, Faris seemed still sloshed at this point, and i said to them as they stood up off the steps to confront me, " I wanna know why you punched me, why were you startin shit," but before anything can happen [name withheld] the, on duty hall director in Bryan gets between us to intervene, sensing that something might happen. Faris sits back down for a second, as I;m trying to explain to [name withheld] what had happened at the off campus party, Faris threatens my life twice, saying "I'm gonna fucking kill you" and making a motion across his neck.After the first time he said it, I told him, " You don;t know me, and you don't know who I know" Then he repeated his death threat to me in the exact same fashion as before and then lunges at me and grabs my neck for about 2 secs. before he either realized what he was doing and stops or stopped cause [name withheld] was there. So she intervenes again and thats when they jumped me, i wasn't expecting to brawl out there in Bryan with [name withheld], a hall director, less then a hundred yards from public safety office. They caught me by surprise and yanked my head down by hair and proceeded to beat me for about 3-4 minutes, they got a lot of punches in, it seemed like foreve and I was crying out for help, all [name withheld] could do was watch as Public safety finnally got to the scene and they realized and got off of me. They beat my back more then anything else, i don;t know if i was just punched or if i was also kicked all I knew was that I was wolloped by this time and wouldn't think it would still hurt me today. Then Osama and Faris lied twice to security that I had a knife on me, so i was searched after getting my ass kicked, and of course there was no knife or anything on me that could have been a weapon, but they tried to sell it again to security after they searched me the first time. Of course they left the knife accusation out of the report they filed with campus life. [name withheld] was there during the entire part of the confrontation that occured on campus and she never heard me say anything
So when did I know that Osama and Faris were Palestinian? I found out who Osama and and Faris were as I was finally leaving [name witheld] and on the car ride back to Guilford, that they were Palestinian students. This did not at all change my view of them or what they had done to me and others, on top of ruining the end of that party with some violence. I knew some Palestinian students, [names withheld] who I was close with throughout their four years at Guilford, but now they have graduated . I've been to Palestinian rallies...i get shit all the time for being a jew that's against Israel by some of my family, and even some peers.... I wrote my final IDS paper for my SO/AN major on the liberation of Palestine; and I've taken five or more classes on that deal specifically with race and racism. If you ask anyone who knows me, or has ever had a class with me they know that if anything I'm an anti-racist, not as much of an active anti-racist as I was in highschool, but people certainly no that I stand for something, and that something is social justice.
The 16 people from Guilford who were jailed during the IMF-World Bank Protest with me know it. And I know that theres people within this community that know who I am and what I stand for and would've come to me about all this instead of doing it behind my back. Now thats why I have a problem. Cause I just got on the e-mail lists about all these meetings to get me punished. I mean I've been put through enough physical pain,especially those first two weeks after this incident; when I couldn't take a shit without being in severe pain I had a pinched nerve or something awful cause I would get this shock of pain when i moved the wrong way. I'm talking taking like 20-30 seconds to get into the car cause my back would sieze up and i'd get tazed, it was like a hot knife shot down my back into my hip and partly down my thigh, it was awful and I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemy what I've been thru, and to be honest my back still doesn't feel normal and its been at least three weeks. Beyond the physical pain; the humiliation of walking around with a limp that just now subsided and two black eyes for about a week was certainly a humbling experience to say the least. Now my character is being attacked and that, to me; is the textbook definition ADDING INSULT TO INJURY. It seems like someone is hell bent on tossing everything I;ve stood for out the window. Every single time that I've stood up for something at Guilford, and anybody that knows me, or has taught me knows that I'm an anti-racist. But it seems ridiculous to me that I even have to prove myself to anyone, cause I know what I stand for, and I know what I said that night, and there is not a single doubt in my mind that I did NOT say those things,"Osama bin Laden", or "terrorist." I do not know if they were said but I know I did not hear them, but I do know that the three other people that were assaulted that night by Osama and Faris did not say them, were racist things said before the five times or more, there were incidents that night. Faris and Osama looked to me to be out of control that night and anybody else who was there would certainly say the same and they have. All the people I have named have all put statements into campus life and corroborate the events of that night; all the events I have just told. Faris and Osama did come to me the next to day to pseudo-apologize; they tol;d me they were sorry for beating the shit out of me but it was because I said racist things, than Faris did admit that he had asked around to see if i would have said those things and people told him no. It wasn't until the meeting with campus life did it become apparent that this was the angle these guys were gonna take for beating up a kid in second floor Bryan during peek hours in front of a hall director, it was in the schools hands now; and these guys knew they were in trouble. I have no problem with Osama or Faris being at Guilford, I'd love to talk about all this with them, but its the school that made the decision based upon the four people that were hurt that night by them; the descisiton that at least Faris would have to be suspended on account that he endangered the community, was not mine. It was the schools. And assaulting anybody on Guilford, in front of a hall directory should warrant a serious punishment."
We believe that the above information clearly constitutes strong evidence that the so-called hate attack allegedly initiated by Guilford College football team members against defenseless Palestinian students is a hoax and that the members of the football team were acting in self-defense - even absorbing a vicious attack before responding.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Jan. 20 Bryan Hall courtyard incident and a college response to each:
The State of the Campus
1. How does the College view the event?
As an institution and individuals, we are sorry that the incident happened. We sympathize with any student who was injured, and their friends and families. We ask everyone to let the internal College judicial process and the external charges now before the criminal justice system be adjudicated before making conclusions about the facts and who should be held responsible.
2. What is the emotional state of the campus in the wake of this incident?
Many students are upset that the event occurred, and have met and gathered to air their concerns. Otherwise the campus is calm. Extra security has been added to increase the feelings of safety and security on campus and especially among students.
3. Will the College do anything to bridge what appears to be a divide between student-athletes and non-student-athletes?
Approximately one quarter of Guilford's 1,100 students residing on campus participate in intercollegiate athletics. The College is aware that some hard feelings exist between student-athletes and non-student-athletes and is taking steps to unite the two groups. These steps include having student-athletes more involved in the various activities on campus, and providing wider campus participation in athletic events.
4. This has been called a "hate crime" by some people, was it?
Guilford College applies the guidelines of the U.S. Department of Education when considering if an offense was a hate crime. The Handbook for Campus Crime Reporting indicates on page 41 that, "Before an incident can be classified as a hate crime, sufficient objective facts must be present to lead a reasonable and prudent person to conclude that the offender's actions were motivated in whole or in part, by bias." The College's Student Handbook, which includes the Code of Conduct, does not specifically address hate crimes but it does provide that verbal, non-verbal, written or physical abuse of another person is a violation of the Code of Conduct. The Judicial Review Committee, drawn from the Judicial Board of trained faculty and students, reviews the judicial policies and procedures on a regular basis, and they will be revised as appropriate. Until the fact-finders in our internal judicial process have reviewed all of the evidence, any classification of this incident would be premature.
5. Was "hate speech" used in the incident?
As with the issue of "hate crime," the College has conflicting accounts of what was said during and after the incident. Still, if some of the racial epithets being reported by the media as being said were said, their use would be highly offensive, inappropriate and may constitute "hate speech."
6. The Public Safety response to the incident has been described by some as slow. Is that the case?
An officer responded within less than five minutes after they were called. Reports of a 30-40 minute delay in response to the incident after the call was made are contradicted by department log.
7. What is the policy for students calling 911?
If a student is witness to, or involved in, a threatening situation and feels more comfortable dialing 911 then this is the appropriate course of action. The College strongly encourages its students to call Public Safety at extension 2911 so officials have knowledge of a situation on campus. Asking our students to call x2911 decreases Public Safety response time. .
8. How can such a hateful incident happen on the campus of a Quaker-founded college?
As we all know, conflict sometimes occurs on every campus, even ours. The College will continue to gather facts and address any problems it finds.
9. Doesn't the incident indicate that Guilford's student-athletes are out of control or, at the least, troublemakers?
No. These are actions of individuals who, if found responsible, will be disciplined.
10. The College moved some of the students involved in the incident off campus. Why was this done?
Some students involved in the incident were required to reside off campus temporarily as the judicial process continues in order to facilitate the investigation and bring a sense of calm to the campus community.
11. How can the College be sure that an incident of this type won't happen again?
No institution can make that promise. Still, this incident has alerted the College to the need for increased attention to educating on the strength of diversity, relationships between student-athletes and non-student-athletes and other issues that may need more attention in order that incidents of this type don't happen in the future.
College Judicial Procedures and External Criminal Charges
12. The College says violence and verbal abuse will not be tolerated on campus. When the facts are in, what action will be taken toward those responsible?
A student found responsible under the College's Student Code of Conduct can face sanctions ranging from community restitution to permanent dismissal.
13. What does it mean to participate in the fact-finding phase of the faculty-student judicial hearing process at Guilford College?
Receiving internal charges, or participating in the fact-finding phase of the faculty-student judicial hearing process, is merely a mechanism to ascertain facts. It is not an indictment. If the facts presented to the Judicial Board indicate that a charged party is not responsible, the charges are dropped and purged from the student's judicial record.
14. What is the difference between internal and external criminal charges?
Internal charges at Guilford College are used to ascertain facts and are assigned when Public Safety or Residence Life staff reports indicate or student complaints indicate that students were involved in a violation of the Student Code of Conduct.
External charges result from an arrest warrant, based either on an affidavit outlining probable cause for arrest, or on the oath of affiance of an aggrieved party to a magistrate (this means swearing to a judge the truth of your allegations). This is not a Guilford College process.
15. What is the standard of proof for internal and external charges?
The standard of proof is different between Guilford's judicial system and the criminal justice system. At Guilford, our standard of proof in the Student Code of Conduct is "preponderance of evidence." This means that there is a determination that something is more likely than not to be true. In the criminal justice system, the standard of proof is "beyond a reasonable doubt," which requires more certainty.
16. What about "self-defense?"
"Self-defense" is what the courts call an "affirmative defense." This means that the accused student has the right to argue to the judicial board (saying to the board) that "I was acting in self-defense and should be found not responsible for any charges."
Jan. 26, 2007
This item is available on the Militant Islam Monitor website, at http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/2701