Chutzpah

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The following editorial appearing  in UC Irvines New University on December 1, 2010, makes an astonishing claim:   “It must be made clear that the vast majority of the Jewish community in Orange County, including the Jewish Federation of Orange County and the Rose Project, support OTI and its mission on campus.

While it seems to be indisputable that the Jewish Federation of Orange County and the Rose Project support the Olive Tree Initiative (OTI),  we wonder what research did the editors of the New University conduct to support the rather bold notion that they might presume to know what the vast majority of the Jewish community supports or doesn’t support.  What is not unreasonable to assume,  is that the vast majority of Jewish community members are not aware of the exposure on OTI trips of students to individuals who represent organizations dedicated to the isolation and destruction of the State of Israel.  One such individual was recently described by Federation CEO Shalom Elcott as a “despicable character”.–OCITF

Here is the Editiorial

The editorial staff of the New University would like to clarify information presented in Nesma Tawil’s article “Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself” on Nov. 30.

As with any article in the Opinion section, the views presented represent the sole opinion of the writer, not the editorial board, the New University or any other organization or person at UCI.

It has been interpreted that the article overemphasizes the perceived conflict or disagreement between the Olive Tree Initiative and the Jewish community in Orange County. However, the article tries to make the distinction that only “a small group of members of the Jewish community” felt this way. It must be made clear that the vast majority of the Jewish community in Orange County, including the Jewish Federation of Orange County and the Rose Project, support OTI and its mission on campus. Minor edits have been made to the article to reflect this support.

The writer also mentioned that Muslim OTI students were not able to pray in a mosque on Eid. This was solely due to unfortunate logistical concerns. It should be mentioned that Muslim students had numerous opportunities to pray in mosques while in the Middle East, including in the Al-Aqsa Mosque for Laylat Al-Qadr. Furthermore, students of all religious backgrounds were given the opportunity to visit sites sacred to their religious traditions.

One paragraph of the article was removed due to the fact that it misrepresented events. Lastly, the sources used by the writer have been checked and have been confirmed as public sources, including blogs and online articles available to the general public.

Disagreement with the content of an article is not justification for extensive post-publication editing. Those that would like to present additional information or challenge points made in any article are encouraged to write a letter to the editor, which should be directed to newuopinion@newuniversity.org. Please include your name, year and major.

Also click : More Concerns Raised About the Olive Tree Initiative

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