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Professors to CA Controller: State Money Should Not Be Used For Personal Political Agendas And Meetings with Terrorists


Contact: Nicole Rosen


Santa Cruz, CA, June 26, 2014 – Shocked that San Francisco State University is defending professor Rabab Abdulhadi and her “Palestine solidarity tour” as “research,” a number of professors from the University of California at San Diego have addressed their concerns to California State Controller John Chiang. Below is the letter the professors sent concerning the potential misuse of $7,000 of US taxpayer money on Professor Abdulhadi’s trip that involved meeting with two terrorists:

Date: June 25, 2014 10:44:08 AM PDT
To: “”
Cc: “” “” “” “”

Subject: State Money Should not Be Used for Personal Political Agendas and Meetings with Terrorists

Dear Mr. Chiang,

If the allegations made by AMCHA, Simon Wiesenthal Center and six other organizations about SFSU Professor Rabab Abdulhadi’s recent trip to the Middle East, which she herself described as a “political solidarity tour” are accurate, then SFSU President Wong’s justification of this abuse of California taxpayers’ money as legitimate “research” is outrageous and so broadens the term “research” as to make it meaningless. If President Wong’s interpretation of Professor Abdulhadi’s trip is allowed to stand then there will be no activity, regardless of how blatantly political, that Professors will not be able to engage in using public funds, under the guise of “academic freedom” and “research.” We, the undersigned, urge you to bring some clear-minded reasoning to this issue and send a message that there, indeed, are some activities that are clearly political and, while perfectly appropriate for academics to engage in as private citizens, are not appropriate uses of public educational funds.


David Feifel, MD, PhD
Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Neurosciences Program
University of California, San Diego

Nora Laiken, PhD
Assistant Dean for Educational Support Services
Lecturer in Medicine and Pharmacology
UCSD School of Medicine

Pamela Cosman, PhD
Professor and Vice Chair, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Associate Dean for Students, Jacobs School of Engineering
University of California, San Diego

Shlomo Dubnov, PhD
Professor, Department of Music
University of California, San Diego

Sonia Ancoli-Israel, PhD
Professor Emeritus
University of California, San Diego

Neal R. Swerdlow, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Psychiatry
Vice Chair, Education & Training
UCSD School of Medicine

Ami Berkowitz, Ph.D.
Research Professor
Physics Dept., UCSD

Guershon Harel, PhD
Professor, Department of mathematics

Alex Groisman, PhD
Associate Professor of Physics,

Sidney Zisook, MD
UCSD School of Medicine

Brian Keating, PhD
Associate Professor of Physics
University of California, San Diego

Ruth Covell, MD
Clinical Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine,


AMCHA Initiative is a non-profit organization dedicated to investigating, documenting, educating about, and combating anti-Semitism at institutions of higher education in America. AMCHA Initiative’s efforts are bolstered by a network of more than 5,000 members and supporters of the Jewish community — including university alumni, parents and grandparents, rabbis, religious school principals and synagogue members — who have joined together to speak in one voice to ensure the safety and well-being of Jewish students on college and university campuses across the country.



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