Thursday, 29 January 2009
Shame on the Cambridge University management!
The Cambridge University occupation in solidarity with Gaza have been having a tough time of it, with their university administration using such devious and intimidatory tactics as photographing occupants and recording their details (multiple times!), throwing away occupants' food supplies, stop-and-searches of staff and students to ensure that no food gets through (on "health and safety" grounds!), issuing legal threats, giving impossible time-frames for negotiations, preventing students from joining the protests and telling students that they would not be allowed to re-enter the occupation after they had already left. Yesterday visiting speaker Craig Murray was prevented from entering the building and had to address occupants and gathered crowds from within a ring of university officials acting like a police kettle. Cambridge students have explicitly stated their commitment to a peaceful occupation and to the non-disruption of their fellow students from the outset. Many staff and students and even politicians have expressed their outrage and support. The occupation says "Cambridge University claims to be stand for values of freedom of expression, and these worrying actions prove this claim false and set a dangerous precedent for future student activists." This kind of authoritarian harassment and siege from the University of Cambridge is unacceptable, hypocritical, disruptive to other students, and generally does them huge discredit. Please use the template on the right hand side of this page to send a letter of disgust (or write your own) to the vice-chancellor at firstname.lastname@example.org.