Oxford's Islamic professor Tariq Ramadan has been confronted with accusations of rape recently and students at the Oxford Middle East Centre are angry at the University’s slow response, accusing authorities of acting “as if nothing had happened.”
Ramadan, the grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood and a darling of the European leftist elite who enjoys a reputation as a reformer of Islam, is being investigated by French authorities over two allegations of rape, sexual assault, violence, and harassment which surfaced a couple of weeks ago. He denies everything and calls the allegations a “campaign of lies” and "slander." Robert Spencer, Director of the Freedom Center's Jihad Watch, calls Ramadan "anything but a reformer, and is merely a skilled practitioner of deception."
According to the weekly student newspaper Cherwell, in response to requests from students, senior faculty figures held a meeting Tuesday to address their concerns. Several students expressed anger at the “lack of communication” from the University, claiming they became aware of the allegations only by “word of mouth.”
Eugene Rogan, Director of the Middle East Centre, repeatedly apologized to students for taking ten days to respond to the allegations, blaming the delay on the fact that the controversy was happening in another country with a different legal system.
Then Rogan dropped this revealing insight on the students: “It’s not just about sexual violence. For some students it’s just another way for Europeans to gang up against a prominent Muslim intellectual. We must protect Muslim students who believe and trust in him, and protect that trust.”
In other words, because Ramadan is Muslim, it's very likely that these charges of rape are being falsely brought by European Islamophobes and bigots trying to bring down a prominent Muslim. And Muslims must be protected at all costs.
Rogan went on to warn the students use caution discussing the meeting. “We can’t tell you what you should say. But I encourage everyone to use their moral judgment about how they voice their concerns – not to victimize the women who’ve made the allegations or the men who’ve been accused of things they’ve not yet had the chance to defend themselves against.”
One postgrad said: “There should have been a more open and frank discussion with female students about how to make them feel safer,” she said. “Women won’t come forward here and say how they feel.”
A number of students expressed concern about Ramadan continuing to teach. One claimed that immediately following the first allegation, Ramadan was seen “walking and laughing in the hall as if nothing had happened.”
A Middle East student told Cherwell,
“Frankly, I’m shocked by how badly the University has dealt with this incident. While Professor Ramadan must be assumed innocent until proven guilty, this does not excuse the absolute lack of communication between the Middle East Centre and affected students. This story broke two weeks ago. At very least, we should have received an email [from the faculty]. Also disappointing is how Professor Ramadan was allowed to teach MPhil students as usual last week, despite these serious allegations having been made.”
The faculty initially said they intended for Ramadan to continue to both tutor and supervise on his return to Oxford from Qatar, but today the school announced that the professor will be taking a leave of absence while the investigation into the charges proceeds, to make sure Ramadan isn't simply being ganged up on by European supremacists.