Australian academic Tim Anderson has been suspended from the University of Sydney on cheap and completely baseless pretexts. The real reason behind this reactionary witch-hunt is his principled anti-imperialist stance, which has infuriated -again and again- the Liberal-National government and the corporate media. Opposing one’s ruling class in matters of war and peace is a high-level political struggle, and it comes with cost and risk. The Australian bourgeoisie knows this well, so it has repeatedly witch-hunted Dr. Anderson, with national media and government ministers calling for him to be silenced, disciplined or fired from the university.
The Communist Revolutionary Action strongly condemns this act of political censorship. We are confident that Tim will prevail; after all, it seems that he has developed a habit of doing so.
We hereby reprint his statement:
«Yesterday University of Sydney Provost Stephen Garton suspended me from my position as a senior lecturer and banned me from entering the university. I have worked as an academic at this University for more than 20 years and am appealing the decision to a Review Committee.
This move is the culmination of a series of failed attempts by management to restrict my public comments. I have always rejected such censorship. The latest complaint concerns my advisory analysis of the Israeli attacks on Gaza. Examine the graphic below and decide for yourself whether or how this infographic might be ‘offensive’.
These complaints, over the last 18 months, have been petty and absurd. In my view they represent an unusually aggressive regime of political censorship, in which no decent university should be involved.
Most of the management complaints have to do with my criticisms of war propaganda against Syria, Iraq and Palestine. I don’t accept such censorship.
Stephen Garton has ignored the ‘intellectual freedom’ rule of the university, which states that academic staff are entitled to ‘express unpopular or controversial views, provided that in doing so staff must not engage in harassment, vilification or intimidation’. I will point this out to the Review Committee.
I have told Provost Garton that I don’t abuse or engage in gratuitous criticism, but I do criticise dishonest propaganda harshly, when justified. I have rejected his attempts at political censorship as unprincipled.
Dr Tim Anderson»