Remember all of the groups that were going to be protesting SecDef Gates’ commencement speech next week? Well, strike one from the list — the Muslim Student Association. In a letter to the UW Daily, MSA senior advisor Zakariya Dehlawi, wrote:

It recently printed in Rachel Solomon’s article, “Groups plan to protest Gates as commencement speaker,” that the Muslim Students Association (MSA) at the UW was going to protest the commencement speaker, Robert Gates. This is patently not true.

The MSA is purely a religious organization, and we strive to be apolitical. Our goals are to educate the UW community about Islam and provide for our diverse membership. Endorsing political rallies is not in our mandate.

I understand this is a student newspaper, but accurate reporting is appreciated. I request that The Daily print a retraction because this reckless coverage has negatively affected our reputation.

In looking at the groups that were planning on protesting (International Socialist Organization, Democracy Insurgent, Bail Out the People — Not the Banks!, Socialist Alternative, World Can’t Wait, the Anti-War Collective), I was actually wondering why the MSA was among them. I’m glad Mr. Dehlawi was able to clarify his group’s position, and I wanted pass along his letter to you.


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