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?My reasons for resigning my position at the University of Notre Dame’

 It is with regret that I submitted to the University of Notre Dame my letter of resignation on December 13th, 2004 from both my positions as Professor of Islamic Studies in the Classics Department and as the Henry R. Luce Professor of Religion, Conflict and Peace Building.

After being granted a work visa by the United States government on May 5th, 2004, it was suddenly and without explanation revoked on July 28th under the legal guise of the U.S. Patriot Act.  There was worldwide condemnation of this decision.

The U.S. Administration, notably Secretary of State, Colin Powell, confirmed that my case would be re-evaluated and I was asked to resubmit a new work visa application (H1), which I did on October 4th 2004. 

I was told that a decision would be imminent so my family and I decided that we would wait until December to decide on a course of action. Two months have since passed and I have not received any information, additional responses or any clear indication that a decision is forthcoming from the U.S. government.  

The last contact between the University of Notre Dame and the State Department revealed, to the contrary, that no decision would be made in the near future.

In effect, my case has simply been ignored. 

For my family and myself, waiting longer was not possible.  The uncertainty, the psychological tension, as well as the schooling for my children and the fact that all our personal belongings were in South Bend, Indiana, made it absolutely crucial to make this very difficult and heart wrenching decision.    

The faculty of the University of Notre Dame, who wholly supported me during this difficult period, has expressed their sadness and regrets on hearing of my resignation.   They had always expressed their bewilderment at the U.S. Administration’s utter silence and attitude towards this issue.

If there existed any questionable elements in my file during these last 5 months, they would have surely been produced today to demonstrate any lack of transparency on my part. 

Silence remains and proof is lacking. 

I know that there is nothing in my file that would justify this treatment.  It is a classic case of infringement on academic freedom.  The revocation of my work visa remains an inexplicable and unjust decision.  

Regardless of the decision I have taken today, I am still waiting for the U.S. Administration to reveal the results of their investigation so that my name can be cleared of all the untrue and humiliating accusations made against me during these last few months

I would like to thank the University of Notre Dame for their courage and determination to unequivocally defend the principal of academic freedom of expression and who, till the end, refused to be swayed by prejudgments, mistruths and suspicions.  

I would also like to thank the dozens of universities and social organizations, as well as all the intellectuals, ordinary people and journalists who demanded that academic freedom be upheld, even if they didn’t always agree with my ideas.   They represent the dignity of the United States.  It is they who are promoting pluralism and democratic debate.  The U.S. Administration, on the other hand, is unfortunately demonstrating each day signs of a rapid descent into a closed and worrisome unilaterism.  

In the United States, I had wished to participate in the urgent and pressing debates within the world of Islam and Muslims. An unjust decision does not bar me from continuing this imperative struggle for dialogue and understanding between women and men and between religions and cultures.

 

 

21 commentaires - “?My reasons for resigning my position at the University of Notre Dame’”

  1. How embarrassing for us Americans, and how typical of this Administration. Let me assure you, Professor Ramadan, that the actions of George W. Bush and Company do not reflect the sentiments of all Americans.

    1. It was very disappointing and sad news to hear that you resigned from the faculty position at University of Notre Dame. Please accept our support and sympathy. Although this is a very stressful situation for you and your family, we are confident and convinced that your voice will get stronger than before and strengthen your message. We had so much hope that you will be the one who could carry the urgent dialogue needed for our struggle in America. We are in need of strong voices like yours to defend the universality of our values. We recognized that it is our responsibility too as individuals to stand up and get involved but your leadership, your charisma, and your wisdom will bring us closer together and will make us stronger to face the challenges confronting us.
      We need more clarity on why such unfair decisions are taken more often, towards us. We need to condemn the unfairness of such an undemocratic decision. By letting this happen, we are letting ‘them” achieve their goals: that is preventing any American-Muslim group have a voice in America. By accepting quietly such unfair decisions, we are letting them continue on their anti-Muslim propaganda, who ever they are. We all know and have a pretty good idea of who “they” are. It is more obvious that these anti-Muslim groups (these warlords and their fellow conspirators) are trying by all means to prevent people like you from speaking out: You are one of the very few, who can defend rationally and articulately the peaceful and universal values of Islam, as well as the idea of pluralism, diversity and equality. You represent their fear and anxieties.
      I propose that we all join our efforts in appealing such decision. You have decided to resign now but your message will cross the ocean and they will hear it even if they try to hide it. Your humanism, your peaceful convictions will prevail.

      Sincerely yours KS

    2. You were wrong to dialogue with the Western think tanks, because they will not listen to you, they are inherently opposed to Muslims, it is a promise in the Quran, that they will never be pleased with you until you leave your faith.

      The only ones who will listen are the sincere ones, which are a small minority, these are mainly the lower class elements of society.

      I feel your writings are too naieve and too sympathetic with the non believers, this has no place in contemporary islamic thought because it is a defeatist mentality which only ceases to ignore the barbarity of Foreign policies which make the lives of muslims, tales of gruesome sadistic torture.

    3. Dear writer
      Truth will prevail. It may take a long time for you to see it, but the truth will prevail. Never mind if Dr Tariq Ramadan’s writings are naive or whatever you said it was, but the important thing is if there is justice in his revocation by the US administration as well as truth in Islam. In that, you can do more reading and exercise on your intellect, rather than condemning. Thank you.

    4. How can it ever be wrong to try to dialogue with someone, even your mortal enemy? Am I not worthy of your dialogue because I am a Non-Believer, whatever hollow cliche that may be? Can you not see that your dividing the world into black and white, Believers and Non-Believers, is true naivety and potentially the way to subvert/pervert the Message?

      love and peace to us all

    5. William Penn, a Quaker and founder of the colony which became the state of Pennsylvania, wrote in 1693, ” The humble, meek, merciful, just, pious, and devout souls are everywhere of one religion; and when death has taken off the mask they will know one another, though the divers liveries they wear here makes them strangers.”
      Maybe Friend, you and I shall meet in the next life and you will learn not to be so prejudicial, for Muslims and Christians are equally the children of God and to condemn Western motives differs little from the racial rantings of anti-Islamists.

    6. Dear Tariq Ramadan
      I think you write sanely and interestingly. I am not a Muslim nor do I feel any sense of faith in God but I respect people who do have a sincere sense of divine presence. I am pleased there are Muslims like you out there. To those who say that the West hates Islam that is as untrue as it is to say that Islam hates the West or that there is any monolithic islam or west anyway. Continue thinking and writing, for a better world for everyone.

    7. it is a promise in the Quran, that they will never be pleased with you until you leave your faith.

      this may be a little out of context here. i feel this promise refers to Muslims wanting to follow the ways of the west blindly and to seek their pleasure. i amy be wrong. there is another verse in Quran which talks about arguing with them in ways that are beautiful. so debates and dialogues with western think tanks, there are nothing wrong with this, i feel.

    8. They will not listen, will not share or dignify your message until you join their warlike ideas. Be patient, and truth will prevail. Peace to you and your family.

    9. Dear Tariq,

      Democracy,Freedom and other beautiful concepts sing more than they speak all over this world without a single country exception.But sometimes we cannot help it being naively caught again and again in this conceptual mirage.I have gone through it before you in north america,in the arab world…guys like us should take refuge with the monks in himalaya where we might find peace away from hypocrisy.Good Luck.

  2. Humane ideas speak to the entirety of humanity, not just the ethnic or spiritual community in which they originated.

    Missionary activities spread the ideas of Christian love and humility with amazing success — throughout Latin America with the assistance of military support, thoughout Russia without it.

    Just so Tariq Ramadan disseminates the ideas of the missionary Islamic faith, beyond the bounds of the Arabic culture which gave it birth.

    But how interesting! His thought and his activities, and the response of the United States officialdom to them, show to what extent the ideas of freedom of thought and speech, supposedly those signpost products of the European Enlightenment of the eighteenth century, have in our days been repudiated in their own homeland while at the same time have spread throughout the world to become the common heritage of all peoples.

  3. Brother Tariq, your will and passion for the great religion that is Islam can only help it grow. Your ability to communicate, regardless of whether it be written word or verbal cannot be counteracted as the masses await your visions.

  4. Brother Tariq,

    I was at the “Does God Exist” seminar in Melbourne and your talk was very inspirational.
    May Allah be pleased with your work.

    Jabir

  5. I have had the pleasure and blessing of hearing you at one of your visits to Virginia. As an American Mulsim who has been brought up between Egyptian traditions, western culture, and islamic Faith, you are the most inspirational, motivational, and educated scholar that I have related to and felt a personal connection with. The sound foundation of your intellectual insights provide a comforting credibility with a refreshing dose of Islamic non-biased focus on The Message. You have empowered my acceptance of myself as a majority, proud, conscious and willing American Muslim.
    Truth crosses all oceans, and the power of the Word of Truth will always prevail.
    Please continue to reach out to us (the American Muslims, especially the youth and immigrants), as your guidance is a sorely needed.

    I have not met enough people that are familiar with the basis of your message – I will do what I can. I believe the Internet is extremely effective for now, and I personally appreciate your dedication and persistence. As a leader, every effort you make can have an exponential effect on the Muslim world – may Allah empower you to further Mulim’s state of being and bless you with the sakeena and happiness in every step of the way.

  6. Assalamu alaykum brother Tariq,

    In Morocco I had the honor of attending several lectures that you gave, and in Paris my sister was honored of the same, and all around the world people from different faiths respect and look forward to the valuable information your views offer.

    Books written by you, along with Cds are proudly standing in the shelves in my house here in North Carolina where i moved to go on with my husband in studies and persuie the path of knowledge, “le cheminement”…

    We are young, people like us need you in the United states. Seeds grow to plants, but they grow best with the right watering, and we need the right teaching.

    My husband’s a young American convert to Islam with a slight palestinian background, and i am Moroccan with french education. we are looking for a wisdom like yours.

    I was asked to work for the operations center of a very large bank here in the U.S because of certain skills, and i quit because the whole work was based on the Patriot Act disclosure of personal information of millions of people. I stayed for a while to learn and get the training of the Patriot Act so i can know and tell everyone.

    Brother, you are a victim like tens of brothers and sisters. It is not you, it is the good you can do. The good being relative to politics, and seen bad in this case.

    My husband and i would have moved to the state and university you would be living and teaching in just so we can learn.

    It is a sad opportunity we are missing.

  7. Dear Tariq,

    Assalam-o-laikum wa rahmathullahi wa barkatahu.

    It is the People of Islamic knowledge like You who are the most vulnerable.

    When monster, aggressor and tyrannical United States Government motivated appointment in US University was initially offered to you, you should have remained humble and modest and said ” No Thanks! I am happy with what I have in Notredame”.
    Instead You and everyone around you jumped with joy as if you have been chosen ones. It is obvious today to even a child that US and its foreign policy is agressive, tyrannical, corrupt and full of sins.

    Is there no difference between being a chosen ones of Allah or chosen ones of Iblis?

    You being a man of knowledge should have surely known that there is a motive in US State department behind this and should have politely refused to accept US position.

    Why did you decide to leave your people behind and move to United States and allow yourself to be kept under watch of US state department, leaving behind the security in which you and your relatives
    would have further prospered.

    Look how the Accursed one tempts you to leave the position of security so that when you are further vulnerable He can attack.

    It is sad you fell for the trap of the Accursed and Rejected one and left your job and responsibility in Notredame.

    All the Mumins know these traps. Yet we forget, for we get easily decieved by machinations of Iblis behind Axis of Evil.

    May Allah give you back your job and responsibility.Ameen.

  8. salaam,

    would you condiser a post in Canada? the Lakani institute has been funding Islamic studies in York University in Toronto. Europe has homed your knowledge, as has America, please, we would love to have you in the great North. I know this may be a pointless attempt, but it’s worth a shot.

    salaam.

  9. I fear that it will only be possible to cure the ill that afflicts the USA by standing outside and being counted. The danger of participating in the fraud, for whatever noble reasons, is that the participant will become a fraudster.

  10. We do not know what is good for us. I believe that it is better for you not to accept a position in the U.S. unless you are prepared to be under constant scrutiny and pressured to compromise your faith.

    1. I don’t think, and am sure about it too, that Tariq Ramadan is someone who will compromise his Faith. However he will fight off any adversity, with all his kindliness, to voice out his opinion and Faith. I believe that Tariq Ramadan should be given a U.S visa so that he can continue his job in the University, and at the same time try to reason those who are against him…

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