I have been a member of NAFSA since 2005, and was always keen on attending its conferences. I find them important and interesting, and also useful as we get to gain more networks and possibly more knowledge. This year I gathered enough funds that will cover my ticket and hotel, and the conference fee, but just before I filled the form, i looked through the agenda and noticed that the keynote speaker is Salman Rushdi, so I decided not to join and I certainly hope that others will follow suit as having him is against the philosophy of NAFSA.

Now I am not an Islamic activist, nor am I against having one’s own opinion on certain religions. My argument here is that Education insists on scientific research evidences, and scientific findings, and at all the universities in the world, all of us have to show that our opinions are based on real facts (and real research methodologies), whether these come from surveys, questionnaires or checking historic data and trends. The book that was slammed by most Muslims “satanic verses” is not based on any of the above, plus it insulted the 2 billion Muslims in the world because it comprised of cynical, false information about the most influential person on earth, PBUH prophet Mohammed. The fact the he is the most influential is not according to us the Muslims, because we are always branded as chauvinists, discriminative and extremists; its according to Mr M. H. Hart who wrote a book in 1978 about the ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History, this book was reprinted in 1992 with revisions. It is a ranking of the 100 people who, according to Hart, most influenced human history. Mr Hart did not come to this conclusion on the basis of what we the Muslims had written, but on the basis of “research” into historic data.

If I am NAFSA which is {an Association of International Educators, NAFSA is an association of individuals worldwide advancing international education and exchange and global workforce development. NAFSA serves international educators and their institutions and organizations by establishing principles of good practice, providing training and professional development opportunities, providing networking opportunities, and advocating for international education}, then I would expect NAFSA to practice its mission statement and not to have someone who is totally against these principles and one who writes misleading and useless information in the name of “freedom of speech”, to be its key note speaker. I would like a response from NAFSA about this fact, and i would like NAFSA and its members to convince me that having him at the conference is correct and its not against the main principles of “education”.

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