- Qatar gave $1 billion to elite American universities since 2011, based on Division of Schooling knowledge.
- The Qatar Basis is suing the Texas lawyer basic to stop details about Qatari funding from turning into public.
- Universities are taking cash from Qatar, a nation with a checkered human rights historical past, as college students rally for social justice causes.
The nation of Qatar, a Sharia-law monarchy that has been accused of making an attempt to affect different nations’ governments, gave $1 billion to elite American universities since 2011, in response to Division of Schooling knowledge.
Some universities have refused to debate the place strings are hooked up to that cash. The Qatar Basis, for instance, filed a lawsuit towards the Texas lawyer basic Oct. 12 to cover details about the $225 million Qatar has awarded to Texas A&M College since 2011.
The Qatar Basis employed the politically related powerhouse regulation agency Squire Patton Boggs for the go well with, which was filed in response to a researcher’s public info request relating to the overseas funding.
The most important recipient of Qatar’s instructional funding, Georgetown College, repeatedly ignored requests from The Every day Caller Information Basis for primary details about the funding and whether or not it implicates educational independence.
Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have accused Qatar of meddling in different nations’ inner affairs in addition to funding terrorism. Qatar additionally wields affect via its media group, Al Jazeera.
Prime Overseas Funders of U.S. Universities, 2011-2016 (Supply: Division of Schooling)
For a nation looking for sway over the U.S., Georgetown College can be a very tactical website of affect. Georgetown has acquired almost $333 million from Qatar since 2011 — excess of another U.S. faculty has acquired from any overseas nation.
Georgetown is located within the seat of energy, close to the State Division, and its specialists are steadily cited by teams shaping coverage. The truth is, the Jesuit Catholic college trains most of the United States’ future diplomats at its Walsh Faculty of Overseas Service.
Its web site notes that “At SFS, you can study with former Secretaries of State” and entry “connections to diplomats from just about every country, and of course, the seat of the U.S. government. Our location gives SFS the extraordinary opportunity for us to engage (and sometimes even influence) the debates that lead to real action.”
Because of the Qatari funding, Georgetown and its overseas service program has a whole outpost in Qatar. “Georgetown University in Qatar (GU-Q) is an additional location of Georgetown University, based in Education City in Doha,” its web site says. “The University offers a four year undergraduate program in international affairs leading to the Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service (BSFS) degree.”
The magnitude of liberal-leaning universities’ reliance on the overseas nation, a poster baby for revenue inequality, supplies a stark distinction. As U.S. school college students clamor for college endowments to divest from fossil fuels, the faculties take cash from the oil-rich kingdom. As they rally for social justice causes, Qatar has a checkered human rights document.
Qatar has solely 313,000 residents, and 2.three million foreigners dwelling there, lots of them laborers serving the nation’s elite, in accordance with 2017 knowledge.
“The tragedy of 1.7 million migrant workers trapped in Qatar defines modern day slavery,” the Worldwide Commerce Union Confederation stated in 2015.
Nepalese laborers died at a fee of just about one a day in Qatar, in line with The Guardian.
“We were working on an empty stomach for 24 hours; 12 hours’ work and then no food all night,” one stated. “When I complained, my manager assaulted me, kicked me out of the labor camp I lived in and refused to pay me anything.”
In Washington, professors of Islamic points have engaged in activism. Jonathan A. C. Brown, a convert to Islam and the director of the Alwaleed bin Talal Middle for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown, which Qatar rival Saudi Arabia funds, provided an Islam-based protection of slavery, concubinage and non-consensual intercourse.
“The Prophet of God had slaves. He had slaves. There’s no denying that,” he stated in 2017 at an Worldwide Institute of Islamic Thought speak. “Was he — are you more morally mature than the Prophet of God? No, you’re not. I’ll answer your question for you.” (RELATED: Earlier than Killing Of Journalist, Elite Universities Took $600M From Saudis)
Learning overseas types a bond between U.S. college students and Qatar and helps Qatari nationals study concerning the U.S., in accordance with advertising supplies.
Prime Recipients of Qatar-Affiliated Funding to Universities, 2011-2016 (Supply: Division of Schooling)
In the meantime, school college students have adopted a passion for the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions to Israel motion.
The overwhelming majority of funds from Qatar have been contracts, the Schooling Division knowledge exhibits, requiring Georgetown to do one thing in return for the cash, in contrast to presents.
Georgetown spokesman Matt Hill ignored questions from TheDCNF concerning the strings hooked up to such funds and whether or not they might affect curriculum and wouldn’t present the contract governing them.
The dean of Georgetown’s Qatar campus is Ahmad Dallal, who the Center East Discussion board describes as “a long-time and enthusiastic supporter of the State Department-designated terrorist group Hezbollah. Dallal, who chaired Georgetown’s Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies from 2003 to 2009, is also pro-Hamas, pro-Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, co-author of an Arabic textbook whose maps omit Israel, and signatory of a letter warning that Israel would engage in ‘ethnic cleansing’ at the start of the Iraq war.”
The Zachor Authorized Institute, which opposes the motion to sanction and boycott Israel, submitted a Freedom of Information request in Might to Texas A&M (TAMU), a state college, for “a summary of all amounts of funding or donations received” from Qatar and an extended listing of proxies.
The workplace of state Lawyer Common Ken Paxton dominated “the university must withhold the donors’ identifying information … the university must release the remaining information.”
A lot of the cash to TAMU have been contracts, not donations.
The Qatar Basis’s high-powered legal professionals intervened, arguing the related portion of the lawyer basic’s ruling “requiring release of all remaining information other than donor identity is incorrect and without force or effect.”
That is an motion to stop disclosure of confidential monetary info in regards to the relationship between QF and Texas A&M College … QF operates packages devoted to schooling, science, and group improvement. It’s chargeable for funding a lot of the event in Schooling Metropolis, a hub for greater schooling outdoors Doha. … Along with TAMU, Carnegie Mellon, Cornell, Georgetown, Northwestern, and Virginia Commonwealth College have all established campuses in Schooling Metropolis.
The Lawyer Basic concluded that TAMU might withhold info figuring out ‘donors’ underneath part 552.1235. However the Lawyer Common said that TAMU can be required to launch all remaining info requested, which would come with info associated to funds made by QF to TAMU pursuant to a contract. In so doing, the Lawyer Basic implicitly dominated that these funds weren’t ‘donations,’ and subsequently not exempt from disclosure beneath the PIA … The knowledge associated to those grants and donations can also be confidential business info and constitutes a commerce secret.
The Qatar Basis’s basic counsel is Michael Mitchell, a former vice chairman of Ohio State College.
Marc Greendorfer, an lawyer for the Zachor Authorized Institute, responded to the Texas lawyer common Nov. eight: “One of the Qatari entities that was the subject of our original request has taken the extraordinary step of taking the Texas Attorney General to court to suppress the information that we requested. Now, with the most recent attempt by TAMU to prevent public disclosure of information as to how Qatari entities are involved with a Texas public university, the intrigue grows, and we have to wonder what it is they are trying to keep from the public.”
TAMU and the Qatar Basis didn’t return requests for remark.
The college operations by Qatar are only one prong in a large public relations and affect push that features tens of millions to lobbyists and public relations companies within the U.S.
It’s also not the one involvement of Squire Patton Boggs with Center Japanese nations. The identical regulation agency additionally has a $100,000-a-month contract with Qatar’s rival Saudi Arabia for the dominion to retain former Senate Majority Chief Trent Lott and former Democratic Louisiana Sen. John Breaux.
In response to Overseas Agent Registration Act disclosures, it labored immediately with Saud al-Qahtani, the identical aide who allegedly organized the killing of a Washington Submit columnist.
Qatar Basis Texas A&M FOIA (PDF)
Qatar Basis Texas A&M FOIA (Textual content)
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