Sporting a man bun and skinny jeans, Washington University St. Louis Student Council Vice President Fadel Alkilani has been condemned by the University after he was caught removing 2,977 U.S. flags commemorating the victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack against America.
The flags were placed by the College Republicans Friday night, but on Saturday morning, Alkilani was caught removing them and placing them in blue trash bags.
When confronted, Alkilani said it was “Weird when some random person just walks up and photographs you.”
Alkilani rejected the notion that what he was doing was wrong, vile, and possibly even criminal. The flags were not his to take.
Instead, he blamed his actions on rampant Islamaphobia inspired by the commemoration of the attacks against America by Muslim extremist terrorists. Now, he’s running for cover as the university decides what’s next for him. Calls are being lodged for his dismissal from the school.
“The misinformation that is currently circulating on YAF’s page states that I was “stealing” the flags. This is due to a WashU College Republicans member, taking a video of me collecting flags in plastic bags. However, I had no intention of removing the flags from the Mudd Field area, and my full protest did not have the chance to be actualized,” he said. “My planned protest was to place the bags of flags on Mudd field, along with various statistics explaining the human cost of 9/11 in the past 20 years. On the sides of the bags, some writing may be visible, but the full statement was not outlined at the time of the video.”
He claims he did nothing wrong and his actions are protected under free speech and the University’s code of conduct.
“I did not deface, destroy, damage, nor steal any flags, nor did I interfere with any registered event time. I assert that I did not violate any University Code of Conduct policy, though the conduct process is undergoing. Additionally, I was verbally and physically harassed by numerous WashU students and WUPD officers, whom I plan to report through official channels,” he said.
He doubled down on his hatred for America.
“Any memorial of 9/11 that does not contend with these facts is not only incomplete, but it also amplifies pro-imperialist sentiment and actively disrespects those who have died because of American Invasion,” he said.
University Vice-Chancellor of Marketing and Communications Julie Flory said the University was not happy with Alkilani’s actions.
“We were disappointed to learn about the disruption to the 9/11 display on Mudd Field,” her statement read. “We condemn the interference with the expression of support by the College Republicans for the victims of the national tragedy that took place 20 years ago today.”
“We will never forget the lives that were lost, sacrificed and impacted by the tragic events that took place 20 years ago today. In remembrance of the fallen, members of the WashU College Republicans planted 2,977 flags — one for each life lost in the 9/11 terror attacks — on Mudd Field on the Danforth Campus,” the University said after the flags were placed.
It’s not the first time Alkilani issued an anti-American 9-11 sentiment. When he was 15, he criticized U.S. troops, President Trump and called his fellow classmates “Neo-Nazis”.
“American soldiers, raised in a hateful environment, who have been groomed from a young age to fight for the notion of “freedom in their homeland,” barely adults,” Alkilani wrote on the 2019 anniversary of the attacks. “I’m 15 now, finally old enough to notice these trends as my neighbors plant Trump signs on their lawns. I walk through the high school, and I see shirts and red hats. One of my best friends stands in support of Trump and I get sick to my stomach, realizing that my humanity was a compromise for them. I can’t wait to leave the school day—to leave the town, really, and go to college. “
“But Americans ache for another moment in time when the country was united in hatred,” he described American’s annual 9-11 memorial services.
Now, he’s worried about his safety after his actions have gone viral from coast to coast. His social media accounts have been locked and hidden from public view.
“For those of you who have been reaching out in concern of my safety, I would like to assure you that I am working with the university to ensure that I am safe during this time. This has garnered attention at a scale that I was not expecting, and my regret is that the information circulating consists primarily of a lie,” he said.
Alkilani has offered remorse and no apology for his actions.
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