Responding to the perfectly reasonable allegation that the wild-eyed radicals who shut down Donald Trump’s rally in Chicago were fascists, lefty comedian Sarah Silverman made what I’m sure she thought was a devastating argument:
PLEASE tell me which times throughout history protests from college campuses got it wrong. List them for me https://t.co/qq0MaIcyj4
— Sarah Silverman (@SarahKSilverman) March 12, 2016
Here at Breitbart Tech, we’ve become experts on campus radicalism. Students collectively lose their minds and retreat to therapy sessions whenever our editor shows up. So for Sarah Silverman’s benefit, it’s time for a history lesson in student radicalism.
In Pashto, the word Taliban literally means “students.” These campus crusaders take rocket-propelled grenade launchers on their student demos, possibly chanting “Who’s caves? Our caves!” as they protest against The Man. Or now, I suppose, The Drone. If the Taliban had Tumblr, they’d probably be complaining about that harlot ISIS stealing the spotlight.
The Taliban were a real student movement, originating from religious schools on the Afghan-Pakistan border. Mullah Omar is said to have started the movement with approximately 50 students from his hometown of Kandahar in Pakistan. Today, they’re busy putting women in burkas, shooting schoolgirls, destroying ancient Buddha statues, and killing gays, all actions that could charitably be described as setting up Koranic safe spaces. We aren’t sure what Sarah’s criteria are, but we’re pretty sure that constitutes “getting it wrong.”
THE RED GUARDS
It’s not just religious ideologues who do terrifying student fundamentalism. Mao’s Red Guards, who spend decades terrorising and brutalising the Chairman’s political opponents, were also a student movement. Students from the Tsinghua University Middle School and Peking University initially began the movement to support Mao and denounce the “intellectual elitism” of college administrations.
They were quickly embraced by Mao himself, who broadcast their manifesto on national radio channels, leading to the rapid emergence of new student groups across the country. Within a few months, Mao had an army of young, frothing radicals which he would use to purge his enemies during the bloody Cultural Revolution, which is estimated to have claimed over 400,000 lives. Red guards were also known to engage in “struggle sessions,” in which groups of students would mob a political target to verbally shame and intimidate them in public. During the college protests last year, students at Yale used precisely the same Maoist tactic.
Just as Mao’s student enforcers didn’t go anywhere without their Little Red Book, coddled millennial protesters are rarely seen without their Macbooks. Of course, they only use them to visit Mao-approved websites.
As well as purging, Red Guards were tasked with destroying symbols of old Chinese culture such as the Cemetery of Confucius. The destruction of old historical monuments is common among radical movements, who seek to erase the “mistakes” of the past, reset society to “Year Zero,” and start again from the bottom up, based on strict ideological precepts. The Islamic State and the Taliben are also fond of tearing down historical monuments — and so are western students, who currently have their sights set on statues of Cecil Rhodes and Queen Victoria.
THE BA’ATH PARTY
However much lefties wish he wasn’t deposed, Saddam Hussein was not a nice chap. His regime was marked by assassinations, political repression, and mass murder. His victims included over 150,000 Kurdish rebels who were bombarded with chemical weapons following the First Gulf War. But did you know that without students, Hussein couldn’t have come to power?
Hussein’s regime was the result of the rise of Ba’ath pan-Arabism. The breeding ground for this revolutionary ideology of socialism and Arab nationalism was, you guessed it, university campuses. Hussein joined his first Ba’ath party cell when he was attending an Iraqi law school. From there, he would rise through the ranks of the Ba’ath party, ultimately coming to power in a bloodless coup in 1968. The rest of his regime – the product of a student movement – would not be so bloodless.
Other dictators who rode the wave of Ba’ath radicalism to power included Muammar Gadaffi and Hafez Al-Assad. Their secular tyrannies may have been better than that of Islamists who followed in their wake, but not by much. Thanks students!
THE ANTI-WAR MOVEMENT
It will no doubt make student activists splutter with rage to see an attack on the sacred anti-war movement, so this section will be enjoyable to write, not least because of the parallels with today’s student activists. A lot of college aged men saw the anti-war movement as a groovy way to meet chicks and seem ‘involved’. Sort of like how male feminists on campus dream of meeting their dreamgirl with fake blood spread on her face at a protest.
After America’s withdrawal from Vietnam, the communist regime embarked on a disastrous programme of economic collectivisation and political repression. Between 100,000 and 200,000 Vietnamese were estimated to have been executed by the regime. Over 150,000 more died in communist “re-education camps,” while tens of thousands died labouring in the regime’s “New Economic Zones.”
All of this would have been averted, had the United States won the war. Which they were about to, until students made it politically impossible to keep troops in the country. The fabled Tet Offensive, which was perceived by students as a major defeat for the U.S, was in fact a major defeat for the Vietcong, who lost more than double the number they killed and failed to achieve their strategic objective of sparking a communist uprising in the south.
Nevertheless, scenes of American forces under siege on TV provided fresh energy to the student antiwar movement, who pressured the U.S government to withdraw. They did. Vietnam was the victim
THE LITTLE ROCK PROTESTS
I’m not sure what Sarah Silverman will make of this image of students protesting the first black attendees of Little Rock high school in Arkansas, but given that in her words, students are never wrong, I assume they’ll have her full support.
Well, that was almost too easy. Perhaps Sarah would like another 5?