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Barrett Leaving UW

ABC / WKOW | November 14, 2006

Controversial instructor Kevin Barrett told 27 News he is not returning to teach at UW-Madison in the spring semester.

Barrett had been paid $8,000 to teach a one semester, introduction to Islam course, which is not being offered next January.

"The semester by semester lecturing jobs are fairly hard to come by," Barrett said.

"There was no appropriate course to apply for."

Barrett's decision to forego applying for a 2007 UW-Madison lecturing position was first reported by the campus newspaper The Badger Herald.

Barrett's advocacy of the theory the Bush administration was behind controlled demolitions of the World Trade Center's twin towers and other 9/11 destruction brought national headlines, criticism from Governor Jim Doyle and Republican challenger Mark Green, and led UW-Madison's Provost to restrict Barrett's teaching of the subject to two class sessions.

Barrett critic Representative Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) told 27 News Barrett was likely forced out by a University administration uncomfortable with the attention Barrett's unconventional views brought to the school.

"Right now at the semester break, that is a convenient time to get rid of the guy," Nass told 27 News.

"I think that is what they were waiting for, behind the scenes. That's my gut feeling."

UW-Madison spokesman Dennis Chaptman told 27 News he was unaware of any effort to discourage Barrett from applying for another teaching job.

Barrett said there was university support for his return.

"I've talked to two people with some degree of hiring authority in two different departments at the UW and both of them have encouraged me to apply again."

Barrett said he plans to devote full time effort this spring advocating for the theory the 9/11 destruction was orchestrated to create a rationale for widespread, Mideast war.

Barrett said an affiliation of academics, religious figures and others who have advocated this theory nationally will soon become a non profit organization.

Barrett said his time will be consumed by fund raising and making appearances on college campuses and other places around the country.

Barrett told 27 News classrooms are likely to be more friendly to instructors with unconventional views, now that the pro-Iraq war, Reublican majority in Congress was voted out.

"I think that was a stern rebuke to facism from the American electorate," Barrett said.

Barrett also believed Doyle's re-election was helpful to academic freedom, in a lesser-of-evils fashion.

"I'm somewhat pleased the saner of two lunatics won, the two major party lunatics."

Barrett said third party and independent candidates cited Barrett's insistence the mainstream version of 9/11 events be challenged.

In class, Barrett used essays from authors with similar views to him to present the theory of a Bush administration orchestration of the 9/11 event.

One of the class' orginal, required textbooks included an essay from Barrett himself, in which Barrett compared Bush's actions to those of Adolf Hitler.

"(9/11) was intended to set the American empire in stone for at least a hundred years, perhaps even to found a new, imperial 1000-year Reich like the ones the Nazis dreamed of," Barrett wrote in "9/11 and American Empire: Muslims, Jews and Christians Speak Out."

"The key factor is that he's not able to sunstantiate what he teaches in the classroom on those issues," Nass told 27 News.

Barrett received a doctorate in African languages and literature, with a minor in folklore, from UW-Madison in 2004.

Barrett predicted his group's advocacy and the changed political environment will inspire others to rewrite 9/11 history.

"I think more and more academics will be finding their courage."

 

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