The University of Sydney, Australia, has fired a controversial senior lecturer after he showed his students material featuring the Nazi swastika imposed over the flag of Israel, The Algemeiner reported on Thursday.
Tim Anderson, who taught economics and international politics at the University of Sydney for two decades, was first suspended in December 2018 after showing the lecture slide in a “Human Rights in Development” course.
Anderson, a life-long radical and virulent hater of Jews, was blasted by university officials for his numerous trips to Syria and North Korea, where he expressed support for the regimes of Syrian President Bashar Assad and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The lecturer charged that the regimes had been the target of “false flag” attacks by Western governments.
In August, Anderson was placed under official investigation after he defended a former colleague for wearing a badge proclaiming “death to Israel.” An extremist all his life, Anderson was convicted in 1990 over the 1978 Sydney Hilton Hotel bombing. He was acquitted on appeal the following year.
A spokeswoman for the university confirmed the termination of Anderson’s employment and said the lecturer had engaged in “serious misconduct.” The spokeswoman added that Anderson had published on social media and in lecture slides “material which included the Nazi swastika over the Israeli flag,” found to be “disrespectful and offensive, and contrary to the university’s behavioral expectations and requirements for all staff.”
In a Facebook post, Anderson defended his actions. “This move is the culmination of a series of failed attempts by management to restrict my public comments,” the lecturer said after his suspension was first put into effect. “I have always rejected such censorship.”
Acting vice chancellor of the University of Sydney, Professor Stephen Garton, fired back at Anderson, saying “the university has, since its inception, supported and encouraged its staff to engage in public debate, and it has always accepted that those views might be controversial.”
He continued: “Our academic staff can and often do disagree with one another publicly. In fact, the process of doing so is part of the academic process.
“The university has and will continue to defend academic staff to express unpopular views as part of their teaching and research, so long as they fulfill their obligations to engage in that debate in a civil manner.”