CICCIO: Sacramento State cut a deal with terrorism-loving occupiers. CBS celebrated it as 'dialogue'.

As university leaders surrendered, they had many members of the American news media to assist them with messaging.

Weeks ago, the nation watched as terrorist-endorsed antagonists seized control of America’s most elite university campuses. While schools in Florida and Texas nipped their occupations in the bud, other schools chose to negotiate with those terrorist wannabes, begging them to return power back to administration.

Billed as ‘peaceful protest’ against the plight of the Palestinian people, students and outside agitators took campuses hostage, demanding that universities cut all financial ties to the state of Israel, slash partnership programs with Israeli universities, and make public statements condemning the Jewish state. 

Classes were canceled. Graduations were canceled. At many universities, administrations effectively relinquished complete control to their angry mobs. But luckily, as university leaders surrendered, they had many members of the American news media to assist them with messaging.

In one segment covering the chaos, CBS News blamed unrest in the Middle East for “stoking unrest on college campuses,” but celebrated California State University, Sacramento as a “stand out” example. The news package praised University President J. Luke Wood who supposedly “oversaw a peaceful end” to its campus occupation.

“The encampment here came down, not with violence, but with dialogue,” CBS’ Elise Preston ‘reported.’

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The segment then cuts to Wood, who explains that “what a lot of students are really looking for” is “to take a moral stance about what is taking place in the world.”

Preston’s report does not even attempt to feign objectivity. “He leads with empathy,” she coos, as the video displays a photograph of Wood as a child. “The 42-year-old grew up in foster care, suffered bouts of hunger and homelessness, and earned his degrees here.”

The word “dialogue” is doing some heavy lifting in Preston’s characterization of the events that led to the voluntary disbandment of Sacramento State’s campus occupation.

In reality, Wood entered into negotiations with the Hamas-endorsed students holding his campus hostage. It was only after the two parties reached an agreement that the occupiers dispersed.

The CBS segment allowed him to characterize these negotiations as “listening sessions.”

“I did 92 listening sessions. 75 minutes each, with over 1500 of our students, faculty, staff,” he can be seen telling Preston

After these “listening sessions” with terrorist sympathizers, Wood issued a memorandum and a number of policy updates at the behest of his campus chapter of Hamas Youth. After discussions with encampment leaders, the university announced that the protesters would soon dissipate, and indeed they did.

But CBS reported that Sacramento State’s occupation ended “as the school shared” a new policy promising to divest from corporations that “violate fundamental human rights.” The report’s language suggests that these two events are simply concurrent, and not mutually agreed upon transactional outcomes.

“We’re not investing in students’ future by engaging in relationships with companies that profit from war,” Wood says. 

The report then cuts to an interview with a female occupier who rejoices through tears that she felt “heard” by the university, and laments that “my whole life, no one’s asked me what I thought about…U.S. Arab relations.”

Notably absent from CBS’ report is the fact that these remarkably timed announcements feature remarkably similar language to that used in the list of demands issued by encampment organizers. 

Demands included that the California State University system “Declare the occupation, colonization, and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people, as well as the U.S.-Israeli genocide in Gaza, illegal and indefensible,” and “defend all student activism” and all students “especially Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim students,” while “ensuring full amnesty for protesting students.”

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The group also, of course, demanded that the school “Divest from all companies and partnerships that actively participate in the occupation, colonization, and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people,” including all partnerships with “institutions and programs in Israel.”

A memo accompanying the policy updates stated that “CSU Sacramento opposes and condemns all acts of genocide, ethnic cleansing, terrorism and other activities that violate fundamental human rights,” and “unequivocally condemn hate and bias in all forms.”

The university emphasized to news media that language within the policy changes– which were made to appease activists who directly accuse the state of Israel of ‘genocide’ and ‘ethnic cleansing’– was“meant to cover the many atrocities and challenges that are taking place all over the world.”

Preston uses her conversation with Wood to take a dig at schools who brought in police to restore order to their campuses.

“There were several schools across the country, you saw police move in with riot gear. This isn’t a war zone, it’s a college campus,” Preston says. 

Wood responds by saying that “as a Black man” he gets “ a heightened level of anxiety” about bringing police into a situation.

Editorials and op-eds reflect the opinion of the authors and not necessarily that of Campus Reform or the Leadership Institute.