Prof. Abbas Ghassemi, who teaches engineering at UC Merced, will not be teaching in the upcoming Spring semester, according to reports.
Prof. Ghassemi has deleted a Twitter account, dating from July 2019, from which he allegedly tweeted a drawing labelled “the Zionist Brain” that divided an image of a brain into sections that used antisemitic tropes such as avarice and “world domination”. Other areas of the brain were labelled “land usurpation” and “compulsive-lying”. The same image has been seen on a website dedicated to peddling antisemitic conspiracy theories.
Other tweets included wording such as “Surprise, surprise!! The entire system in America is controlled by [the] Zionist. Change of president is just a surface polish, change of veneer. Same trash different pile!” and “the Zionists and IsraHell interest have embedded themselves in every component of the American system, media, banking, policy, commerce…just a veneer of serving US interest and population – everyone pretends that is the case.”
When the tweets were first revealed, a spokesperson for UC Merced said:“As the now-inactive Twitter account made clear, these were the opinions of a private individual.” But since then it is understood that an investigation has been opened and is still ongoing while Prof. Ghassemi is apparently suspended.