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New Zealand Academia:
Studies in Corruption, Part 1

waikato [1]

Waikato University, Hamilton, New Zealand

2,955 words

Part 1 of 3

Some case studies in New Zealand provide examples of how blatantly tertiary education is being degraded by the pursuit of political agendas and plain careerism. New Zealand university degrees are poorly regarded elsewhere, a recent report stating: “New Zealand university degrees are the most worthless in the developed world, an international report reveals.” The OECD report states that New Zealand degrees are “at the bottom of the salary league.”

Ironically, it is from corruption-ridden Waikato University, Hamilton, New Zealand, that Professor Jacqueline Rowarth is reported to have said that what passes for school or even university education would be better suited as after-school activities.[1]

Yet even this honourable scholar declined to comment when I asked what she thought of Waikato’s antics in regard to the academic fraudulence of one of its alumni, Roel Van Leeuwen, and the antics of his supervisor, Dov Bing, an issue I had raised in 2008 amidst considerable news media publicity, most of it of an inadequate nature. Professor Rowarth stated that she was not at Waikato at the time. Apparently, having an opinion as to whether fraud and lies are right or wrong is something that cannot be definitively decided. However, Professor Rowarth’s reply was typical of the reaction of New Zealand academia in regard to the Van Leeuwen fraud, which universally either remained mute or via their trades union threatened action when the shabby careers of several “eminent scholars” (sic) and their protégés stood a narrow chance of being exposed.

The same newspaper report quotes well-known New Zealand polemical millionaire Sir Robert Jones as deploring the state of tertiary education and alluding to a 200-page doctoral thesis on his life and business practices, without ever talking to him. Sir Robert commented: “It was complete gibberish. If she really wanted to know what motivated me, she should have come and asked me.”[2]

While I do not have the disadvantage of a New Zealand tertiary education, I have published within the course of a few years more peer-reviewed papers than most New Zealand academics, and am in close communication with some of the truly great scholars in the world, as indicated by some of those who have appraised and even written prefaces to some of my books. I therefore know how to judge the merits or otherwise of what passes for “scholarship.” And in the social sciences – as distinct from the exemplary physical sciences – New Zealand ain’t got it. It is enough to string a list of liberal-left clichés together to have a dissertation even to doctoral level, regarded as meriting the highest accolades among academicians as they welcome yet another mediocrity to their ranks.

What Passes for a Doctoral Thesis These Days?

One example that recently came to my attention was that of Matthew Dentith, lecturer at Auckland University, who obtained a doctorate this year. Dr. Dentith has his own radio show and focuses on ridiculing Right-wing conspiracy theories.[3] Posting on a website of conservative activist John Ansell, who is campaigning against what he regards as Maori privileges entrenched under a misinterpretation of the Treaty of Waitangi, Dr. Dentith felt compelled to boast to the red-necked plebs of his new qualifications. Dr. Dentith, in “debating” with John Ansell, triumphantly resorts to a condescending:

As to who am I? I am the holder of a Ph.D. which is on the analysis and dissection of conspiracy theories. So I’m quite qualified to dissect and analyse yours.[4]

Dr. Dentith directed said bigots to his Ph.D. thesis published on the internet, so that all could marvel at his scholarly acumen.[5] Dr. Dentith is actually a defender of “conspiracy theories” but only those coming from part of the Left, while those on the Right are delusional.

So what does it take to garner a Doctorate from New Zealand academia these days? Answer: 57,000 words, utilizing 60 secondary sources.[6] Dr. Dentith also states often, again condescendingly, to all the uneducated bigots posting on John Ansell’s blogsite that they do not understand the processes of “peer review.” However, one might look in vain for Dr. Dentith’s own published record of peer-reviewed papers. A dissertation based on reviewing 60 books and articles, and a paper delivered at a conference, appears to be about it.

While a Ph.D. thesis in physics might be as short as a single page setting forth a new equation, for example, one should surely expect something more substantial in the social sciences, when the thesis is based on a review of some books without adding anything significantly new to the advancement of knowledge?

The Persecution of Dr. Joel Hayward

One of the most disgraceful acts of academic corruption involved the malicious treatment of Dr. Joel Hayward.

In 1993 Hayward completed an MA thesis on the literature of holocaust revisionism. Hayward is of Jewish descent, was a member of the New Zealand Friends of Israel, and a co-founder of Opposition to Anti-Semitism Inc. Yet in the course of his studies he had come to regard holocaust revisionist literature as making some valid points. It was a controversial conclusion that nonetheless garnered Hayward First Class Honors. When in the year 2000 a University “embargo” on public release of the thesis had expired, the New Zealand Jewish Council, and Professor Dov Bing — keep that name in mind — of Waikato University, launched a campaign to have Hayward’s Masters revoked, on the spurious grounds of “dishonesty.” The matter was made public by Bing, presumably on the safe assumption that the news media could be relied upon to mindlessly smear Hayward, which it duly did.[7] It should also be noted here that Bing, one of New Zealand’s primary apologists for Israel, has a habit of “leaking” information to the news media.

Although Bing et al. failed to have Hayward’s Masters revoked, the Working Party Report of the external enquiry agonized over Hayward having been permitted to undertake that course of research in the first place.

Hayward was harassed, threatened, and had several nervous breakdowns. He had to resign from his position as lecturer of defence at Massey University, Palmerton North, and became unemployable in New Zealand.[8] A few years later he went to the UK and obtained a prestigious post in academe. As for Dov Bing, he was not about to let the matter drop, despite Hayward’s retraction of some of his conclusions in the Thesis. Over the course of more than a decade Bing has continued to milk the Hayward matter for all its worth.[9]

Hayward Targeted Again

Hayward was again targeted in 2011 in what appears to be another campaign to have his academic career wrecked on the basis of the Judaic dictum “never forgive, never forget.” A feature in The Daily Mail was provocatively entitled: “Ayatollah of the RAF. Academic University Head is Muslim convert. Who claims Nazi gas chambers were British propaganda and criticises Libya air strikes.”[10]

The article claims that Dr. Hayward, Dean at Cranwell College, where British pilots are trained, is a convert to Islam who has taken a critical line on the NATO and UN bombing of Libya, and questioned whether the British air force should be placed at the service of a rebel army. Hayward is reported to have written in a magazine article that: “The West runs the risks of its good intentions (and inconsistencies) leading to distrust,” in its bombing of Libya.[11]

The Daily Mail claims that Hayward’s views had caused disquiet among “senior officers at RAF Cranwell, Lincolnshire,” where Hayward is the senior academic and was involved with the tutoring of Prince William. From here the article proceeds with smears that I believe lack plausibility:

In a letter to The Mail on Sunday entitled “The Air Force Ayatollah,” one senior officer expressed concern that Dr. Hayward was focusing more on ‘Islamist activities that are nothing to do with the RAF’.

He also accused him of giving Muslim cadets preferential treatment and making other students take a ‘softly, softly line when writing about Muslim terrorists/Islamist extremists’.

Another officer claimed cadets and lecturers ‘are in fear’ of expressing anything that might be construed as anti-Muslim sentiment. ‘Anyone who fails to follow the line that Islam is a peace-loving religion is hauled into his office for re-education,’ he said.

Last night Dr. Hayward said he did not ‘recognise’ the allegations.[12]

The article states that,

Dr. Hayward was appointed to RAF Cranwell in 2007, but was investigated the following year over complaints of ‘harassment and bullying’. It is not clear what became of the investigation. He is employed not by the RAF but by King’s College, London, which runs academic courses at Cranwell.[13]

The questions that should arise are not in regard to the dubious claims against Hayward’s character, but about whether complaints that started the year after his appointment to Cranwell were motivated by his having displeased certain interests in New Zealand. Given what this writer personally knows about those involved in the harassment of Hayward in New Zealand, I feel that it is a legitimate question.

Hayward is presumably in a good position to try to mitigate the anti-Islamic propaganda that is feeding the “clash of civilizations.” Having been hounded for years for his thesis on holocaust revisionism, knowing that he is under constant scrutiny by Zionists, it takes courage for Hayward to have his views on Islam published, despite his pointless back-pedalling on his MA thesis to try and appease those who cannot be appeased. He has set up a website called “Islam & War” which includes an essay by him entitled “The Qur’an and War: Observations on Islam and Just War.”[14]

Dov Bing & Dennis Green

Dr. Hayward’s predicament goes back to his student days at Christchurch, New Zealand. Dr. Dennis Green, later to serve as a religious studies lecturer at the deplorable Waikato University, Hamilton, and now touring the world engaged in something he calls “anarchaeology,” had been a student with Hayward at Canterbury University. They had formed a group, Opposition to Anti-Semitism. The Christchurch Press reported at the time of Hayward’s thesis debacle:

In May 1992, the university received a letter from an organisation called Opposition to Anti-Semitism Inc (OAS). The group, based in Christchurch, was concerned about the direction Dr. Hayward was taking in his then half-completed thesis.

Ironically, OAS had been formed a year earlier by Dr. Hayward with Yossie EtzHasadeh (previously Philip Woodfield of Christchurch, now in Israel) and Denis Green.

The organisation’s goal was to monitor anti-Semitic groups in New Zealand and warn people about Holocaust revisionism. Several members were converting to Judaism. Joel Hayward resigned from the group before he started his thesis.

He says he left OAS because of a personality clash.

OAS members soon became worried about the path Dr. Hayward’s thesis was taking and arranged to meet him. Dr. Hayward says he went along on January 30, 1992, to what he thought was an ordinary afternoon tea with friends. As they talked about his half-completed masters thesis a video camera hidden behind a hollowed out book recorded the entire conversation.

Dr. Hayward says a selective 13-minute transcript was made of the three-hour conversation by the OAS. “They only included statements that cast me in the worst possible light.”

The group sent Canterbury University registrar Alan Hayward (no relation) parts of the transcript with a letter detailing concerns about Joel Hayward’s views on the Holocaust.

Dr. Hayward did not find out about the video until two months after it was made. He considers the taping dishonest and unfair and says he nearly had a breakdown as a result.[15]

It was as a religious studies lecturer at Waikato University that Green is acknowledged by a certain Roel W. Van Leeuwen as being “the man who planted the seed” for a fraudulently contrived Masters thesis that Van Leeuwen completed in 2008. Furthermore, Van Leeuwen’s co-supervisor was Professor Dov Bing, lecturer in Political Science and Public Policy at Waikato University.[16]

Hence, enter again, two primary characters involved in the Hayward affair.

Dov Bing is a very active Zionist and apologist for Israel. He has been involved not only in the Hayward matter, but in the debacles concerning German student Hans Kupka, and Malcolm Evans, an award-winning cartoonist who had his eminent career ended due to his criticism of Israel in his Auckland Herald cartoons.[17]

It is in the matter of the Van Leeuwen thesis that I know something personally of the nature of Bing’s attitudes and tactics. The events against Hayward, Kupka, and starting from 2008 against this writer, follow similar scenarios.

Dr. Hayward wrote on his “old website” of what he endured in New Zealand:

Most of the garbage I received was unimaginative and only semi-literate, and phrases like “hope you die,” “you’ll get yours,” “die scum!,” “rot in hell,” and “we’ll be waiting for you outside your work” seemed so common that, had the calls and mail not come from different parts of New Zealand or been sent from many different email addresses, I probably would have concluded that they came from one small group of hate-filled people.

Some of this mail even came from a senior academic at another New Zealand university, and, with full specifics, I reported that academic’s behaviour and mail to the Working Party. I felt so distressed by some of the mail that, in a letter to the Head of the Working Party, Sir Ian Barker, dated 1 August 2000, I pointed out my concerns. Sir Ian told me during our interview on 10 October that he shared my grave concerns.[18]

The Working Party Report on Dr. Hayward referred to this matter of vindictive e-mails, stating:

2.47: On 2 October 1999, Dr. Hayward received what he describes as the first of many e-mails from Professor Dov Bing, Professor of Political Studies at the University of Waikato. . . . Dr. Hayward claimed that he had received several nasty e-mails from anonymous persons and was concerned at what action might be taken by Professor Bing and NZJC [New Zealand Jewish Council] . . .[19]

The Hans Kupka Affair

In the case of Hans Kupka,[20] pressure was applied on Waikato University when material first appeared in the student newspaper Nexus. As will be seen, the attitude of Nexus follows a certain line regardless of editor. Of this Professor Middleton in a “strictly confidential memo” to the Post-Graduate Studies Committee (PGSC) stated:

On April 11 the story broke in Nexus in an article full of inaccuracies. These inaccuracies result from the fact that the article is based on the same package of materials that was circulated by Dov Bing to all PGSC members and members of the University Council on or around the same day as the Nexus article appeared. I sent an e-mail round the PGSC members cautioning that the materials contained a large number of distortions and inaccuracies and that it was unwise to discuss this matter on e-mail.

During March and April, some of those charged with ensuring that due process is followed have been subjected to harassment and threats and have had to seek support of various kinds. I am prepared to speak only for myself, to whom the damage has been comparatively very minor. You will note that, despite my requests to Dov [Bing] that his correspondence and queries be directed to the Chair (the usual convention), correspondence on this matter continued to be addressed to me – with the result that inaccuracies and distortions of the facts have been attributed to me and circulated to the University Council and the media. My name has therefore been published in Nexus (April 11) and circulated round Council.[21]

Kupka, the target not only of media attention, and the machinations going on within the University administration and faculty, but even of street protests from student and Jewish groups, left New Zealand. He had been pushed out on the pretext that he might conduct interviews with those of German descent that were “Holocaust survivors.”

[1] Susan Edmunds, “Our Degrees,” Herald on Sunday, September 30, 2012.
[2] Jonathan Milne, “Wanted: inquiring minds,” ibid.
[3] Some of Dr. Dentith’s “scholarship” can be viewed here, in relation to critiquing those who oppose the post-modernist interpretation of the Treaty of Waitangi: http://all-embracing.episto.org/2012/08/13/treatygate-gate/ [2]
[4] Matthew Dentith to John Ansell, September 4, 2012, http://johnansell.wordpress.com/2012/08/12/treatygate-time-to-expose-the-con/ [3]
[5] Matthew Dentith to “Simple Simon,” September 4, 2012, http://johnansell.wordpress.com/2012/08/12/treatygate-time-to-expose-the-con/ [3]
[6] Matthew Richard Xavier Xander Xanthias Xerxes Xanatos X Dracos Hieronymus Oliphant Ransome Dentith, In Defence of Conspiracy Theories, Ph.D. dissertation, Auckland University, 2012, http://philpapers.org/archive/DENIDO-2.1.pdf [4]
[7] For a comprehensive account of the Hayward saga see: Dr. Thomas Fudge, “The Fate of Joel Hayward in New Zealand Hands: From Holocaust Historian to Holocaust?” http://www.joelhayward.com/thehistorynowarticle.htm [5]
Fudge’s article appeared in the journal of the History Department, Canterbury University, Christchurch, History Now, vol. 9, No. 2, May 2003, pp. 12-21. However, the University took fright after pressure from unnamed sources, destroyed the entire edition in a New Zealand example of book burning, and published another edition that excluded Fudge’s article. Fudge resigned his post at the University in protest.
[8] Thomas Fudge, ibid.
[9] “Research Publications for Dov Bing,” Waikato University, http://www.waikato.ac.nz/php/research.php?mode=show&author=412&mode=show&page=1As [6] will be seen, his peer-reviewed papers are quite scant.
[10] I. Gallagher, “Ayatollah of the RAF,” Mail Online, London, August 7, 2011, http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2023246/RAF-academic-head-Dr-Joel-Hayward-Muslim-convert-criticises-Libya-air-strikes.html [7]
[11] I. Gallagher, ibid.
[12] I. Gallagher, ibid.
[13] I. Gallagher, ibid.
[14] J. Hayward, “Islam & War,” http://www.islamandwar.com/ [8]
[15] S. Scanlon, “Making History,” Christchurch Press, May 20, 2000.
[16] R. W. Van Leeuwen, Dreamers of the Dark, MA Thesis, Waikato University, Hamilton, New Zealand, 2008, i, ii.
[17] John Braddock, “New Zealand Herald covers up reasons for sacking anti-Zionist cartoonist,” January 20, 2004, http://www.wsws.org/articles/2004/jan2004/newz-j20.shtml [9]
[18] J. Hayward, http://www.joelhayward.com/myoverviewcontd.htm [10]
[19] Hayward Thesis Working Party Report, http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/hayward/report.pdf 2.47, p. 29. Also: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/hayward/ [11]
[20] Kupka was a German student who sought to undertake his doctorate on the contribution of German language in New Zealand, but who allegedly had right-wing connections (Republican Party) in Germany.
[21] Professor Middleton, Kupka Report, Appendix Q, “Confidential Memo,” May 1 2000, To Members of the Post Graduate Studies Committee, http://unipr.waikato.ac.nz/news/kupka_report/pdf/q.pdf [12].