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Wisconsin's Ward Churchill? UW-Madison lecturer on Islam is leading 9/11 conspiracy theorist
AM 620 WTMJ Newsradio ^ | 6/29/06 | Jessica McBride

Posted on 06/29/2006 1:26:49 PM PDT by Jean S

Wisconsin's Ward Churchill? UW-Madison lecturer on Islam is leading 9/11 conspiracy theorist who thinks the U.S. government blew up the Trade Center and wrote letter discussing Bush execution

++++++++++audio coming soon

How is UW-Madison lecturer Kevin Barrett like Ward Churchill? Actually, he's not. He's whackier. Churchill believes the terrorists caused the World Trade Center attacks. He just thinks they were justified in some manner. And now the university where he has tenure in Colorado is trying to fire him.

Remember how upset we all got about Churchill, who was just a prof from another state who was in town for one lousy speech? Wait until you hear about Barrett, who is teaching a large Introductory to Islam class to UW-Madison undergrads this fall. (He estimates it will have about 200 students).

Barrett, who started a national group on 9/11 conspiracy theories, doesn't believe the terrorists caused the World Trade Center attacks. He thinks the government used a controlled demolition to do it (with Dick Cheney the likely mastermind) and he thinks that Mohammad Atta was probably a government pawn and patsy. He thinks that al-Qaida as we know it is a myth fabricated by the government (or at the very least a US government front group and he calls it al-CIA-duh to underscore his point). He also believes that many of the 9/11 hijackers are alive and that the 9/11 terrorist attacks have nothing to do with Islam. He compares those who believe the terrorists caused 9/11 to the "good Germans" who bought into Nazi ideology and says we're a bunch of stupid racists for believing the "Big Lie" that the terrorists, not the government, caused 9/11. He thinks the war on Terror and 9/11 are both "Orwellian hoaxes." He refuses to say that bin Laden is evil.

In a presumably tongue in cheek letter to the Secret Service after he says a fellow 9/11 conspiracy theorist had weapons confiscated by them after predicting Bush would be shot for treason, Barrett predicts that a majority of Americans will soon eagerly anticipate Bush's execution for the mass murder of Americans on 9/11 (read the whole letter at the end of this posting). It also discusses Bush being gassed, hung, and electrocuted.

I repeat. This guy is teaching Introduction to Islam at UW-Madison this fall.

We've been at war for several decades with Islamo fascist terrorists who want to destroy our way of life. And a prestigious, publicly funded university is giving our tax dollars to a guy who thinks that our government did it and that it's OK to write sarcastic letters about a Bush execution. And is making a cottage industry of it. This guy didn't rip off Charlie Sheen. Charlie Sheen probably ripped off him.

And that's just for starters. What, you say? We all saw the planes fly into the buildings. He thinks the government was behind that too. I guess it was a diversion to cover up the government's planned demolition of the buildings and murder of 3,000 Americans. Or something like that. Even Zarqawi was part of the American government's plot.

Well, there are a lot of garden-variety conspiracy theorists out there. So what?

The so what is that Barrett is teaching Introduction to Islam courses at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (he says he has a 50% appointment) and Edgewood college this fall. In fact, he's been teaching for both schools for some time. I verified this fact with both schools today. Specifically, he is teaching Islam, religion and culture at UW Madison in the fall. Check it out here.

The publicly funded university that hired Barrett to teach a large introductory course for undergrads and supervise several TAs this fall - UW-Madison - made a choice, as he is not protected by academic freedom or tenure like Churchill. As a lecturer, he works under a contract renewed each semester. I think this says a lot about how out of touch with the mainstream some academics are. (if it's a required class, this is even worse, and I am still checking into that).

Barrett says that his views are no surprise to his colleagues. In fact, he claims they are shared by many of them, although I have no way to verify the veracity of that, although his hiring does speak volumes.

Hat tip on this story goes to Dad29 blog. I am going to have to add him to my blogroll for this, but I am afraid that if I do everybody else will be replicated five times. This is why I love citizen blogs. They come up with things no one else does.

The other day, Dad29 broke the news that the website from one of the leading 9/11 conspiracy groups lists Barrett as a full member. Dad29 questioned why our tax dollars were being spent on hiring a man he called a "tinfoil hat professor."

I thought that was a very good question (although it turns out he's not technically a professor; as mentioned, he's a lecturer hired a semester at a time).

I spent the day doing some digging around. I kept running across whackier and whackier writings. This guy is all over the Web. He's been quoted in Madison newspapers. He's scheduled 9/11 conspiracy theory speeches. Each seemed nuttier than the next.

Such as when Barrett wrote that:

As a Ph.D. Islamologist and Arabist I really hate to say this, but I'll say it anyway: 9/11 had nothing to do with Islam. The war on terror is as phony as the latest Osama bin Laden tape...The real bin Laden, who insisted that he had nothing to do with 9/11, has been dead since late 2001 or early 2002. The fake messages have been fabricated by "al-CIA-duh" to support the Bush regime and its phony "war on terror." It is time for Americans to rise up in revolt against the fake terror masters who are looting U.S. taxpayers, torching our Constitution, destroying our economy, and threatening nuclear Armageddon. "

And so forth. Fearing my head would explode, I decided this needed to be exposed and subsequently invited Mr. Barrett to appear on my show, which he did for an hour tonight, revealing that he's scheduled to speak at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee soon.

It's a free country. If people want to espouse nutty conspiracy theories, that's their right. If Kevin Barrett wants to don a tinfoil hat and stand on a street corner, and he can get people to listen to him, more power to him. But it's another thing altogether when they are hired by a taxpayer-supported university to teach Introduction to Islam, as Barrett will do this fall at UW-Madison. He's also team teaching a course about Islam at Edgewood College this fall.

Worse, he admits that he discusses 9/11 theories in the classroom, and that some students have been persuaded by what he labels the 9/11 Big Lie and 9/11 myth after hearing him speak. He discussed 9/11 conspiracy theories in a class about folklore. It's our view of 9/11 that he sees as the folktale. He's editing a book he plans to have students read on the topic.

He also says that he gives both sides and lets students make up their own minds. But I'd question why students at UW-Madison are being exposed to 9/11 conspiracy myths as if they seriously represent another "side."

One of my callers accused me of being unwilling to hear what Mr. Barrett had to say. That individuals believe that entertaining 9/11 conspiracy theories is necessary or a person is "closeminded" is part of the problem (akin to my seriously debating someone about whether martians are living among us). So I tried to avoid engaging Barrett in a tit-for-tat debate about the mechanics of the World Trade Center collapse, but rather just gave him a lot of rope instead, to expose his views (Popular Mechanics has a great discussion debunking 9/11 conspiracy theories if you are interested).

I don't believe that whether Dick Cheney brought down the World Trade Center or whether Mohammed Atta was just a US government pawn are topics for serious debate. Unless we're debating what it says about our university system because administrators there apparently don't see the problem with hiring someone who espouses these beliefs and who apparently presents them to students as something warranting serious discussion. We aren't talking about the university hiring someone who opposes the Iraq war, or something of that vein. I don't have any problem with that, obviously, although they should keep their personal ideology out of the classroom. This is something different altogether, hence the analogy to Churchill. This isn't even in the mainstream. Or is it in the academic mainstream? That certainly is the obvious question posed by his hiring.

How whacky is Barrett? He's even farther out there than his writings. On my show, he stated pointblank that he believes the WTC were likely blown up by the government using controlled demolition. He believes that Dick Cheney may be behind it. He thinks many of the 9/11 hijackers are actually alive, citing the BBC. He believes that al-Qaida is a CIA creation to divert attention from the fact that the WTC were brought down by.... controlled demolition. He refused to say that Osama bin Laden is an evil man, although I asked him this question several times. He refers to the "so-called" terrorist threat. He believes the FBI was responsible for the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. And on and on.

He illustrates an alarming worldview characterized by virulent anti-government paranoia. If he was just one guy teaching at a single university that would be one thing. But he's not. The Chronicle of Higher Education recently penned an article on academics who pursue 9/11 conspiracy theories. They noted:

In recent months, interest in September 11-conspiracy theories has surged. Since January, traffic to the major conspiracy Web sites has increased steadily. The number of blogs that mention "9/11" and "conspiracy" each day has climbed from a handful to over a hundred.

Since it's being taught in university classes to impressionable undergrads, no wonder.

And a lot of his rhetoric isn't that far removed from that which is espoused by the NY Times, anti-war referendum organizers, Cindy Sheehan, and the national Democratic Party. The rhetoric is characterized by an obsessive hatred of George Bush and any governmental authority or power, a tendency to give every benefit of the doubt to our enemy and none to our administration, a moral relativism that holds that we are just as evil as the other side (see Mike Lukovich's recent cartoon), or, worse, that we are more evil than they are because we created them, and they are just misunderstood. Kevin Barrett just takes it a few steps farther than the rest, but really his views are on the same plane.

This worldview is harbored by too many of our elites in this country - in academia, in the media, particularly on the east coast, in Hollywood, and in the upper echelons of national Democratic leadership. And it's hobbling our ability to conduct the war on Terror. That's why it matters. One wonders where Barrett got his ideas, product as he is of our fine university system.

On June 22, 2006, he identified himself as:

Kevin Barrett
Lecturer, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Lecturer, Edgewood College of Madison
Coordinator, Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance for 9/11 Truth (
Member, Scholars for 9/11 Truth (
Member, Scientific Panel for the Investigation of 9/11 (

He wrote a diatribe this month about a New York Times article on a 9/11 conspiracy conference he says he helped organize in which he said:

If I could not distinguish between garden-variety conspiracy legends and solid 9/11-revisionist historiography, I would hardly be a suitable candidate to teach Folklore at one of America’s leading public universities, as I did last fall. Likewise, if my arguments that the “Islamic terrorist threat” is fabricated, that “al-Qaida” is really al-CIA-duh, that the “Bin Laden confession video” is ludicrously phony, and so on, were viewed as crazy, I would hardly have been chosen to teach the introductory courses on Islam at both the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Edgewood College of Madison next fall.

To which I say: Good question. Why was he? Either they have no idea what he stands for (then they have no idea about google) or they don't care. Which is worse?

He adds:

After two and a half years of very public 9/11 truth work, which included bringing David Griffin and Morgan Reynolds to wildly successful, officially-sanctioned events at U.W.-Madison, I have yet to hear a single negative word from a single colleague or administrator. On the contrary, I have received widespread support and encouragement from my colleagues, most of whom at least tend to agree with my interpretation of 9/11 but prefer not to say so in public. (One who has gone public is my Edgewood College Religious Studies colleague (NAME REMOVED BY ME), a MUJCA endorser.)

Another example:

Synopsis: In “Apocalypse of Coercion” (Global Outlook #11, June 2006) I used Douglas Rushkoff’s landmark book Coercion as a touchstone for understanding 9/11 as a psychological warfare operation. Rushkoff’s well-researched insights into the mind-control techniques of car salesmen, spin doctors, cult leaders, and CIA psych-war specialists explain how 9/11 was designed as a war-triggering “New Pearl Harbor.” In the follow-up article “Deprogramming the Bush Cult” I use Marc Galanter’s analysis of how cults control their followers to argue that the 9/11 psy-op created a “Bush Cult” of war fever, pseudo-patriotism, and unquestioning compliance with increasingly insane leadership. My conclusion is that if we are to avoid a national Jonestown, we must understand and expose the way anxiety-induction followed by anxiety-reduction has been used to establish cult-like control of the American people during the 9/11-initiated “war on terror.”

Here's what he taught at Edgewood in Fall 2005:

HI 404 006 Challenge of Islam (4 cr.)

Jim Goulding, Edgewood Religious Studies Department
Kevin Barrett, Arabic Languages and Literature Scholar

Interdisciplinary course that looks at how the events of 9/11 have caused both a growing interest in understanding Islam and an increased misunderstanding and animosity toward the Muslim faith accompanied by stereotyping and profiling Muslim individuals. Students will complete an experiential component through interaction with the Muslim community of Madison, introducing them to basic beliefs and practices of Islam.

What does the 9/11 'Scholars for Truth" believe (the group where Dad29 first discovered him mentioned)? These are the Sept. 11 nuts, who believe that the government was behind the attacks. Here's how they define themselves, straight off their website:

Scholars for 9/11 Truth" (S9/11T) is a non-partisan association of faculty, students, and scholars, in fields as diverse as history, science, military affairs, psychology, and philosophy, dedicated to exposing falsehoods and to revealing truths behind 9/11. The members of S9/11T are encouraged to take an active role by devoting themselves to reporting the results of research on 9/11 to the nation and the world by means of lectures, articles, and other venues.

S9/11T members are convinced their research proves the current administration has been dishonest about what happened in New York and Washington, D.C.

These experts contend that books and articles by members and other associates have established that the World Trade Center was almost certainly brought down by controlled demolitions and that the available relevant evidence casts grave doubt on the government's official story about the attack on the Pentagon.

They believe that the government not only permitted 9/11 to occur but may even have orchestrated these events to facilitate its political agenda.

Barrett is a founding member of a group called the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance for 9/11 Truth.

In the posting in which he identified himself as a UW-Madison lecturer, he was responding to a Chronicle of Higher Education article on professors who are 9/11 conspiracy theorists. He wrote in part:

"Personally, I find 9/11-triggered Islamophobia to be far beyond paranoid, while the common-sense hypothesis that this war, like all our wars, was set off by a fabricated war-trigger incident strikes me as sane, lucid, and in accord with Occam’s razor. Indeed, after studying the issue intensively for more than two years, I am tempted to say that those who accept the by now thoroughly-discredited official myth of 9/11 (as, I am ashamed to admit, I once did) are stupid, paranoid, and racist—the moral and intellectual equivalent of the “good Germans” who succumbed to Nazi mythology."

Here he writes that federal agents confiscated weapons from a member of his organization.

Al-Jazeera quotes him as an
authoritative source on 9/11 whackery.

Here he gives a whacky introduction to a 9/11 conspiracist who spoke at the UW historical society. This was not his only attempt at indoctrinating students.

He identified himself as a UW Madison and Edgewood College instructor in a diatribe about Hurricane Katrina, calling 9/11 and the War on Terror "Orwellian hoaxes."

Read this letter he emailed to the U.S. Secret Service.

MUJCA Coordinator Questions Secret Service on Kentucky Gun Confiscation

emailed to:

Public Relations Office
United States Secret Service

To Whom It May Concern,

It has come to my attention that NAME REMOVED BY ME, a Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance for 9/11 Truth activist in Kentucky, has been visited by four of your agents, and that his lawfully-possessed firearms have been twice confiscated as the result of an email statement Mr. NAME REMOVED BY ME made concerning our twice-unelected, World Trade Center destroying pseudo-President. Mr. NAME REMOVED BY ME's email statement made no threat, but simply predicted: "Eventually he (Bush) will be shot for treason."

I am writing because I am concerned that Mr. NAME REMOVED BY ME's statement may be incorrect, and I wish to request Secret Service guidelines about how I may correct Mr. NAME REMOVED's mistake without running afoul of your agents. As I understand it, the usual penalty for treason is hanging, not death by firing squad. In that case, it is likely that Mr. Bush will be hanged, not shot, for treason. By making this prediction, am I running the risk of having my clothesline confiscated? I also think that there is a real possibility that Mr. Bush will be electrocuted for the mass murder of 2,500 Americans in the World Trade Center. By stating this, am I risking a court order shutting off my electricity? I also foresee a small but very real possibility that Mr. Bush will die in the gas chamber. Does raising this possibility mean that my gas could be cut off?

I appreciate the difficulty you guys must be having doing your job right now, with tens of millions of Americans calling for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and company to be prosecuted and (presumably) executed for 9/11 high treason. With almost half the country believing the official 9/11 story is a cover-up (Zogby poll, May 2006) it won't be long before an overwhelming majority of Americans joins Mr. NAME REMOVED in eagerly anticipating Bush's execution--which will put you fellas in a difficult position. Maybe it's time to save the country a lot of heartache, and rat out whoever it was in the SS who kept Bush at that school in Florida long after the second plane hit the building.

Thank you for your attention, and I look forward to not hearing from you -- though if my clothesline disappears I'll know who it was.


Kevin Barrett

University of Wisconsin-Madison
Edgewood College of Madison

TOPICS: Editorial; News/Current Events; US: Wisconsin
KEYWORDS: 911truther; academia; barkingmoonbats; barrett; communists; education; hippies; kevinbarrett; libertarians; madistan; moonbats; moscowonmendota; ronpaul; tinfoil; tinfoilprofessor; uwmadison; wardchurchill; worldcantwait
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1 posted on 06/29/2006 1:26:52 PM PDT by Jean S
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To: JeanS

One more idiot for the citizens of the Peoples Republic of Wisconsin to appologize for: First Madison, then our boy Rusty, then Slimey Jimmy Doyle, and now this sh*t.

Boy.......almost makes you want to move to Iowa!

2 posted on 06/29/2006 1:33:00 PM PDT by newcthem
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To: JeanS

Why does Madison have more than its share of kooks ?

3 posted on 06/29/2006 1:33:44 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
Why does Madison have more than its share of kooks ?

What is our allotment? We'll be happy to send any excess to MO.

4 posted on 06/29/2006 1:36:53 PM PDT by knittnmom (...surrounded by reality)
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To: Diana in Wisconsin; Extremely Extreme Extremist


5 posted on 06/29/2006 1:38:35 PM PDT by Jean S
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To: JeanS

The conclusion one must draw from such examples isn't that every institution has its bad apples but rather that, at least in the liberal arts in America, moral turpitude and political hucksterism pervades higher education.

Radical criminals with questionable academic credentials flourish in a milieu that bristles with hostility toward real scholars who don't toe the party line—witness the case of former Harvard President Lawrence Summers.

Individuals with prison records or FBI rap sheets don't get into major educational institutions because they fudge their resumes.

They get in because they share the political dogmas of those who hire them—and they flourish for the same reason.

6 posted on 06/29/2006 1:39:19 PM PDT by george76 (Ward Churchill : Fake Indian, Fake Scholarship, and Fake Art)
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To: newcthem

"Vote with your wallets."

7 posted on 06/29/2006 1:40:28 PM PDT by talleyman (Kerry & the Surrender-Donkey Treasoncrats - trashing the troops for 40 years.)
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To: JeanS

SWEET Ann Coulter takes another look at the Ward Churchill controversy:

Tenure was supposed to create an atmosphere of open debate and inquiry, but instead has created havens for talentless cowards who want to be insulated from life.

Rather than fostering a climate of open inquiry, college campuses have become fascist colonies of anti-American hate speech, hypersensitivity, speech codes, banned words and prohibited scientific inquiry.

Even leftists don't try to defend Churchill on grounds that he is Galileo pursuing an abstract search for the truth.

They simply invoke "free speech," like a deus ex machina to end all discussion. Like the words "diverse" and "tolerance," "free speech" means nothing but: "Shut up, we win."

8 posted on 06/29/2006 1:40:41 PM PDT by george76 (Ward Churchill : Fake Indian, Fake Scholarship, and Fake Art)
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To: JeanS

Kevin Barrett is a hole, surrounded by ass.

9 posted on 06/29/2006 1:43:13 PM PDT by Mikey_1962 (If you build it, they won't come...)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
On the Madison (4 square miles surrounded by reality) front: dig a bit deeper and you'll find that "Madison Ward" is one of the cleaner UW prof's.

27 felons employed by UW-Madison:

Medical school professor Roberto Coronado, currently serving eight years in prison for child molestation, was released from employment at UW-Madison last month.

In addition to Coronado, medical school professor Steven Clark is serving a one-year sentence for stalking.

And Lewis Keith Cohen, a comparative literature professor, was sentenced to 30 days in jail and eight years probation in the summer for child enticement and using the Internet to send explicit material to a child.

Controversy flared last fall when it was revealed that Cohen had returned to work at the university, commuting from jail to campus for work release.

10 posted on 06/29/2006 1:44:49 PM PDT by sbMKE
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To: JeanS

I wonder if it's hard going through life being that stupid, delusional, cuckoo, nuts, and crazy.

11 posted on 06/29/2006 1:50:22 PM PDT by Luna (Lobbing the Holy Hand Grenade at Liberalism)
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To: JeanS
Barrett, who started a national group on 9/11 conspiracy theories, doesn't believe the terrorists caused the World Trade Center attacks. He thinks the government used a controlled demolition to do it (with Dick Cheney the likely mastermind)

How dumb can you be. Everyone knows it was Hillary Clinton who masterminded 9/11.

12 posted on 06/29/2006 1:54:26 PM PDT by Always Right
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To: JeanS

As they used to say in The Old West....."Git a rope!!!"

13 posted on 06/29/2006 1:55:41 PM PDT by navyblue (at one.)
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To: JeanS
I have a number of friends in WI, and they all say the same thing: Madison is just nuts.

Someone needs to tell this stupid, stupid man that while he has every right to his opinion that each time he gives voice to it he is stupidity is passed along... like an STD after a keg party.

14 posted on 06/29/2006 2:01:21 PM PDT by Volunteer (Just so you know, I am ashamed the Dixie Chicks make records in Nashville.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

Probably because it has the University where all these Bozos and idiots can get a job. Who else would want them?
Personally, when I drive thru Madison (if I have to) I don't stop unless I can urinate on the city.

15 posted on 06/29/2006 2:02:42 PM PDT by pankot
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To: JeanS
Lecturer? No tenure issues. Fire him yesterday.

No tenure for the humanities!

16 posted on 06/29/2006 2:03:43 PM PDT by AmishDude (I am the King Nut.)
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To: JeanS

Churchill is both a crook and a kook. He was fired only because he is a crook. Kooks who are not crooks are welcome at universities.

17 posted on 06/29/2006 2:03:54 PM PDT by norwaypinesavage
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To: JeanS
Give Churchill a raise, so he can drink himself to death.
18 posted on 06/29/2006 2:28:00 PM PDT by Candor7 (Into Liberal flatulance goes the best hope of the West, and who wants to be a smart feller?)
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To: norwaypinesavage

This kind of irrational nonsense has no place in a university and I hope the radio host will get him canned.

19 posted on 06/29/2006 2:30:38 PM PDT by ClaireSolt (.)
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To: Watery Tart; KRAUTMAN; reformedliberal; Mygirlsmom; codercpc; s2baccha; ozaukeemom; PjhCPA; ...

"Zoykes!" Ping.

20 posted on 06/29/2006 2:34:20 PM PDT by Diana in Wisconsin (Save The Earth. It's The Only Planet With Chocolate.)
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