I wonder if Sawrthmore students would protest drone killer in chief, President Obama?

Zack Budryck of Inside Higher Ed reports.

A Speaker Withdraws at Swarthmore

Robert Zoellick withdrew on Friday as Swarthmore College’s commencement speaker, following criticism from some students that his support for the Iraq war and his role in the administration of President George W. Bush is at odds with the college’s Quaker roots.

“I don’t want to disrupt what should be a special day for the graduates, their families, and friends,” Zoellick said Friday, according to an e-mail Swarthmore’s president, Rebecca Chopp, sent to the college’s students and faculty members. “Nor do I have an interest in participating in an unnecessarily controversial event.”

Zoellick, a Swarthmore alumnus, was scheduled to speak and receive an honorary degree (which he says he will not now accept) at the college’s commencement on June 2. Zoellick was appointed by President Bush as deputy secretary of state in 2005, and nominated by Bush as president of the World Bank in 2007. He has also been associated with the Project for a New American Century, a neo-conservative think tank that pushed strongly for the war in Iraq. In 1998, Zoellick was one of the signers of a letter from PNAC to President Clinton urging military intervention against Saddam Hussein.

Swarthmore, while non-sectarian, remains proud of its Quaker roots, including an anti-war tradition.

“I, and many others, are opposed to Zoellick’s honorary degree for a number of reasons. His tenure at the World Bank and as U.S. Trade Representative are among them,” a Swarthmore student who identified as “Will L.” posted on the website of the Swarthmore Daily Gazette in late March. “So is his time in the private sector, when he worked at Goldman Sachs and Fannie Mae — two institutions that would later become infamous for their role in the 2008 financial collapse. So is his role in helping build an ideological foundation for the Iraq War.