69 million page views

Cat among the pigeons

Reader comment on item: The War on Campus

Submitted by S.R.Judah (United Kingdom), Oct 2, 2002 at 17:35

It seems that Middle East Forum's new site www.campuswatch.org, has Middle East Studies professors all a twitter. Reactions to the site vary from name calling to accusations of a McCarthyite witch-hunt. It appears that these latter day scholars do not take kindly to criticism that questions their output.

A case in point is Prof. Edward Said's vitriolic attack on Israel in http://www.ahram.org.eg/weekly/2002/605/sup21.htm. Now I have no objection to balanced criticism of Israel per-se. But among other things, in a rambling and hysterical attack, Said mentions Harvard President Lawrence H. Summers as being a Jew. Now Said must know the implications of naming someone a Jew, in the context of an Arab readership. And as such, he must have known that by so doing, in the minds of his Arab readers anyway, he was furnishing a clinching argument. When a supposedly respected MES academic of international repute, stoops to such methods to bolster or prove his point, one has to question the value of any scholarly output from such a source.

But leaving that aside, what is unforgivable, is that in academic debate, one never introduces the ethnicity of one's debating opponent, as an arguement. It is a cardinal sin in academic scholarship, and to do so wilfully, demeans not just MES professors but university scholarship as a whole.

So congratulations are due to Daniel Pipes. The near hysterical responses to his new site indicate that his critique has struck home; it has become the proverbial cat among the pigeons of the MES ivory towers.

Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2023 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)