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Letter from Israel
David Frankfurter
Self-selection: anti-Semitic academics face extinction 
13th-Nov-2006 06:15 pm

The news from Israel has been rather depressing lately. Unacceptable military blunders on all fronts. Our enemies' double war crimes of deliberately attacking civilians from civilian neighbourhoods pointedly ignored, while an accident that we apologise for loudly condemned. Not enough that "wipe Israel off the map" Ahmadinejad in Iran is developing the bomb – six other Arab states announce that they intend going nuclear too. And the icing on the cake: a report from the Israeli Ynet news site. Although the UK academic boycott of Israel was voted down, it seems that UK academics and institutions are quietly refusing to have anything to do with Israelis. No consideration for the politics or the multiculturalism of the institutions they disdain, nor of the damage to the Arab students at those institutions. No recognition of Israel's right to exist – or at least protect its citizens from being slaughtered. Depressing.

Then I received the latest newsletter of Israel 21c. The news site comes out almost every day with a new wonder – describing the fruits of modern Israeli science and technology. It set me thinking about all the Jewish Nobel prize winners; about the disproportionate Israeli contribution to modern science. Computers, medicine, biotechnology, nanotechnology, renewable energy; Israelis are at the forefront.

It is not a coincidence that this Jewish state called Israel rose out of the ashes of an attempt by European and Arab states to eradicate their Jews. Indeed, many of Jewish hospitals, schools, universities and clubs around the world grew out of an unwillingness of the general society to educate, hire or socialize with Jews. They quickly grew into the finest institutions – a model for others that far surpassed their anti-Semitic rivals.

In the "publish or perish" academic world, access to and participation in the development of new ideas is critical. And if the inventiveness of Israeli scholarship and achievement is withheld, these academics and their journals will miss out. They may not become second rate and wither on the vine, but is it too much to dream that they will be overshadowed by those who meet their Israeli counterparts on an equal footing?

Wherever practical, let every supporter of Israel direct academic achievements, papers, studies, grants and donations to people and institutions that demonstrate honest and true academic freedom.

Let's make sure that these misguided academics – whether they shun the Jewish state and its citizens out of misguided political correctness, jealousy of their Israeli counterparts' achievements, or simple anti-Semitism – will not have a part in the miracle of modern Israel and its scientific discoveries..

Let the anti-Semites self-select themselves out of the race. Preferably out of the human race. how much traffic is going to my site

13th-Nov-2006 04:58 pm (UTC) - Hear! Hear!
Excellent letter!

Murray from Montreal
13th-Nov-2006 09:07 pm (UTC) - Speaking of self-selection...
At one time (this was a number of years ago) I would receive e-mail from the British journal -- The Lancet. Then, I began to note that articles would appear which were so stridently political as to cause me to wonder, "What is such an article doing in this journal?"

I put up with this for awhile, until finally I read one article and it was so silly that I decided, "Enough!" and since that time I have not bothered reading any articles from The Lancet. (The last article I had the misfortune of encountering was written by some Muslim who was decrying the treatment of Muslims in a so-called detention camp in Australia -- all sorts of "ailments" (bed-wetting, fist fights, nightmares, setting fires in the dorms, etc) were attributed to the conditions of the so-called "detention" camp (ie, it was all the fault of The Infidels.) What a joke! It was like something one would read in The Onion. Yet, this "article" had found its way in the UK "medical" journal! Seriously, who needs UK "journals" publishing articles that are so infantile? Pseudo-scientific articles do not "further" science; it retards and regresses scientific thought. And in today's busy world, I hope few people will have the time or patience to put up with it.
13th-Nov-2006 10:22 pm (UTC) - Self Selection
Alas, the hard wiring of Europeans to be antSemitic seems beyond the help of psychotherapy or anything that medical science can achieve at the moment. I agree with the author, as long as Israel and the Jews of the Diaspora can survive, it's their loss.
20th-Nov-2006 09:55 pm (UTC)
What about those of us who shun Israel for being a racist, colonial state that values the acquisition of more land over the lives of its own citizens?

Your blog is so full of the typical Zionist drivel it makes me sad.
31st-May-2007 12:56 pm (UTC) - Ignorant self-serving racist.
And your anti-Semitic drivel makes me mad.
5th-Dec-2006 01:58 am (UTC) - The British Church Newspaper
An edited form of this article appeared in the British Church Newspaper
31st-May-2007 12:54 pm (UTC) - Academic Boycott UK
Thank you David for your excellent article. I sent it to Sally Hunt as per below, to "educate" the boycotters.I hope others do the same.
Miriam M


Earlier today (May 30, 2007), the United Kingdom's University and

College Union endorsed the principle of a boycott of Israeli academic institutions, and called for an educational campaign among UCU members in support of such a boycott. Those who are interested in this issue might want to communicate their opinions to UCU General Secretary

Sally Hunt: sallyhuntucu@googlemail.com

2nd-May-2008 03:01 am (UTC) - Re: Academic Boycott UK
Very Interesting Site? In some ways I agree and in some ways I do not. I will tell you what divides my thought about this, if you will care to post this. Maybe others feel the way I do.

Firstly, I have a deep sympathy and empathy for the Jews that suffered in the holocaust, and for the diaspora which had to wander around for decades without owning their own territory. It must have been horrible to sport a culture in an underground way and keep it together in spite of no national boundaries that delineated what you are as a people. So when I heard that the nation had been born, something inside me had celebrated, as if I knew my God had celebrated this also.

However, of recent, I hear that Israel is committing these acts of war in defense of their land, and in some cases these are illegal acts. Still I favor peace and reconciliation instead of boycotting academics who are not in the business of supporting and carrying out war but are in the business of teaching, researching, lecturing, promoting peace and health with their scientific and literary achievements.

It is the war and hate mongers among the Israel nation who are using you as a reason to conduct these illegal acts of war that I am concerned about, much as if Iraq has its terrorists which terrorize their own people, Israel too must have its terrorists which with governmental and military authority are committing acts of terror to another people. It is Israel of the peace making kind and only the peacemakers in Israel who must take a firm stance against illegal acts of war and terrorism and oust those policymakers in their government who give in to and resort to war tactics that are deplorable to others.

I believe that Jews have made fantastic contributions to the world. If they continue to exist as a solitary nation, with extreme boundaries, refusing to share their cultural attainment, the world will not be a better place but a worse one. I don't believe that Israel needs boundaries anymore. They have proven in their own right they can survive.......even the worst things. What Israel needs now is a review of their Constitutional foundations and a renewal with compassion and inclusion for other nations. This is a telling point in the world, whether Israel can surpass even America on this point and extend their hands in loving reconciliation. It is easy to make war. Is it easy also to make peace. Of two great nations one which makes war and other peace, I believe it is the stronger nation that can make peace. God is with that nation. Salome.

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