Tuesday, September 02, 2003


Returning from work today, I found a new issue of the Middle East Studies Association newsletter, including an update on the activities of CAFMENA, the Committee on Academic Freedom in the Middle East and North Africa. MESA is often accused of turning a blind eye toward the problems of autocracy in the Arab world, but this organization shows that this is not the case, and that scholars who have travelled to, befriended the people of, and in many cases even hail from the region care about its problems just as much, if not more, than most Americans. And if you scan their letters page, you see them condemning terrorist organizations as much as Israel. Just a sample:

"Hamas spokespersons have attempted to justify this and other recent suicide bombings as retaliation and reprisal for Israeli attacks that have killed Palestinian civilians. However, under international humanitarian law, the absolute prohibition against targeting civilians includes acts of reprisal. This prohibition is categorical, and applies to attacks committed by armed opposition groups as well as government security forces."

This might be something to keep in mind when reading some of the pieces on Campus Watch.


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