Middle East studies in the News
Rashid Khalidi's Commentary Misused Language [Letter to the Editor]
by Eric Wolf Fried
Rashid Khalidi complains about misuse of language, but he misuses language egregiously in his commentary ("Mideast peace needs right words," Nov. 20). He suggests Palestinians in Gaza are victims of Israeli terror, but Israel's actions in Gaza were the opposite of terror. They were directed at Hamas and other terrorist groups, not at civilians. Their purpose was to stop the rockets, missiles and shells aimed by the thousands at civilian targets in Israel. To conflate Israeli self-defense with Palestinian terror is a misuse of language.
Mr. Khalidi complains about the term "honest broker" being applied to the U.S. because the United States often sides with Israel. An honest broker doesn't occupy neutral ground between aggressor and defender. An honest broker seeks the truth. The truth is Israel and the Jews of the area have been under siege from the Palestinian Arabs, from the surrounding Arab countries and from much of the Muslim world beyond for close to a century.
Mr. Khalidi uses the term "Israel lobby," as if it is wrong for most Americans to support Israel against terrorism, military attack, boycott, blockade, delegitimizing, anti-Semitism, libel, incitement to violence and hate. Another misuse of language on Mr. Khalidi's part.
Mr. Khalidi uses words as propaganda, to defeat thought. He wants to make it impossible to call terrorism for what it is. As a Columbia University graduate, I am dismayed and embarrassed that my school should lend its prestige to such an abuser of language.Note: Articles listed under "Middle East studies in the News" provide information on current developments concerning Middle East studies on North American campuses. These reports do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch and do not necessarily correspond to Campus Watch's critique.
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