Moonlighting: Non-Specialists in the News
Why Can't Ben Gurion University be as Principled as DePaul University? [on Norman Finkelstein and Neve Gordon]
by Steven Plaut
You remember Norman Finkelstein? The Jewish-born anti-Semite who made a career out of supporting Hezbollah terror and trivializing the Holocaust, the darling of the Neo-Nazis, the guy who claims that all Holocaust survivors are cheats, liars, thieves, and that Germany is the victim of Jewish extortionists?
Brooklyn-born Finkelstein, best known for his horrific "Holocaust Industry," a "book" he crayoned devoted to insulting Holocaust survivors and long celebrated by Islamofascists, Holocaust Deniers, and Neo-Nazis, has been fired from every academic position he ever held. Last year, DePaul University, a large Catholic school in Chicago, took the courageous step of firing Finkelstein. Finkelstein is regarded by some to be a Holocaust Denier. In spite of the propaganda juggernaut that operated on his behalf by the anti-Israel lobby when he was up for tenure, DePaul recognized that Finkelstein is a vulgar hate propagandist pretending to be a scholar, that he has never engaged in serious academic research, that he is regarded as a "scholar" only by the same sorts of people who regard David Irving and Ward Churchill to be scholars.
Ever since getting the boot out of DePaul, Finkelstein has been unemployed. This week the Chronicles of Higher Education reports that the Fink cannot even get a job as an adjunct in any institution of higher learning - the bottom of the academic barrel.
"In an article, Mr. Finkelstein said he had lectured at 40 campuses in the last year. 'I would ask faculty there about a position and was told it was out of the question,' he said. 'I can't even get an adjunct appointment for one semester.' Mr. Finkelstein is living in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he grew up, in the apartment of his deceased father. He told The Jewish Week, a local newspaper, that he doubted he could get even a job teaching high school. 'The way they do background checks is to Google your name,' he said. 'With me, they would get 30,000 Web sites, one-third of them saying I am a Holocaust denier, a supporter of terrorism, a crackpot, and a lunatic.' Mr. Finkelstein said he was working on a new book, A Farewell to Israel: The Coming Break-Up of American Zionism, although he does not yet have a publisher."
Now as happy as the above news must be for every Jew, the dealing with Finkelstein should be compared with the complain failure on the part of Ben Gurion University to act with the same sort of principled integrity with respect to its own groupie of Norman Finkelstein, the guy who is the main Israeli apologist for Finkelstein's shenanigans, Neve Gordon, who is himself an anti-Israel propagandist who has built a career on turning out hate propaganda misrepresented as scholarship. Whereas a Catholic university in Chicago had the courage to dump its anti-Israel pseudo-academic, Ben Gurion University decided to give ITS Norman Finkelstein tenure. Campus officials there have gone out of their way to falsely paint Gordon as a serious academic and scholar, praising his "research," just like the Destroy-Israel Lobby paints Finkelstein as a scholar.
Both Gordon and Finkelstein have built careers on demonizing Israel and painting it as a fascist racist evil colonialist entity that should not exist. Both publish propaganda "books," in some cases with the same publisher (the University of California Press, which can never find enough Denounce-Israel books to print), and misrepresent these as scholarship.
Yet DePaul University has restored its reputation as a serious center of academic learning by firing Finkelstein. Ben Gurion University's failure to do the same regarding Neve Gordon tells the world that IT is NOT a serious institution of academic excellence and integrity.Note: Articles listed under "Moonlighting: Non-Specialists 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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