May 11, 2013

The Real Noam Chomsky? II

Sheesh! Where does Noam Chomsky stand on boycotting Israel?  I just can't keep up with him.  One of my co-bloggers, Gabriel Ash, wrote a piece back in 2009 taking Chomsky to task for bad reasoning over his opposition to BDS.  More recently, last year, I wrote a piece expressing surprise that Chomsky was supporting BDS.  And I remember when Chomsky was barred from visiting the West Bank and/or Gaza and thereby preventing from addressing academics there, Chomsky said how the Israeli authorities seemed to take umbrage at him not addressing Israeli academic institutions.  He said then (though I can't remember when exactly) that he had no objection to addressing Israeli academic institutions.

Well now, according to The Guardian, it turns out that Chomsky was one of many academics who persuaded Stephen Hawking to blank the Shimon Peres shindig:

Noam Chomsky was among 20 academics who privately lobbied Professor Stephen Hawking to boycott a major Israeli conference, it has emerged.
Chomsky, a US professor and well-known supporter of the Palestinian cause, joined British academics from the universities of Cambridge, London, Leeds, Southampton, Warwick, Newcastle, York and the Open University to tell Hawking they were "surprised and deeply disappointed" that he had accepted the invitation to speak at next month's presidential conference in Jerusalem, which will chaired by Shimon Peres and attended by Tony Blair and Bill Clinton.
Hawking pulled out this week in protest at Israel's treatment of Palestinians, in the wake of receiving the letter and soundings from Palestinian colleagues. The 71-year-old theoretical physicist's decision has been warmly welcomed by Palestinian academics, with one describing it as "of cosmic proportions", but was attacked in Israel.
"Cosmic proportions" I wish I thought of that.

But look what this "liberal (read zionist) academic" had to say:
On Friday the liberal academic David Newman, dean of the faculty of humanities and social sciences at Ben Gurion University in Israel, warned that an academic boycott "just destroys one of the very few spaces left where Israelis and Palestinians actually do come together".

If that's the case, that people in the same country cannot come together based on their ethnicity then that is a clear admission that Israel is indeed an apartheid state and boycott, divestment and sanctions is the most appropriate tactic against it.

Anyway, welcome aboard Noam Chomsky.  Stick around!

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