Daniel Pipes is not Norman Finkelstein

By Vic Rosenthal

The older and farther removed from the academic world that I get, the more I am astonished by the irresponsibility, bias, and sheer ignorance that categorizes it.

Take Brandeis University (please).

Counting Albert Einstein as one of its founders and Abbie Hoffman, Angela Davis, and Jack Abramoff as alumni, Brandeis has

…incurred a sorry record when it comes to Israel in recent years – staging [the] “Voices of Palestine” exhibit, hiring [Natana] DeLong-Bas and [Khalil] Shikaki, granting an honorary degree to the anti-Zionist playwright Tony Kushner, appointing the muddled Prof. Shai Feldman (POL) to head the Crown Center, permitting an Islamist (Qumar-ul Huda) to serve as its Muslim chaplain and setting up the Brandeis-Al-Quds University study-abroad connection. — Daniel Pipes

Now Brandeis president Jehuda Reinharz has displayed his ignorance, bias, or both by calling both Pipes and Norman Finkelstein “weapons of mass destruction”. Poor Pipes is justifiably insulted (read his whole article here) by being lumped together with the disreputable Finkelstein, and irritated by Brandeis’ action in suspending Pipes’ planned appearance there.

Having read both Pipes and Finkelstein and heard Pipes speak, I must agree that Reinharz is far off-base. I do find the visceral negative response to Pipes in academic, left-wing, and Muslim circles to be interesting. The guy is a careful scholar, very competent in his field, and not at all a wild-eyed radical. He has never, as far as I know, written anything in praise of Baruch Goldstein or suggested forced transfer as a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I do expect that he votes Republican, but even that doesn’t justify the reception he receives.

I’m afraid that it’s simply his message, which often uncovers the “unclothed emperors” in the academic world, and which exposes radical Islam for the aggressive Jihadism that it is.

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One Response to “Daniel Pipes is not Norman Finkelstein”

  1. Shalom Freedman says:

    Reinharz outrageous behavior here, his either colossal ignorance or distorted values means that he is not fit to be the President not only of Brandeis but of any university. To compare an Israel hater, and Holocaust demeaner like Finkelstein with a first- rate defender of Israel and democratic values like Pipes is not simply outrageous but sickening.