“Remember the solidarity shown to Palestine here and everywhere… and remember also that there is a cause to which many people have committed themselves, difficulties and terrible obstacles notwithstanding. Why? Because it is a just cause, a noble ideal, a moral quest for equality and human rights.”

    -Prof. Edward W. Said (1935-2003)

Naseer H. Aruri



31 August 1999

The Boston Globe
Boston, MA

Dear Madam/Sir:

In his scurrilous attack against Professor Edward Said (“Professor Said’s Untrue Story,” op-ed, August 30), Jeff Jacoby joins a chorus of right-wing Likudists bent not only on smearing Professor Said, but also, on trying to undermine the internationally-guaranteed rights of the Palestinian people, which Edward Said has come to symbolize. The right of return, which is guaranteed by the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 (III), Security Council Resolution 237, and countless other instruments are the real target of this campaign, spearheaded by something called the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and by the magazine COMMENTARY, the voice of the American Jewish Committee. Ironically, Jacoby has not bothered to scrutinize their standards of truth and accuracy.

The right of return will be on top of the agenda of the approaching final status negotiations of the Oslo process. That issue has been raised not only by Palestinians, most of those 7 million are classified as refugees but also by revisionist Israeli historians whose documentation of Israel’s ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians in 1948 is beginning to penetrate through the thick walls of self-censorship practiced by much of the U.S media.

Jacoby’s dissemination of the “research” funded by the Los Angeles-based Miliken family foundation is not surprising, given a consistent pattern of anti-Palestinian, anti-Muslim writing ever since he joined the GLOBE.

Rarely does one find a match to such writing even in the mainstream Israeli newspapers. A review of Jacoby’s op-eds for 1998/99 demonstrates this pattern. Recalling only one of his recent diatribes appearing on 7/12/99, he condemned President Clinton-recognized as the most pro-Israeli President to date- for having answered a question at a press conference saying that the Palestinians should be free to live wherever they want to live.

Even the casual reader of the GLOBE can see that Jacoby has a mission. It is time, however, that the fair standards of journalism, which Jacoby has sanctimoniously preached be made applicable to him. Otherwise, columnists and propagandists will be the same.


Naseer H. Aruri


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