Who Is the ‘Imperialist Tool’ in the Middle East?
by Barry Rubin:
Let’s examine claims from the radical academia currently hegemonic in North America and Europe. What is fascinating is that a well-informed observer can easily demolish such claims. That’s precisely why such people are not being trained today and those who do exist must be discredited or ignored to keep students (and the general public) relatively ignorant.
To paraphrase George Santayana’s famous statement, those who fail to learn from history make fun of those who do.
I know that the situation has become far worse in recent years, having vivid memories of how my two main Middle East studies professors — both Arabs, both anti-Israel, and one of them a self-professed Marxist — had contempt for Edward Said and the then new, radical approach to the subject. At one graduate seminar, the students — every single one of them hostile to Israel but not, as today is often the case, toward America — literally broke up in laughter pointing out the fallacies in Said’s Orientalism. Today, no one would dare talk that way, it would be almost heresy.
Let me now take a single example of the radical approach so common today and briefly explain how off-base it is. I won’t provide detailed documentation here but could easily do so.
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