Corked is a word that defines something special turning rotten. A wine that is flawed due to a damaged or broken cork. In this case, it is perhaps fitting that Oren Ben Dor chose UCC, or University College Cork, as the new site for the failed academic hate-fest from two years ago. The hate fest, the venom, the anti-Israel activism posing as academic thought, the deception, the rush to be top of the ‘Israel hating’ pile. This is what happens when academia is not preserved properly. When unwanted and unsavoury elements are allowed to infest and spoil the natural academic process. The proposed conference is effectively ‘corked’.http://david-collier.com/ben-dors-circus-hate/
What do you do when on the one hand you want to adhere to the strongest principles of free speech, but on the other believe that academia is being used for something illegitimate.
For two years, the organisers of the disgraceful Southampton conference have had the ability to rent the local hall, pull these activists together, and conduct this vile call for the destruction of Israel in private. This is not good enough for them.
Almost all the academics involved are activists. People who are apparently on a mission to bring about the end of the democratic state of Israel. These people, in the vast majority, see Israel as an Apartheid, Nazi-like state. The conference is seen by these people, as part of their activism.
Therefore, it is not the ‘in gathering’ of like-minded people that is important. It is not about the discussion, but rather how the output can best be utilised to further delegitimise Israel and strengthen their personal cause. They need this to be in a university because they must have the academic stamp of approval.
It is that stamp that I believe should be denied them. They have the right to be activists, they have the right to be wrong, they have the right to gather together many hate-minded, vicious and sinister people to create fiction, spread lies, distort history and attempt to pass on whatever nasty disease they have all caught. They just should not be permitted to do this as if it were a legitimate academic exercise.
I have worked on the list of academics. I have updated the list from Southampton, added new material and included the new speakers.
I have also created a table, which is available at the bottom of this article. I think the table highlights precisely why this conference is so troublesome. Almost every single person on the list is an anti-Israel activist.
Out of the 47 present, there are only two who sit on the other side of the fence. Professor Alan Johnson from BICOM and Professor Geoffrey Alderman. Neither had been on the cast list for the original conference at Southampton. They were added later to present some type of Zionist argument when the public outcry began. I imagine the same reasoning is taking place here. In other words they are here to oppose the conference, in their own way.
I believe the action is misplaced. As can be seen from the table below. The concentration of hatred is the best argument against the conference itself. It delegitimises its own position through its clear one sided nature. Their presence, however minimal, dilutes the visible concentration. Because their inclusion isn’t the intent of the organisers, it’s impact is self-defeating.
Additionally, if the academic stamp is the legitimising factor for the organisers, anything that further legitimise the illegitimate is self-defeating. Their presence allows the organiser to declare that the conference was balanced, that Zionists were present, however ridiculous such a statement may be. For these reasons, despite my respect for both these academics, and the work they do, I believe their choice to be in error.
The list of ‘academics’ is present here. There is a table underneath.
IMPORTANT: This is a complicated exercise, that crosses nations, continents and language barriers. I have done my best to ensure accuracy, but especially with academics who produce their work mainly in languages other than English, this is a difficult task to complete. If anyone can provide either corrections or *additions* then please do not hesitate to contact me. I apologise in advance for any errors.