Academics and Israel


Sir, – Another lecture by high-minded scholars pontificating on the wicked, expansionist Israeli regime (November 4th). They say they will boycott Israeli academic institutions – but will co-operate with individual Israeli academics.

How is this to be managed? Do they carry out prior checks on said academics before co-operating with them, to ensure they are “sound on the Palestinian question”?

Do they continue to be employed by their own institutions, even if they are “collaborating” with Israeli colleges? I’ll bet Israeli universities are quaking.

Do these high-minded individuals not have better things to do, like improving the standing of their own institutions in world rankings? – Yours, etc,



Co Down.

Sir, – Perhaps the academics who have decided to withdraw co-operation with Israeli universities should use a bigger net.

Then they might refuse to work with most Middle Eastern universities whose regimes constantly persecute minorities.

They might then act similarly with the universities of the US and Nato countries whose political interference has led to the displacement and suffering of many minorities in that region.

Perhaps the plight of the Falun Gong and the Uighirs might give also give rise to further bans on academic relations with institutions in China.

Then they might look to home, to the country which pays their wages, and notice the difficulties of Travellers and political refugees in obtaining equal rights in the field of education.

That such an unbalanced letter should be signed and published, as if a testament to the truth, simply illuminates a particular prejudice. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 24.