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To: Members of the Association of University Teachers (UK)
From: Jeff Weintraub, University of Pennsylvania, USA
On behalf of over 4,800 signers of the petition "Oppose the Blacklist of Israeli Academics"

As today's special Council meeting of the Association of University Teachers prepares to reconsider the April 22, 2005 decision to institute a blacklist of Israeli academics (not just a "boycott" of their universities), I would like to point out that this decision has been publicly condemned by several major US academic associations, including the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), the Middle East Studies Association (MESA), the American Political Science Association (APSA), the New York Academy of Sciences, and the National Academy of Sciences. The American Historical Association (AHA) and the Organization of American Historians (OAH) are considering similar actions.

Our petition calling on other scholarly and academic associations to do likewise has received over 4,800 signatures from around the world, including such prominent academics and intellectuals as Richard Rorty, Robert Bellah, Edward Skidelsky, Steven Lukes, Ian Buruma, Deborah Lipstadt, Michael Walzer, Tony Judt, Todd Gitlin, Leon Wieseltier, Margaret Levi (President of the APSA), Ira Katznelson (President-Elect of the APSA), Cynthia Fuchs Epstein (President-Elect of the American Sociological Association), Juan Cole (President-Elect of MESA), Baruch Kimmerling, Joyce Appleby, Harold Bloom, David Brion Davis, Charles Maier, Robert Putnam, John Lewis Gaddis, Jeremy Waldron, Jean Bethke Elshtain, Philip Pettit, Herbert Kelman, Rogers Brubaker, Alan Wolfe, Gunther Teubner, and Alessandro Pizzorno (view current signatures). These responses demonstrate a recognition that the the issues at stake are not limited to Britain and Israel, but involve a threat to fundamental principles of academic and intellectual freedom everywhere.

We therefore urgently call on the Association of University Teachers to repeal the academic blacklist resolutions approved at the April 22 AUT Council meeting and to reject the larger agenda behind them, and we strongly support those AUT members who are working toward this end. Those of you who receive this message are urged to share it with other AUT members.

Jeff Weintraub


University of Pennsylvania
Depts. of Political Science and Sociology
(Visiting Faculty)


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