[Marxism] Witch-hunt against critics of Israel has been going for nearly 30 years

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Aug 14 16:34:06 MDT 2014

NY Times, February 8, 1987
Professor in Zionism Affair Is Denied Tenure

A professor at the State University at Stony Brook, L.I., embroiled in 
controversy since he told students in 1983 that Zionism is a form of 
racism, has been denied tenure by the Chancellor of the State University.

In a two-page decision issued Jan. 30, two days before he resigned as 
Chancellor, Clifton R. Wharton Jr. rejected Professor Ernest F. Dube's 
appeal of an August 1985 decision by Stony Brook's president denying tenure.

Many students and faculty members have criticized the decision, saying 
it violates the principle of academic freedom. Four faculty committees 
had recommended that Professor Dube be granted tenure, a permanent 
teaching post at the university. Critics of the decision say that he was 
not forcing his opinions on his students, but was setting out topics for 

The chairman of the school's history department, Professor Joel 
Rosenthal, headed an executive committee to review charges that Dr. 
Dube's course ''Politics of Race'' was anti-Semitic. He said of the 
ruling, ''It seems we gave in to external influences.'' He called the 
Chancellor ''chicken'' for ''allowing extramural politics to be involved 
in a tenure decision.''

According to faculty members who have seen the decision, Professor Dube 
was informed that he would not be offered tenure at Stony Brook, but 
would be allowed to remain in the state university system if another 
campus offered him a ''continuing position.''

Mr. Wharton has refused to comment on the matter. But the Stony Brook 
president, Dr. John H. Marburger 3d, issued a statement praising the 
decision because it ''acknowledged the responsibility the school has to 
protect its faculty from inappropriate external influences.''

Mr. Dube, who has often denied his remarks were inappropriate, refused 
to comment on the decision. Chancellor Wharton's decision not to grant 
tenure to the South African-born professor, who has taught in the 
school's Africana Studies department since 1977, overruled the 
recommendations of four separate committees that have considered the 
case since 1985.

The president of the Graduate Student Organization at Stony Brook, Chris 
Vestudo, called the denial of tenure for Professor Dube ''outrageous,'' 
and said student leaders are ''prepared to stand behind the professor in 
whatever he decides to do, including whatever protests might be necessary.''

The controversy began in mid-1983, when a visiting Israeli professor 
complained in a letter to the administration that the linking of Zionism 
to racism in the class was ''sloganeering that is practiced by the 

A university senate investigation in August 1983 concluded that 
Professor Dube's course had not overstepped the bounds of academic 
freedom, unfurling a wave of criticism from Jewish groups in the area. 
Governor Cuomo condemned the teachings on Zionism as ''intellectually 

Joseph Topek, president of the Stony Brook chapter of Hillel, a national 
group of Jewish campus organizations, said he objected to Professor 
Dube's characterization of Zionism as ''one of the three forms of 
racism, along with Nazism and apartheid.'' But he said the Jewish 
community on campus ''did not want to see this matter politicized.''

The director of the Long Island chapter of the Anti-Defamation League, 
Carin Katz, said that the organization's role in the decision was ''to 
expose the anti-Semitism'' and ''whatever action taken by the university 
was their own.''

More information about the Marxism mailing list