RE: Another Example of the Radical Islam Memeplex

From: Lawrence DeBivort (
Date: Sun 15 Dec 2002 - 20:04:36 GMT

  • Next message: Lawrence DeBivort: "RE: Another "Example" of the Radical Islam Memeplex"

    Oh what a wonderful post, Joe!

    I asked you:
    > > So, who is behind the site??? Who is the
    > > director of MEMRI? Who is on their advisory board? Who on their Board?
    > > Who is staff director? Maybe I'm missing the part of their site that
    > > provides this information. Joe, can you point me to this information?
    > > You have piqued my curiosity.
    > >

    And this is your response:

    (It looks like you cut and paste this from the MEMRI site itself!)
    > The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) explores the
    > Middle East through the region's media. MEMRI bridges the
    > language gap which exists between the West and the Middle East,
    > providing timely translations of Arabic, Farsi, and Hebrew media,
    > as well as original analysis of political, ideological, intellectual,
    > social, cultural, and religious trends in the Middle East.
    > Founded in February 1998 to inform the debate over U.S. policy
    > in the Middle East, MEMRI is an independent, nonpartisan,
    > nonprofit, 501 (c)3 organization. MEMRI's headquarters is located
    > in Washington, DC with branch offices in Berlin, London, and
    > Jerusalem, where MEMRI also maintains its Media Center.
    > MEMRI research is translated to English, German, Hebrew,
    > Italian, French, Spanish, Turkish, and Russian.

    NOTHINGS about WHO is behind the site -- not a word!

    > I suppose they're kinda like Ibn Warraq in a way; certain that if
    > their identities were known to Radical Muslims, that the bullets
    > and bombs would be forthcoming for daring to translate for the
    > world what they are saying to each other.

    Sure, Joe. With offices in London, Berlin, and Jerusalem -- they are just so vulnerable. At least your friend Pipes doesn't hide his identity. Nor does his ubiquitous participation in any forum he is invited to seem to suggest that he fears for his life. You are grasping at straws to cover up your inability to state WHO is behind the MEMRI site, and the site's own conspicuous hiding of that information.

    > > I notice that you ignore my challenge to you to produce ANY complaints
    > > that have been made of my provision of references. If indeed you
    > > can't find any, a simple apology on your part will suffice. Not that
    > > I'm holding my breath. Your callousness about people I know who died
    > > in the WTC has not been forgotten by members of this list.
    > >
    > Most people complain about the inadequacy of the present rather than
    > the lack of the absent. I noticed that, despite my request, you did not
    > provide me with any credible academic references you have previously
    > posted/cited. I can not only not find complaints about your
    > references; I
    > can't find your references.

    Well, gosh, YOU are the one who said that people had complained about my references, so I would think that you might be able to rise to the challenge of actually providing an instance in which that has happened. Instead, you are trying to divert attention from your empty accusation to my having to copy of citations of primary sources that I HAVE provided! But then, Joe, it would seem you have a VERY short term and 'convenient' memory. You have merely to go back to the very interesting discussion that several of us had on the entry of the Allies into Damascus to see primary source citations aplenty, from myself, and from others on this list who know the difference between a primary sources and mere punditry or anonymous posting. And then, of course, there is the more recent listing of sources that help explore the question of 'what happened' to the Islamic world....

    So, again, Joe: please provide us with ANY example of where anyone on this list has criticised my references. It is YOUR accusation, made to everyone on the list, so now you must provide some evidence to back it up, or honor should require you to retract the accusation, not try and divert attention with red herrings

    > And you have a funny way of honoring your dead friends - by denying
    > the deadly ubiquity of the violent ideological totalitarianism that
    > motivated their murderers. THAT is my definition of callous. See? I
    > can ad hominem right back at you. But I would prefer to stick to the
    > subject at hand - which is not about the credibility of MEMRI or its
    > supporters, but about the vicious memeplex being spouted over the
    > Mideast airwaves, and what we can figure out about it.

    Actually, Joe, the 'debate' is about YOUR credibility, more than anything else. And your credibility dpends heavily on that of your sources, given your dependence on them to argue your case for you. So MEMRI's credibility is fair game here, whether you like it or not. You have made this bed, and now you must, like it or not, lie in it.

    The best way of honoring anyone is by honoring the truth. Ranting will not bring any of them back, nor honor them. Understanding why things happen, and working to create conditoons in which they won't happen again, is the best way to honor people who have wrongfully died, whoever they are.

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