Letters to the Editor

Jemmali lacks balanced, unbiased argument; concern for all civilians in conflict necessary

Mohamed S. Jemmali’s letter to the Daily Emerald on Jan. 12 (“Approach freedom of speech with care”) is a classic case of Orwellian logic.

In “Animal Farm,” all animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others. According to Jemmali, freedom of speech is guaranteed to everybody, but only if he approves of what those people are saying. Because he is on the side of the Palestinians in the war that is currently raging in the Middle East, it is fine for the supporters of the Palestinians to rally, but a counter-protest by supporters of Israel is not permitted.

Jemmali goes on to talk about the number of Palestinians who have been killed in the last two weeks and emphasizes that many of them were children. However, he conveniently neglected to mention that Hamas purposely establishes bases in residential neighborhoods and uses civilians as shields to increase the number of civilian and child casualties and thereby get sympathy from the rest of the world. How else does one explain that Hamas has turned the Shifa Hospital in Gaza into its headquarters? How can you explain that Hamas is firing mortar rounds from the rooftops of civilians’ houses? How do you explain why Hamas took over a U.N. School?

Dr. Jemmali states that he “… shouldn’t tell people which side is right or wrong,” yet he presents only one very slanted and biased side to his argument. I believe that everybody involved in the conflict is concerned that there are so many civilian losses, but when the enemy has pledged to annihilate you and is hiding among civilians while attacking you, civilians will be killed.

Finally, Jemmali seems to excuse the Muslim extremists for their actions that occurred on Sept. 11, 2001, because the extremists disagreed with our Middle East policy. There are a lot of things in this world that I disagree with, but I don’t slaughter 3,000 people. It is very difficult to believe that the author of the letter that I am responding to is indeed a faculty member at the University. His arguments are twisted and nonsensical and present only one extremely biased side of the situation. Maybe it’s true that the University is spending too much money on athletics, as many people have recently opined. That might explain the hiring of such an unqualified professor.

Dave Taub Eugene, Ore.

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