Friday, June 03, 2016

When a bigot vouches for the credibility of Bernard Lewis

"An ardent historian of the Middle East, Bernard published his book The Middle East and the West in 1964. It was translated into Arabic by the Muslim Brotherhood. The translator wrote in the preface: “I don’t know who this person is but one thing is clear. He is, from our point of view, either a candid friend or an honest enemy and in any case one who disdains to distort the truth.”"  I don't know what "an ardent historian" means, but leave that alone.  This anecdote has been told by Bernard Lewis, among many fibs that he has been telling about himself over the years. When did the Muslim Brotherhood translate his book, and who was that person who said that about him? Bernard Lewis with those anecdotes is like Ribbentrop in Nuremberg when he pleaded with the court that "his best friends are Jewish".  Bernard Lewis also seems to imply that the translation of his books into Arabic is a validation of his thesis not knowing that books by Israelis and Zionists and even by Jean Sasson are translated quickly into Arabic.  Bernard Lewis is desperate to dispel the impression that the natives are fully aware of his biases and political hostility so he resorts to fibs to lend himself some credibility. He reminds me of Bill O'Reilly when he invites a Democratic fool to tell him how fair and neutral he is.  Lastly, since when has the Muslim Brotherhood become an authority on historiography?