Monday, November 23, 2009

I am not a monster, damn it

So I am around MESA (the Middle East Studies Association) convention here in Boston, as my talk (at Harvard Law School) is not until tonight. So I enter this hall yesterday to attend a panel dealing with Lebanon. First, a dear colleague asks me not to criticize the presentation of one of the speakers because she is her student. Then, another speaker comes to the podium and says to the audience: "I am sorry but I feel very nervous because I see Dr. As`ad AbuKhalil in the audience and I am afraid that he would be critical of my presentation on his blog." I felt bad. I am not like that. And I am particularly sensitive to people working on their PhDs or are early in their careers,. I can be, politically speaking, mean and nasty but that is directed at the people who deserve it, I believe. Of course, I may add: just dont mess with Palestine and the Palestinians.