The Corner

Tvi & Usat

Looks like USA Today has been duped by professors at the University of Michigan. The paper put out an editorial today criticizing HR 3077, the bill that would reform our system of subsidies to Middle East studies, and other area studies programs. The editorial holds up the program at the University of Michigan as a prime example of the way that federally subsidized Middle East Studies centers are helping the war on terror. Trouble is, the University of Michigan program is famous as a leader of the boycott of scholarships that send students to work for national security agencies. Michigan has received plenty of publicity for its refusal to cooperate with Washington on programs that would have actually helped filled the gaps in Arabic expertise in our intelligence agencies. “We didn’t want our students to be known as spies in training,” explained one of Michigan’s professors of Arabic. USA Today was kind enough to let me write a counterpoint opinion piece on this issue, and for that I am grateful. But they never showed me the text of their own editorial, which is remarkable for holding up one of the chief boycotting departments in the country as a model of cooperation with the government. Martin Kramer has more on the duping of USA Today at his weblog, Sandstorm.


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