Letters to the Editor: May 2010

The Vienna Review welcomes letters from its readers.

To the Editor, 

I would like to thank you for publishing my letter  to your newspaper but I would like to ask why the  sentences below were not included:

“In February of last year, while the Palestinians in Gaza were still mourning their dead, Blair received the Dan David prize from Tel Aviv University as the ‘laureate for the present time dimension in the field of leadership’.  The citation praised him for his ‘exceptional intelligence and foresight, and moral courage and leadership’.  The prize amounted to $1,000,000…”

Paula Abrams-Hourani
1070 Vienna

 

The Author Replies,

Letters to the editor, by necessity, are subject to editing for conciseness and for space. The passage was beside your core thesis and, as the topic was Tony Blair and the EU, not Israel/Palestine, we felt it acceptable to omit. To reply to the anecdote, Mr. Blair does not choose the benefactors of his accolade, and the $1,000,000 prize was donated to Blair’s Faith Foundation (with 10% to doctoral scholarships), and did not simply end up in Mr. Blair’s pocket, so the negative connotation of the passage regarding the prize proves unfounded. Furthermore, the point of the passage alludes to – in my interpretation – to Tel Aviv University’s decision being associated with the suffering of Gazans, and therefore illegitimate. While a valid opinion, I feel it distorts the point academic praise.

Justin McCauley

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