We last left J. Lorand Matory, the professor who "trembles with fear" at the power of the Israel Lobby, in this report by Hillel Stavis that saw Stavis attending a lecture by the good professor, and reacting when Matory spoke about Stavis to his face (unbeknownst to Matory, who didn't know what Stavis looked like at the time): Confrontation at Harvard: Defa-Matory and Out to Lunch. The post contains audio.
Professor Matory couldn't be so very fearful, however, as he's back at it again with a lengthy and rambling piece in the Harvard Crimson, What Do Critics of Israel Have to Fear?, in which he mentions Stavis again:
...Two of the three major local bookstores have participated in this censorship process. I have mentioned Harvard Book Store's disinvitation of Finkelstein. In 2002, Hillel Stavis, owner of the now-defunct Wordsworth bookstore in Harvard Square, played a prominent role in a highly damaging donor boycott of public radio station WBUR, on the grounds that it allegedly broadcast pro-Palestinian points of view too freely. Following my December 2007 lecture at Harvard Law School about the context of my FAS motion, in which I referred to Stavis as having "led" the boycott, he screamed at me from the audience and threatened to sue me...
In response, Stavis has written the following to the Crimson:
Apparently, the subject of Jews and Israel has taken over the cranium of Professor J. Lorand Matory. It would seem that his area of expertise in the field of African Anthropology has taken a back seat to his obsession with Israel's alleged "crimes". Not content with misrepresenting and slandering me at a Center for Middle Eastern Studies talk he gave at the Law School last December ("What's Troubling about Zionism: An African-American Perspective"), Professor Matory decided recently to compound his original venality by publishing yet another personal attack (I was not alone as the object of his screed) in The Crimson (June 12th, 2008 - "What Do Critics of Israel Have to Fear?").
I had never met nor laid eyes on Mr. Matory when I decided to attend his December "lecture". To my surprise, he launched into a personal rant against me and my decision to suspend my advertising on WBUR, the local NPR affiliate. I was sitting less than 3 feet from the professor as he looked at me, not knowing who I was, and proceeded to hurl insults at me for the apparent mortal sin of choosing which non-profit organizations to contribute to. Obviously, the Israel-obsessed professor didn't expect the object of his derision to be sitting next to him. His shock was so great that, in my opinion, his first defensive reaction was to hurl even more invectives my way. During the Q and A I identified myself - to Professor Matory's chagrin - and disabused him of his misrepresentations of fact. I also asked him to supply me with a list of the non-profit groups he contributed to so that I might vet them for eventual approval.
Contrary to the shocked Professor's assertion that I "screamed at him", I laid out the facts of the case calmly and accurately. I informed him that I had led no boycott and my decision was a personal one, arising out of NPR's clearly documented history of imbalance when dealing with the Israel-Arab conflict. Reminding him that NPR is obligated, under Federal Law, to report with fairness and balance, I cited numerous examples in which that requirement had been violated. Indeed, NPR was so roundly criticized for its coverage of the Arab Israeli conflict, that in 2003, its president, Kevin Klose, aided by an expensive Washington PR firm and WBUR's then director, Jane Christo, appeared before an audience of hundreds of people, but failed to provide credible responses to scores of documented instances of bias and factual errors.
Given the amount of time Professor Matory spends denigrating and misrepresenting Israel, perhaps he should shift his efforts to the The Center for Middle Eastern Studies. From his obsession, it is now clear that his spearheading the drive to oust former President Summers arose not from any ill-chosen comments on women in the sciences, but primarily from President Summers' opposition to the divestment- from- Israel campaign led by Mr. Matory. Professor Matory had his knives out for Larry Summers the minute he detected support for Israel. The perverse use of professorial tenure to launch personal attacks on anyone who dares to engage in legitimate criticism is a blight on Harvard's good name.