Over 11,300 Scholars FromAcross Political Spectrum From Nearly 1000 Campuses Around The World Add Names to Statement Expressing Outrage at British University and College Vote to Promote Academic Boycott of Israel: 33 Nobel Laureates and 59 University Pres

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Revised September 25, 2007
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Revised September 8, 2007
Revised August 16, 2007
Revised August 11, 2007
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Media Contacts:

Dr. Edward S. Beck, President,
Scholars for Peace in the Middle East

Phone: 717.576.5038

Email: [email protected]

Daniel Tarman, Media Advisor to SPME

Phone: 310.463.1902

Email: [email protected]

Global Backlash Grows in Scope and Strength as 33 Nobel Laureates, 59University and Foundation Presidents Declare in Statement: “We Will Regard Ourselves as Israeli Academics and Decline to Participate in any Activity from which Israeli Academics are Excluded”

July 30 2007 (New York City): The global backlash against the recent vote by the British University and Colleges Union (“UCU”) to promote a boycott of Israeli academics and institutions grew in scope and strength today as Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (“SPME”) announced that over 10,000 academics from nearly every level of academia, 33 Nobel Laureates, 59 university and foundation presidents have signed a public declaration demanding that the boycott effort be immediately overturned. SPME said it will deliver to the UCU the Statement as an expression of outrage against the boycott, and as an act of solidarity with their Israeli academic colleagues.

“Today more than 11,000 of the world’s leading scholars speak together with one voice to demand academic freedom for all scholars, and to declare that we are all Israeli academics for purposes of any academic boycott. We will regard ourselves as Israeli academics and decline to participate in any activity from which Israeli academics are excluded,” said Professor Steven Weinberg, University of Texas, Austin, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics.

Added Dr. Edward Beck, President of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and Professor of Psychology, Walden University: “The decision by the UCU to promote a boycott is a disgraceful anti-intellectual act that replaces factual discourse with a one-sided political agenda, and turns morality and the notion of freedom on their head. It says more about the boycott proponents than those to be boycotted. All of those who believe in academic freedom must speak forcefully to prevent a minority of extremists in the UCU to politicize, control and shut down the free exchange of ideas, where any group, whether based upon religion or national origin is singled out for exclusion. In moving this boycott proposal forward, members of the UCU are, in fact, separating themselves from the international academic community, and deeply undermining their credibility in the process.”

Added Judea Pearl, Professor of Computer Science at UCLA and President of the Daniel Pearl Foundation: “For those of us who are actively engaged in peace-building programs in the Middle East, the UCU vote came as a stab in the back to the efforts in which we have invested so much energy and hope.

I find it hard to understand how my academic colleagues in the UK could stand by and let a handful of anti-coexistence radicals hijack their Union and stain their professional reputation by trampling on academic freedom, one of the most sacred tenets of free societies.”

Stated Alan Dershowitz, Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, who drafted the SPME statement with Professor Weinberg and Dr. Beck: “Never before in modern history have so many academics from such diverse backgrounds been so united in condemning an attack an academic freedom. Beyond the sheer numbers of academics who have joined in solidarity with their Israeli colleagues, the signatories are a cross-section of many of the most respected scholars in the world. The message of the signatories is crystal clear: should the UCU go forward with a boycott of Israeli academics and institutions, the end result will be a self-inflicted wound on British academia.”

The leaders of SPME will continue to raise awareness and condemnation of the vote to promote a boycott by the UCU until it is overturned and the fundamental principles of freedom are restored to British academia. SPME will also monitor any instance where Israeli academics are excluded should any boycott take effect, and will implement the principles of the SPME Statement accordingly.

The full text of the SPME Statement reads: “We are academics, scholars, researchers and professionals of differing religious and political perspectives. We all agree that singling out Israelis for an academic boycott is wrong. To show our solidarity with our Israeli academics in this matter, we, the undersigned, hereby declare ourselves to be Israeli academics for purposes of any academic boycott. We will regard ourselves as Israeli academics and decline to participate in any activity from which Israeli academics are excluded.”

The complete list of signatories to the Statement can be found at:


The signatories of the SPME Statement include the following Nobel Prize winners, university and foundation presidents, and leading scholars:

Alexei Alexeyevich Abrikosov, Nobel Prize—Physics,
Distinguished Scientist
Argonne National Laboratory, USA

Kenneth Arrow, Nobel Prize—Economics
Stanford University

David Baltimore, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
Past President,
California Institute of Technology

Claude Cohen-Tannoudji, Nobel Prize—Physics
Laboratoire de Physique de L’Ecole Normale Superiere
Paris, France

Robert F. Engle, Nobel Prize—Economics
New York University

Jerome Friedman, Nobel Prize—Physics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Donald A. Glaser, Nobel Prize—Physics
University of California at Berkeley

Sheldon Lee Glashow, Nobel Prize—Physics
Boston University

Clive W.J. Granger, Nobel Prize—Economics
University of California, San Diego

David Gross, Nobel Prize—Physics
Director, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics
Frederick W. Gluck Chair in Theoretical Physics
University of California at Santa Barbara

Herbert A. Hauptman, Nobel Prize—Chemistry
Medical Foundation of Buffalo

James J. Heckman, Nobel Prize—Economics
University of Chicago

Alan Heeger, Nobel Prize—Chemistry
University of California-Santa Barbara

Dudley R. Herschbach, Nobel Prize Chemistry
Harvard University

Avram Hershko, Nobel Prize—Chemistry
Distinguished Professor at the Unit of Biochemistry
Rappaport Faculty of Medicine

Roald Hoffmann, Nobel Prize—Chemistry
Frant H. T. Rhodes Professor of Humane Letters
Cornell University

Tim Hunt, Nobel Prize— Physiology/Medicine
Cell Cycle Control Laboratory
London Research Institute
Clare Hall Laboratories

Elfriede Jelinck, Nobel Prize—Literature

Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize—Economics
Professor of Psychology
Princeton University

Eric R. Kandel, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
University Professor
Columbia University

Walter Kohn, Nobel Prize—Physics
University of California-Santa Barbara

Arthur Kornberg, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
Emeritus Pfeiffer Merner Professor of Biochemistry
Stanford University School of Medicine

Roger Kornberg, Nobel Prize—Chemistry
Professor of Structural Biology
Stanford University

Anthony Leggett, Nobel Prize-Physics
John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Chair and
Center for Advanced Study Professor of Physics
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Leon Lederman, Nobel Prize—Physics
Fermi National Accelator Laboratory
University of Chicago

Marshall W. Nirenberg, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
Biochemical Genetics
National Institutes of Health

David Politzer, Nobel Prize—Physics
California Institute of Technology

Richard J. Roberts, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
New England Biolabs

Andrew V. Schally, Nobel Prize—Physiology/Medicine
Miller School of Medicine
University of Miami

Harold Varmus, Nobel Prize Physiology/Medicine
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Steven Weinberg, Nobel Prize—Physics
Josey Regental Professor of Science
University of Texas, Austin

Elie Wiesel, Nobel Peace Prize
Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities
Boston University

Frank Wilczek, Nobel Prize—Physics
Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Lauren J. Anderson
Pacific Lutheran University

Lawrence S. Bacow
Tufts University

Esther Barazzone
Chatham University

Henry S. Bienen
Northwestern University

Leon Botstein
Bard College

William R. Brody
Johns Hopkins University

Hank Brown
University of Colorado

Robert Brown
Boston University

Tom Buchanan
University of Wyoming

Nancy Cantor
Chancellor and President
Syracuse University

Robert Carothers
University of Rhode Island

Gerhard Casper
President Emeritus
Stanford University

Jean-Lou Chameau
California Institute of Technology

David Clary
Oxford University

Saul B. Cohen

President Emeritus
Queens College
City University of New York

Jared Cohon
Carnegie-Mellon University

Scott Cowen
Tulane University

Michael Crow
Arizona State University

Talbot “Sandy” D’Alemberte
President Emeritus and Professor
Florida State University

Gail Dinter-Gottlieb
President and Vice Chancellor
Arcadia University

James Doti
Chapman University

Robert C. Dynes
University of California

Allen K. Easley
President and Dean
William Mitchell College of Law

Alfred Ebenbauer (1945-2007)
Former Rector
University of Vienna

Mark Emmert
University of Washington

Daniel Mark Fogel
University of Vermont

Carol Garrison
University of Alabama

Alice P. Gast
Lehigh University

Amy Guttman
University of Pennsylvania

Ann Weaver Hart
Temple University

John L. Hennessy
Stanford University

Richard Herman
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Susan Hockfield

Richard M. Joel
Yeshiva University

Shirley Strum Kenny
Stony Brook University
State University of New York

Steven Knapp
George Washington University

Univ. Prof Dr. Helmut Konrad
Former Rector
University of Graz
Graz Austria

Ronald D. Liebowitz
Middlebury College

David McClain
University of Hawaii System

Joseph M. McShane, SJ
Fordham University

James Moeser
University of North Carolina

C.D. Mote Jr.
University of Maryland

Ross Paul
University of Windsor

G. David Pollick
Birmingham Southern College

Rajendra Prasad
Jawaharlal Nehru University
New Delhi, India

Stuart Rabinowitz
Hofstra University

Jehuda Reinharz
Brandeis University

Richard L. Rubenstein
President Emeritus and Distinguished Professor of Religion
University of Bridgeport

Cecil Samuelson
Brigham Young University

Wolfgang Schütz
Medical University of Vienna

Beheruz N. Sethna
Professor & President
University of West Georgia

Donna E. Shalala
University of Miami

Robert N. Shelton
University of Arizona

Lee Shulman
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

Ralph Snyderman
Chancellor Emeritus
Duke University

Graham Spanier
Penn State University

Stephen Joel Trachtenberg
George Washington University

Leslie Wagner
University of Derby, UK

Kevin Wildes, S.J.
Loyola University
New Orleans

Robert E. Witt
University of Alabama

Henry T. Yang
University of California-Santa Barbara

Mark G. Yudof
University of Texas

Daniel Zajfman
President and Professor of Physics
Weizmann Institute of Science

Alan Dershowitz
Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law
Harvard University

Dirac Medal
Ancell Professor of Physics
Brandeis University

Paul Appelbaum
Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Psychiatry, Medicine & Law
Columbia University

Edward S. Beck
President, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East
Laureate Professor, School of Psychology
Walden University

John R. Cohn
Professor of Medicine
Thomas Jefferson University

Ruth Lichtenberg-Contreras
Vienna Natural History Museum
University of Vienna

Stanley Dubinsky
Associate Dean of the Graduate School
University of South Carolina

Awi Federgruen,
Charles E. Exley Professor of Management;
Chair of Decision, Risk and Operations Division,
Columbia University Business School

Lisbeth S. Fried
Visiting Scholar
Frankel Center for Judaic Studies and the
Department of Near Eastern Studies
University of Michigan

Judith S. Jacobson
Associate Professor
Mailman Schoolof Public Health
Columbia University

Richard L. Lubman
Associate Professor Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
University of Southern California School of Medicine

Edward H. Kaplan
William N. and Marie A. Beach Professor of Management Sciences,
Professor of Public Health, and Professor of Engineering
Yale University

Ed Morgan
Law Professor
University of Toronto

Joel Pachter
Professor of Pharmacology
University of Connecticut Health Center

Judea Pearl
Professor Computer Science
University of California- Los Angeles (UCLA)
Daniel Pearl Foundation

Edgar Pick
Director, the Julius Friedrich Cohnheim – Minerva Center
for Phagocyte Research
Head, the Ela Kodesz Institute of Host Defense
against Infectious Diseases
Incumbent, the Roberts-Guthman Chair in
Sackler School of Medicine
Tel Aviv University

Elihu D. Richter
Center for Genocide Studies
Hebrew University-Hadassah, School of Public Health and Community Medicine

Harvey A. Risch
Professor, Chronic Disease Epidemiology
Yale University School of Public Health

Bruce Rubenstein
Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry
New York University School of Medicine

Marius Usher
Professor of Cognitive Psychology |
Birkbeck, University of London

Jeffrey Wielgus
Research Associate, Department of Life Sciences
University of British Columbia

Vladimir Zakharov
Dirac Medal in Theoretical Physics
Regent Professor of Mathematics
University of Arizona

About SPME

Scholars for Peace in the Middle East is an independent, faculty-driven, not-for-profit [501 © (3)], “big-tent” grassroots community of scholars with over 19,000 academics and professional members receiving our SPME Faculty Forum on nearly 1000 campuses worldwide. Nearly 30 of these campuses now have their own chapters in North America and Europe.

The mission of SPME is to preserve academic freedom, and to promote peace in the Middle East consistent both with Israel’s right to exist as a sovereign Jewish state within safe and secure borders, and able to recognize the legitimate rights and peaceful aspirations of her neighbors.

The official registration and financial information of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, Inc. may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State by calling toll-free, with Pennsylvania, 1-800-732-0999 or calling (717) 783-1720 outside of Pennsylvania.



Over 11,300 Scholars FromAcross Political Spectrum From Nearly 1000 Campuses Around The World Add Names to Statement Expressing Outrage at British University and College Vote to Promote Academic Boycott of Israel: 33 Nobel Laureates and 59 University Pres

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