Thursday, May 28, 2009

Unsubtle Censorship

In my last post, I offered the opinion that stacking the deck, as much as it may conceal certain points of view, can't be categorized as actually censoring those points of view.

This, on the other hand, is a story about a man who called for true censorship.

A leading candidate to be the next director general of UNESCO — the acronym is worth spelling out here: the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization — has called for burning Israeli books.

As the BBC recounts,

Opponents of Mr Hosny's candidature have cited his response to a question in parliament in May 2008 from an opposition MP about whether Israeli books were held by the new library in Alexandria.

He said: "Burn these books; if there are any there, I will myself burn them in front of you."

Hosny, perhaps concerned that wanting to burn books might not be the ideal qualification for heading the UN's culture and education center that acts as a "clearinghouse ... for the dissemination and sharing of information and knowledge," has recently apologized for his remarks. (He apparently hasn't apologized for saying that "Israeli culture is an inhumane culture; it is an aggressive, racist, pretentious culture based on one simple principle: steal what does not belong to in order to then claim its appropriation.")

Apology notwithstanding, book burning is, of course, censorship of the worst kind. To read MuzzleWatch's critique of Hosny's remarks, click here. (No really... click it. Otherwise the joke doesn't make sense.)

1 comment:

  1. (No really... click it. Otherwise the joke doesn't make sense.)


    Really, folks- you have to click the link!


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