11 December 2006

Tilting at Imaginary Windmills

The whole tale begins here:

"Being president doesn't give one the prerogative to bend the facts to reach a prescribed reality," said Kenneth Stein, the first executive director of the Carter Center. The Emory University professor, who teaches Middle Eastern history and political science, said he picked up a copy of Carter's latest book, "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid" last week. After reading it, he decided to resign.

"President Carter's book on the Middle East, a title too inflammatory to even print, is not based on unvarnished analysis; it is replete with factual errors, copied materials not cited, superficialities, glaring omissions, and simply invented segments," Stein wrote. "Aside from the one-sided nature of the book, meant to provoke, there are recollections cited from meetings where I was the third person in the room, and my notes of those meetings show little similarity to points claimed in the book."
Then we get this:

"It appears that at least two maps that came out of the Carter book were or are very closely similar, or unusually similar, to maps that were produced and published in Dennis Ross' book 'The Missing Peace,' " Stein said. That book, published in 2004, is also about the search for peace in the Middle East. "This could be incredibly coincidental, or it could not," Stein said. "But it goes to the way history books should be written, and the way citations should be made when material is borrowed."
Now we've elevated the charade to flat-out lying.

CLIFT: You're obviously aware of your main critic, Mr. Stein, who used to be with the Carter Center.

CARTER: Thirteen years ago! He hasn't been associated with the Carter Center for 13 years.

When we were originally sent Professor Stein's letter explaining his resignation from the Carter Center last week, I looked Professor Stein up on the Carter Center's site. Professor Stein's Carter Center page is here, describing Professor Stein as the Carter Center fellow for Middle East affairs since 1983."
It's sad to see a Navy man going down with the ship.

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