December 12, 2007

Let's start talking about the Saudi lobby

Time to stop talking about the Israel lobby and start talking about the dangerous and insidious sneaky Saudi lobby,which donates large amounts of money to American universities in order to build equity in pro-Islam anti-Israel think tanks. From Saudis Give Big to U.S. Colleges:

Some say the sheer size of Saudi donations to Middle East studies departments amounts to buying influence and creating bastions of noncritical pro-Islamic scholarship within academia. "There's a possibility these campuses aren't getting gifts, they're getting investments," said Clifford May, president of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.

There are 17 federally funded centers on American college campuses devoted solely to Middle Eastern studies and another 30 to 40 that do not receive federal aid, according to Amy Newhall, executive director of the Middle East Studies Association at the University of Arizona. Not counting several positions at Georgetown University, she estimated at least 10 chaired professorships currently funded by Saudis at major universities.

"With all the talk of the Israel lobby, no one talks about the Saudi lobby," said Winfield Myers, director of Campus Watch. "There is no counterweight to Saudi influence in American higher education."