To the Editor:
Allan Nadler’s powerful review of Judaism, Human Values, and the Jewish State, by Yeshayahu Leibowitz [Books in Review, November 1992], calls attention to yet another emperor’s nakedness. Mr. Nadler implicitly raises two questions.
1. If Leibowitz took contrary positions to those Israel-loathing ones that he so ferociously proclaims, would anyone pay attention to him?
2. Why did Harvard, of all presses, publish so tendentious and obviously sectarian a document?
The two questions add up to one answer: the man is a creation of his own politically-correct opinions. Saying what the right people want to have someone say, he gets a whole lot of publicity. But the fact is, as dogmatic and poorly argued as the book is, . . . the man at a seminar is still less able to argue cogently. I attended a session with him fifteen years ago, at which he sat in the middle of the room in a circle of American professors, talked for two hours without stopping or taking questions or exchanging so much as a hello with anyone present, and then, presumably talked out, just walked out—in anger. I never could figure out what that roomful of silent, astonished, but polite American academics could have done so to infuriate a man to whom no one had ever gotten to say a word. . . .
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