500 academics, students sign letter protesting Israel's refusal to grant Noam Chomsky entry
The letter reads: Under democracy, we do not silence voices that express an opinion which is different than the dominant one.
500 academics, students, and intellectuals have signed a letter addressed to Interior Minister Eli Yishai, protesting the Ministry's decision to refuse entry to linguist Noam Chomsky into
Chomsky, who aligns himself with the radical left, had been scheduled to lecture at
"We are protesting the humiliating way in which the Israeli government treated a citizen who asked to enter its territory. We are also protesting the harm and disrespect to democracy your ministry and the Israeli government have caused," the letter read.
Among the signatories of the letter are Israeli philosophers Professor Avishai Margalit and Professor Asa Kasher, as well as Professor Nuritz Geretz, Professor Yehuda Shenhav, Dr. Anat Matar, and poet Aharon Shabtai.
"Refusing entry to a person whose political views may not be acceptable to the one doing the refusing is a serious harm to democracy. One of the basic principles of democracy can be defined simply: Under democracy, we do not silence voices that express an opinion which is different than the dominant one – not in science, and of course not in society and in politics," the letter read.
Professor Asa Kasher told Haaretz that "I have known Chomsky for many years. I am very familiar with his opinions, his books in linguistics and philosophy as well as his books on politics. I, of course, do not identify with his ideas most of the time when it comes to
Dr. Anat Matar from
The Interior Ministry has yet to comment on the letter.