Wednesday, June 4, 2008

No Factual Evidence Of Any Kind

From Not the First Time Luttwak Gets His Factual Premises All Wrong by Jim Lobe:

Clark Hoyt, the public editor, or ombudsman, of the New York Times, went after Edward Luttwak in his weekly column today for the military historian’s controversial May 12 op-ed on why Sen. Obama would be considered an “apostate” by many Muslims and thus particularly susceptible to assassination attempts if, as president, he were to go on a state visit to a Muslim nation. After consulting with five Islamic scholars at U.S. universities on whether Luttwak’s argument was consistent with Islamic law, Hoyt concluded that Luttwak’s assertions were essentially baseless and “extreme” and strongly implied that the op-ed should not have been published at all. (The headline of Hoyt’s essay was “Entitled to Their Opinions, Yes. But Their Facts?”) Hoyt also took to task the op-ed editor, David Shipley, for publishing only letters to the editor in response to the original op-ed and not providing space for a full rebuttal.

This is not the first time that Luttwak, who has long gloried in his role as an unconventional policy provocateur (usually, but not always, on behalf of hawkish, if not neo-conservative, forces in Washington), has written attention-grabbing op-eds that are based on no factual evidence of any kind. I haven’t compiled them in any systematic way, but one example some 20 years ago really stands out as a warning to all op-ed editors at elite newspapers that Luttwak was not the most careful of researchers.
Read the rest here.

0 comments - Post a comment :

Post a Comment