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Poland, W.S. (2005). On: A boycott by passport [Letter]. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 86(3):902-903.

(2005). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 86(3):902-903

On: A boycott by passport [Letter]

Warren S. Poland

Edited by:
Glen O. Gabbard and Paul Williams

The Editors regret publishing Kemp (2005) that contained partisan hatefulness. With the following letter from Warren Poland, we close the discussion.

Dear Sirs,

At a time when science is under political assault around the world and intellectual freedom faces powerful polemical enemies, Gabbard and Williams (2002)—along with the editors of most psychoanalytic journals—spoke out to “condemn recent actions that have denied academic freedom to individuals solely on the basis of their nationality”. In a responsive letter, Kemp (2005) condemned that editorial statement in a “condensed response” that “subsitute[d] for a reasoned analysis of the original editorial” [his words].

Having made their eloquent and sensitive point, I believe the editors were prudent in resisting the temptation to descend from their academic concern into the polemics of international events. However, one statement made by Kemp is so vilely destructive that it cannot be allowed to stand unanswered: He writes, as if it were a fact rather than his passionate prejudice, “Zionism is a racist ideology.” Even under the sway of the numerical power of the Arab states, the United Nations has properly repudiated that canard. What Kemp's intemperate partisanship leaves absent from his letter is a respect, if not a sympathy, for the horrors and sufferings of humanity on both sides in the Middle East conflict.

Despite his incendiary provocations, best dealt with outside the IJP arena, Kemp's letter opens another point cogent to both psychoanalytic practice and theory.

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