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A book without a spine: Yale buckles to Muslim fanatics
by James Kirchick
Last week, a group of Yale alumni (myself included) released an open letter protesting Yale University Press' decision not to publish the infamous Muhammed cartoons in a book about those very illustrations. "The Cartoons That Shook the World," by Brandeis Prof. Jytte Klausen - set for publication within weeks - details the 2005 events in which Muslim preachers seized upon 12 drawings in a Danish newspaper to orchestrate a global campaign of violence that led to the deaths of 200 people.
Citing fears of further hostility, the Press, under the advisement of top university officials and unnamed outside "experts," chose to withdraw from the book not only the original cartoons but all images of the Muslim Prophet, whose visual representation Islamic law deems blasphemous. In so doing, Yale has sacrificed the fundamental liberal value of free speech on the altar of political correctness.
As the heat on their decision has ratcheted up, Yale and its defenders have hunkered down - insisting that their sole concern was that printing the cartoons would endanger the safety of those involved.
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