Talk:Richard A. Falk

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Making article more NPOV per WP:BLP[edit]

    • First I am avoiding studying new referenced material for accuracy, WP:Undue and other opinions, etc. cause just don't have time energy tonight.
  • I changed "Controversies and criticism" section to "Reception" per Wikipedia:NPOV#cite_note-1 which reads:
Article sections devoted solely to criticism, and pro-and-con sections within articles, are two commonly cited examples. There are varying views on whether and to what extent such structures are appropriate; see guidance on thread mode, criticism, pro-and-con lists, and the criticism template. And Wikipedia:Criticism elaborates more on this. This consideration is especially true for WP:BLP.
  • I changed the deceptive "International diplomatic condemnation" to "US, Canadian and Israeli government criticism", though if the rather tortured phrase "diplomatic condemnation" is that special to you, change it. The US and its two client states Israel and Canada can hardly be called an International phenomena and I'd like to see a WP:RS that calls it that.
  • If you can provide a source that says Falk actually resigned you can change that section header back.
  • Obviously the article can't just be a place for supporters of Israel to dump on a critics and I'm sure those at WP:BLPN would agree. So I will soon add a separate section listing sources that have more positive analysis of Falk's career and opinions and do something with them soon if no one else gets around to it. CarolMooreDC 02:00, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I've tagged the Response to reception section as non-neutral. Two whole paragraphs devoted entirely to the Israeli ambassador's statement following the Falk appointment is clearly WP:UNDUE. The Israeli viewpoint needs to be significantly trimmed so that it is proportionate to the other significant views on the issue. Dlv999 (talk) 10:05, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I have trimmed the material and removed the tag. Description of the Israeli statement is probably still overlong given undue weight, but at least it is now within reason. Also, I removed the "US, Canadian and Israeli government criticism" section, because the material was just a rehash of the points that are already covered in a balanced manner in the 2012 UN Investigations and reports section. I can see no justification for repeating all the negative comments from that section and presenting them in an unbalanced manner in an entirely new section. (The response of Israel to the report was not previously covered so I moved that to the the relevant section.) Dlv999 (talk) 10:14, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for noticing things I didn't. I think may be we need to create an "activism" section under life and work (which does need more on his professorial/writing career). We also can just remove the request for resignation sectioning cause that was just UN watch yelling antisemitism again, and HRW asking for a resignation at that time, refusing to say that HRW had anything to do with it, which really is the bottom line story. Another project for another day... CarolMooreDC 20:14, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I agree. I would prefer to see the material worked into one of the other sections. There is some good stuff about his activism and his professional career in this source [1] pp119 Dlv999 (talk) 20:45, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
That was first on my list, because it's already in there. And I'm sure there's lots more via books and scholar google and highbeam and questia. So much research, so little time. CarolMooreDC 22:55, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for bringing it to my attention DLV999, I didn't see that the 2012 section included information condemning the report SimplesC (talk) 22:22, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
The statements from those opposed to the inclusion of certain criticisms of Falk's statements are, in a word, ridiculous. Falk is appointed solely to look into the alleged human rights abuses of one country, Israel, and the response of the Israeli ambassador to this appointment is labeled Undue Weight? You have got to be freakin kidding me? The views of the country that is being investigated would seem to be "proportionate[ly]" more noteworthy than nation-states not being investigated. Such a statement should be obvious. But that would involve including even more condemnations of statements, widely recognized as anti-Semitic, made by Falk and we just can't have that, can we? Even worse than that whitewash is the fact that an individual who actually labels Israel and Canada "client states" of the US is being allowed to make determinations as to what is non-neutral and what isn't. If that isn't an example of the proverbial wolf guarding the henhouse, nothing is. And people wonder why this site isn't taken seriously. The same commenter's attestation that only the US, Canada and Israel have substantively criticized Falk is a falsehood so blatant that it has to be intentional. And according to this same person, again, this entry can't be a site simply for "supporters of Israel"(again we see the insidious smear that those criticizing Falk are merely covering for Israel) to "dump on" Falk, yet it can be a place where the works of Falk are lauded and Falk himself is lionized and placed in a "positive light". Nah, that isn't biased, not one bit. To further this end, another commenter cites a 14 year old source that contains absolutely nothing concerning the widespread condemnation of Falk's anti-Semitism. The repeated assertions, both implicit and explicit, that criticism of Falk's anti-Semitism is simply limited to those shilling for Israel, should be called out for what they are: a disingenuous load of bullshit of the variety that often veers extremely close to overt anti-Semitism. One commenter has taken to labeling virtually every criticism of Falk as nothing more than the overreaction of a bunch of uppity Jews. The use of the term "yelling" in reference to UN Watch is another, of many, perfect examples of this. Such an individual should not have such a free hand in editing this entry. That she often tries to shroud her bias in Wikipediaese doesn't make it any less obvious or objectionable. (talk) 07:14, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
You should read WP:TALK and rewrite your comments inline with that guideline. No one should have to read your personal opinions about the real world here. That's what blogs are for. You need to make specific suggestions detailing proposed changes to the article based on reliable sources and Wikipedia's policies. Sean.hoyland - talk 07:35, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
I am making suggestions regarding this entry. I have clearly stated that various edits should have not been undertaken because particular editors are shockingly biased. I have stated that removal of the statement from the Israeli ambassador, and the reasons given, are ridiculous and the edit should therefore be undone. I have objected to the inclusion of particular sources and statements that are too biased in favor of Falk. Pretty much everything I mention in the above comment is either regarding the bias of editors, editorial decisions and the material that should or shouldn't be included in the entry. Absolutely nothing written in the above comment is unrelated to this entry. In other words, your criticism is a total joke completely lacking in merit. Get back to me when you can find a single portion of my comment that doesn't have to do with the entry. Yeah, good luck with that. (talk) 07:44, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Have it your own way. Your current approach will give you the opportunity to learn what can be achieved here through belligerence, soapboxing and not following talk page guidelines. Sean.hoyland - talk 07:56, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Yeah, you really addressed my response. As for citing reliable sources for proposed changes, I see approximately zero reliable sources cited in regards to changes being proposed by the editors to whom I am responding. What I do see is their personal opinions being put forth(and acted upon) as to why this entry should be edited in a fashion that suits them. Disagree with the substance of the criticism directed at Falk? Easy, just label it Undue Weight. Don't like the fact that so many people have criticized Falk? Well, we can just trim that down by making bogus BLP claims. You have sources to back those claims you say? Well, let's just arbitrarily label those sources as unreliable. Problem solved. The notion that you can just arbitrarily cite, without merit, Wikipedia rules and then change the entry to your liking is pure nonsense. The same editors use their baseless accusation of various rules violations, by themselves, as evidence of those violations, so that they can trim whatever the hell they personally don't like about the article. It isn't just confined to this one comment section. My comment is written in objection to these changes, which is why the assertion I am treating this page like a blog, rather than suggesting changes to the entry, is so ridiculous, to put it mildly. And unlike them, I haven't tried to shape this entry to conform to my own personal biases, biases which they have made very clear without reference to the "reliable sources" you claim to care so much about, but whose absence you have yet to object. What I do see are vague allusions to various references that they will mention at a later time. However my objection to their extremely biased changes (ever single change they have made has redounded to the benefit of Falk and his reputation)is not the greater issue. The real issue is the fact that their statements in both this, and other sections of the comment page, should disqualify them entirely from editing this page. (talk) 08:14, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Israel Propaganda[edit]

Seems like this whole article was written by a bunch of israeli students pid by the government. Can someone please remove all the editorial crap and emphasis. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:02, 23 March 2014 (UTC)

He's antagonized a lot of people over the years, and as long as it's relevant and covered in reliable sources then it can be included in Wikipedia. AnonMoos (talk) 04:01, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
I concur. Criticism is not propaganda. If there are problems with the page, it is in the poor organisation of the material, and insufficient attention to the formation of his ideas that form the backdrop for the various positions he has adopted.Nishidani (talk) 11:14, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
I agree with the last two colleagues above. Wikipedia is not censored. Terms like "propaganda" will not enhance your reputation in the community, IP, if you wish to be taken seriously. Your sense of WP:AGF needs revisiting too. Facts are a multi-edged blade. They cut in all directions, often inconvieniently to one's POV. Attributing all your percieved issues with the article to a "bunch of israeli (sic) students pid (sic) by the government" bodes ill for your future on WP. Irondome (talk) 01:07, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
Regardless of your view on Israel Falk is a very controversial figure for his extreme-left political views and defense of terrorism. He was condemned by the UN Sec Gen, Canada, US, EU, and even the PA (for being too pro-Hamas). Here's some stuff on that. But yeah, he wasn't popular for MANY reasons, none of which can be trivialized as "propaganda". [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]. --monochrome_monitor 02:46, 7 August 2014 (UTC)

Secretary-General of the United Nations]] Ban Ki-moon condemned Falk[edit]

to Monochrome Monitor: Your recent edit results in:

  • Softening this criticism:

-Mr. Falk is so extreme in his support for the Hamas terrorist organization that even the Palestinian Authority has sought to remove him, on grounds that he is a “partisan of Hamas”,

-deploring Falk’s cover endorsement of a virulently antisemitic book,

-concerned that Mr. Falk has become one of the world’s most high-profile supporters of 9/11 conspiracy theorists

  • Removing this criticism:

-Falk article that is seeking to downplay, reinterpret and justify the latest call by Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal to destroy Israel,

-disturbed that Mr. Falk has falsely and absurdly accused Israel of planning a “Palestinian Holocaust

-Mr. Falk has repeatedly appeared on an internet site which promotes a 9/11 conspiracy theory and Holocaust skeptic who rails against the “ethnic Jews” who he says run Washington and the media and praising Iranian tyrant Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

=** It is not clear what is the reason for those modification. It is very unusual that the The Secretary-General of the United Nations is criticizing an U.N official and suggest to fire him. His harsh condemnation might be accepted by people who do not trust Fox news or "UNblog web site , the previous sources. Hence it is suggested to to present all of Ban Ki moon points. BTW Thank you for improving my English. Ykantor (talk) 20:17, 18 August 2014 (UTC)


please stop it. You simply opened a new section 'Criticism' to drop the text of a letter to the UN which is already covered in the preceding section. What's the point in repeating what is the view twice>?Nishidani (talk) 17:35, 2 November 2014 (UTC)

Sorry. The criticism section is my mistake. But why did you deleted the references ? Ykantor (talk) 00:11, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
The remarks are covered in the preceding section. The UN Watch's smear, demonstrably a violent series of allegations and distortions of Falk's remarks, is given more than WP:due space, as are the remarks of those who, without reading attentively, merely recycled the crap. By the way, UN WATCH is quite good on the third world, and apparently silent on Israel's abuse of Palestinian rights. Do you know of any document from them that, rather than accuse anyone of noting those abuses of being an anti-Semite, actually analyses Israel's record in the occupied territories. Self-evidently, if it is really committed to human rights, at least some constant monitoring of Palestinian rights should form part of their brief?Nishidani (talk) 12:06, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Why should genocidal Arab colonist-settlers get rights? That is akin to giving rights to Nazis. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:06, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
I am not familiar with UN Watch and I looked at Wikipedia UN_Watch. A crititism of a Journalist says: that the main objective of UN Watch "is to attack the United Nations in general, and its human rights council in particular, for alleged bias against Israel". Williams supported UN Watch's condemnation of the UN Human Rights Council as a hypocritical organization, but also accused UN Watch itself of hypocrisy for failing to denounce what he called "manifest Israeli transgressions against the human rights of Palestinians." It seems that the organization is indeed biased and not denouncing Israel. However the organization is doing a valuable job related to African problems. Also, a biased organization is not necessarily lying. As I read this specific UN Watch paper, it seems to be correct. BTW There are plenty of biased people ( e.g. Gideon Levy ) and organization who fiercely attack Israel, sometimes without a justification while ignoring any wrong doing by the Arab side. Ykantor (talk) 14:09, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
I agree that UN Watch is useful for information about abuses in other countries. But in the normal world, few people listen to folks who complain about crimes everyone else commits, esp. among the poor beyond their doors, while remaining silent about their own failings at home. We have plenty of organizations that strive for neutrality, Amnesty, Human Rights Watch etc., who are obliged to cover all bases. UN Watch has zero credibility in its criticisms of Falk et al. They falsified documentation to smear a man of great integrity.Nishidani (talk) 22:22, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
Nishidani -- this is not the place to debate the matter, but some would claim that the Palestinians already receive vastly disproportionate attention from the UN (compared to many other situations around the world), and therefore are beyond the remit of an organization focused on exposing institutional flaws in the UN, and crises which aren't yet receiving appropriate attention. I have no interest in defending UN Watch in detail, but it would appear to be too sweeping to claim that they have "zero credibility"... AnonMoos (talk) 13:59, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Sorry I'm a bit late... I think UN Watch took some "creative liberty" in interpreting some of Falk's arguably "eccentric" positions, but they did not smear him. He's really not in my opinion, nor in Samantha Powers opinion, a "man of integrity". He's extreme, and certainly not unbiased. I don't think I meant to delete the reference, I just didn't like how you quoted it in full. It seemed an excessive list of grievances that were mostly touched on in the critical section. If anyone impartial does some research they should take Falk with a grain of salt. I should say that regardless of my opinion on Falk, I try to be a moderating voice. Keep polemics, even those you find fair, concise. Right now this article is on the soft side though, ie in it calling his arguable 9/11 "truther" opinions "comments". --Monochrome_Monitor 17:24, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

"expressing his communistic beliefs"[edit]

The sentence “Falk began his teaching career at Ohio State University and Harvard expressing his communistic beliefs in the late 1950s.” was sourced to Martin Griffiths, Fifty Key Thinkers in International Relations, Routledge 1999 p.74

Well, it is not there. Not on p. 74, anyway; Falk is not mentioned. If we are going to have such a statement in the article (“expressing his communistic beliefs”) it should be impeccably sourced. Seriously, folks. Huldra (talk) 22:07, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

Repetition of quote claiming that Falk's comments on Boston marathon bombings are anti-Semitic[edit]

When reading this article for the first time, I was struck that the article's final paragraph (before the list of published works) duplicated an earlier passage. The ordering of footnotes seemed to confirm this -- after note 129, it ended, strangely, with note 100. So I was tempted to remove the duplicate passage, which had the ring of an editing error (or, more cynically, as an attempt to promote a point of view). On closer inspection I discovered that the quote was indeed duplicated, but its introduction was modified. And I could see the reason for the duplication: the quote, in which Falk's comments on the Boston marathon bombings are described as "anti-Semitic", is included under both relevant sections: 3.6 "[Notable opinions:] Boston marathon bombings" and 4 "Accusations of antisemitism".

As a first step, I decided to leave the quotation duplicated but I changed the introduction to its second appearance to reflect that it has previously been quoted, so it sounds less like an accident of poor editing. Also, I added a second footnote to the quote's second appearance, one derived from the original and far more extensive discussion of Falk's comments on the Boston marathon bombings and some of the reactions they provoked (both negative and positive). This footnote leads to Falk's original commentary which provoked the quoted accusation of anti-Semitism, and its inclusion could help a reader to judge whether the accusation of anti-Semitism is merited.

I hope these changes make the article both more professional and more neutral, but I still wonder whether the duplication of a quote -- especially a controversial quote -- is appropriate in an encyclopedia article, and if not, how best to handle this case. Any thoughts or suggestions are welcome. --Macam14 (talk) 17:20, 2 July 2016 (UTC)