Talk:Richard A. Falk/Archive 1

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Archive 1 Archive 2

Early note

Any care to elaborate how the neutrality of this article is under suspicion? Saadbd (talk) 08:11, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

9/11

I just learned that he is quite involved in the 9/11 truth movement. Check this one out: http://www2.nysun.com/article/74465 —Preceding unsigned comment added by 193.157.249.88 (talk) 02:57, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

Busy beefing up this page. will include the above soon unless someone beats me to it. Working on bibliogrpahy then quiting for the night.Carol Moore 05:52, 12 April 2008 (UTC)Carolmooredc {talk}

Take a look at this very odd article too. He's a brave man who is either going to find his world caving in on him, or there are some forces of good left in this world:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/david_aaronovitch/article3746592.ece?Submitted=true —Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.205.202.176 (talk) 17:56, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

The following sentence is rather ambiguous: "In 2004, Falk wrote a preface to David Ray Griffin's book The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 9/11 which presents evidence that the George W. Bush administration was complicit in the September 11 attacks.[27] ". Does that mean that Falk's preface presents evidence or that Griffin's book presents evidence? Boud (talk) 23:47, 1 January 2009 (UTC)
I think it's pretty clear that the book is what is being described; if you know he only talked about his OWN theories and Not Griffins. His purpose would be to support Griffin. But if you think that he was presenting his own theories, do some research on reviews that mention Falk and see what they have to say about it and correct it. CarolMooreDC (talk) 18:26, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Regarding this section of the page - I was thinking of changing the header in the Controversies and Criticisms section from "Support for further 9/11 investigations" to "Allegations of US Complicity in 9/11" which I think is a more accurate description of exactly what Falk has done which has provoked controversy. It's also a much better description of the paragraph that immediately follows. Thoughts? As an outsider to this page, I didn't want to step on any toes, so wanted to hear if there were any objections first. YCubed (talk) 12:49, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

I just added the info to first paragraph he was calling for an investigation. He is not stating any detail theory of his own as much as saying that there seems to be overlooked evidence of possible complicity and an investigation is needed. Too POV/WP:OR to claimed he himself takes a strong position of such complicity. CarolMooreDC (talk) 15:14, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I agree with you - he certainly hasn't offered a detailed theory of his own. It's just that the header doesn't reflect the controversial aspects in his statements, and seems to obfuscate the issue (on my first read-through, I did a double-take and had to reread, which is generally a good indicator if something is incongruous). Falk has supported and written laudatory prefaces for writers who claim American complicity in 9/11 and calls for further investigation (2006, as per the page) because "the established elites of the American governmental structure have something to hide and much to explain." How about a softer "Suggestions of American Involvement in 9/11"? That sums up his work in this area, without attributing a definite, overly specific structure to his view ("Allegations of US Complicity," on second glance, being far too strong). YCubed (talk) 15:44, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Just to clarify - I'm saying that Falk is not controversial in that he has called for renewed investigations of 9/11. He is controversial because of where he has said he believes those investigations will lead. If he suggested there would be found more Bangladeshian involvement, I doubt similar reactions to him would have surfaced. It's his intimations about America that are drawing the "criticism and controversy" this section is about. YCubed (talk) 15:50, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
The section is called "Notable" not "controversial." And calling for more investigations is itself controversial. But an alleged intimation is WP:OR - his call for further investigations is clear in both sources. CarolMooreDC (talk) 15:19, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm sure you're juggling many Wiki pages at the moment, which is probably why you didn't notice that my comment was addressed to the original section title, before another user altered it from "Controversy and Criticism" to "Notable Views" just yesterday. This is key becasue criticism is about others' interpretations of a subject's views, not about us playing amateur detectives and passing judgment over whether they're right! A host of Falk critics could be summoned to make this point, and fairly listed with no POV problems (try Google for some noteworthy pieces by journalists, bloggers and NGOs). That said, the question is mooted, as I agree with the user who altered the title to "Notable Views", which sidesteps this issue, and also more accurately categorizes the state of the page. But please assume good faith on my part (and also that I'm able to read) before telling me I've made up a section header :). Best, YCubed (talk) 20:39, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Actually I didn't realize it had been changed (or remembered it had been controversial) til after finished my last last comment. Too many pages too little memory. This is second time this week I've seen controversial changed to notable for just that reason and it's generally a good move. 02:24, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

re: # 3.2 Support for Iranian Revolution and Ruhollah Khomeini

By 1985 he had reversed his opinion. See TOWARDS A JUST WORLD PEACE p23. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.150.142.67 (talk) 23:03, 3 September 2008 (UTC) cette biographie est à compléter. Il y amanque d'abord date et lieu de de naissance, etc. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 90.1.0.19 (talk) 17:41, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

Feel free to add the quote. A quick search turned up a google book reference from "On Humane Governance" 1995 page 117 where he talks about democratic fundamentalist regimes. Carol Moore 00:31, 28 November 2008 (UTC)Carolmooredc

Clarifying perhaps confusing UN Press release

I think both of us have had some problems interpreting what it says. Here is the Press Release statement in question:

The mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territories was hopelessly unbalanced. This mandate was redundant at best and malicious at worst. It was impossible to believe that out of a list of 184 potential candidates, the eminently wise members of the Consultative Group honestly had made the best possible choice for this post. In a recent article, the proposed candidate stated that he did not think it was "an irresponsible overstatement to associate the treatment of Palestinians with the criminalized Nazi record of collective atrocity".

  • It's best to just quote what the press release said (in bold) than make an inaccurate summary
  • Lavon is quoting Falk who many sources quote as saying it is NOT "an irresponsible overstatement...etc." CarolMooreDC (talk) 00:00, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
Please search google to see that it was Falk who said that it is NOT "an irresponsible overstatement to associate the treatment of Palestinians with the criminalized Nazi record of collective atrocity". Just being accurate. CarolMooreDC (talk) 02:13, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
Actually technically he ASKS if it is "an irresponsible overstatement" whereas Levanon states Falk does not think it is one. So then there's the problem of correcting the somewhat inaccurate statement of Levanon about what Falk said. Probably that should be done in footnote with another reference, which I'll do. CarolMooreDC (talk) 02:17, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
I moved this here from my talk page because maybe we need a third party to straighten out confusion...
Hey man:
Just want to avoid an edit war here so I thought I'd message you directly. It seems we're having a dispute over a couple of words in the Richard. A Falk article.
Here is your revision: [3], here is your rationale: Falk DOES equate Nazi and Israeli atrocities; reread whole paragraph
I totally agree with you here, I just don't see why my version is wrong.
The paragraph in question: In a recent article, the proposed candidate stated that he did not think it was "an irresponsible overstatement to associate the treatment of Palestinians with the criminalized Nazi record of collective atrocity". Someone who had publicly and repeatedly stated such views could not possibly be considered independent, impartial or objective, as was explicitly required in the institution building text. The Human Rights Council was rapidly moving away from its raison d'être. The members of the Council were missing an opportunity to show the world that this Human Rights Council genuinely sought improvement, the chance to make a difference, and the prospect of laying the groundwork for better cooperation with Israel.
What is wrong with saying: Referring to his "irresponsible overstatement to associate the treatment..."?
Wikifan12345 (talk) 02:27, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
Falk thinks it is NOT an "irresponsible overstatement" to associate these. Is that not clear? CarolMooreDC (talk) 02:55, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
If we still do not understand each others' position by Monday PM and no one else clarifies, I'll take to WP:BLP Noticeboard and maybe someone in there can come in and staighten it out. CarolMooreDC (talk) 02:59, 23 February 2009 (UTC)
Chill man, no need to set ultimatums and then threaten with noticeboards. Consensus does not = Do as I say or I will report you. :D I just didn't understand the reasoning behind your edit, and now I do. Cheers! Wikifan12345 (talk) 04:15, 23 February 2009 (UTC)

<__I was just looking for a third party to clarify but glad you got it! :-) CarolMooreDC (talk) 17:13, 23 February 2009 (UTC)

Is this bio the forum for discussing British foreign policy?

This edit segways into British foreign policy, which is unrelated to the subject of this article. I have thus removed this tangential issue. --brewcrewer (yada, yada) 15:57, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Correcting POV in British govt entry

From the talk section I was just writing. I've changed it to:

In March 2009, Falk stated his belief the Israel's offensive in Gaza constituted a war crime of the "greatest magnitude." He called for an independent group to be set up to investigate the war crimes committed on both sides.[33] In response to a Parliamentary question, junior foreign minister Bill Rammell wrote: "The report of the UN Human Rights Council's Special Rapporteur is unbalanced and contributes little." However, he said the government was waiting for the results of several ongoing investigations into alleged human rights violations and was continuing to "press the Israeli government to abide by all its international commitments, including its obligations under the fourth Geneva convention."[34]

Because:

  • Falk made a statement of belief, proper grammar
  • But the statement in context of who and why - it wasn't the Prime Minister on national Tv after all. It's POV to make it sound like that is the status.
  • Added the important statement that the British govt does have problems with Israel's actions, but may not agree with every point Falk makes.

Of course, we could probably add statements I've seen in my google alerts from higher placed govt officials of other governments agreeing with what he says. If time allows. Meanwhile guess we'll have to bring this to proper noticeboard. CarolMooreDC (talk) 16:00, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

See we've both reached 3RR, how about compromise:A junior foreign minister of the British government responded to Falk's report by stating that "the report of the UN Human Rights Council's Special Rapporteur is unbalanced and contributes little." However, he said the government.. CarolMooreDC (talk) 16:08, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

There are a number of problems with this addition. Firstly, stating that the British response came from a junior foreign minister is nothing less POV weasel wording. It's like saying that according to Robert Gibbs, a junior member of the Obama Administration, said that the Obama Administration.........If this "junior minister" said what he said as representative of the British Government it should not be qualified. The second problem with this addition is that the tangential mention of British foreign policy is the wrong place for information. This is the biography of Falk. What belongs here is what Falk does, his successes and his failures. If the British Government does not accept Falk's report it belongs in the article. The inclusion of British foreign policy is a POV soapbox that is unrelated to Falk's bio. --brewcrewer (yada, yada) 16:15, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

According to WP:BLP policy: "Biographical material must be written with the greatest care and attention to verifiability, neutrality and avoiding original research." Replacing an accurate, from the source phrase "In response to a Parliamentary question, junior foreign minister Bill Rammell wrote: (something negative)" with "The British government responded to Falk's report by stating (something negative)" claiming it is "weasel words" does not seem to be in tune with neutrality. Obviously, lower ranking government officials say things every day that are ignored, rejected, counterbalanced by other things said by the "government." So identifying who said it and why is useful. Refusing to do seems like attempt to make it look like the full weight of all parts of the government is now bearing down upon him. CarolMooreDC (talk) 17:03, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
No. He was making the statement in his official capacity as representative of the government. Nobody has yet to contradict him nor will he be contradicted by another government official. Claiming that his statement might be ignored, rejected, or counterbalanced" is your opinion, which is OR, and in this case incorrect. Just like statements by the Obama administration don't all have to be qualified by according to "Robert Gibbs, a junior member of the Obama Administration", statements from representatives of the British government do not have to be qualified by which lackey actually made the pronouncement. Finally, it's not the article's reader fault that the British government felt that they don't need anybody even remotely important to announce that they think Falk's report is shit. We don't have to waste the reader's time with weasel words.--brewcrewer (yada, yada) 18:34, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
There's more info coming in on this which will be added soon. CarolMooreDC (talk) 20:56, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

Falk family background

It would be nice if people gave a reason for deleting this, that's standard wiki policy. Maybe there is one, but the idea is to tell us what it is.

Falk described his family background as "assimilationist Jewish with a virtual denial of even the ethnic side of Jewishness." REF: Griffiths, Martin. Fifty Key Thinkers In International Relations. Routledge, 1999. (Page 119) CarolMooreDC (talk)

It appears that Richard Falk has a "self" identification problem given that these two references are not compatible thus necessitating a correction.

"Against this background, it is especially painful for me, as an American Jew, to feel compelled to portray the ongoing and intensifying abuse of the Palestinian people by Israel through a reliance on such an inflammatory metaphor as ‘holocaust.’"

http://www.transnational.org/Area_MiddleEast/2007/Falk_PalestineGenocide.html Eyesockett (talk) 13:39, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

forgive me if I suffer from "forumitis" but I am having trouble with this: "It would be nice if people gave a reason for deleting this, that's standard wiki policy". Are we talking about "reasons" sourced within wiki policy or adjunct to wiki policy? If "within wiki" then could someone point to this. I do not wish to founder on the shoals of solipsism Eyesockett (talk) 14:24, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

People often say contradictory things about themselves and it's not for us to decide which is "true." (And people can have somewhat different views at different periods, and especially in response to different questions, etc.) If it is an important factoid-as this is- and editors don't feel either has been express predominantly, then both views can be expressed. CarolMooreDC (talk) 01:45, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Indeed, "people often say contradictory things about themselves" but the question begs why use only one answer and sacrifice the other to oblivion? Could not the choosing of the chosen "answer" subtly distort?

To this: "(And people can have somewhat different views at different periods, and especially in response to different questions, etc.)" One could ask whether it is a "period" or a "circumstance" dictating the choice?

not wishing to cloud the issue too much this needs to be added:

Marian Houk: "..... The Israeli media was recently told that the government would not cooperate with this mission, despite their respect for Goldstone (who, like the UN HRC's Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in the occupied Palestinian territory, Professor Richard Falk, is Jewish -- though Falk may also be a Baha'i). ....." http://www.losangeleschronicle.com/articles/view/104416

Online Journal of Baha'i Studies http://www.scribd.com/doc/10869920/Online-Journal-of-Bahai-Studies Eyesockett (talk) 02:53, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

OK, as someone who has worked a lot on the article, I personally didn't notice that there was a contradiction between material already in there. Probably others didn't either. WP:AGF. I don't have a problem with your adding his calling himself Jewish, now that you've pointed out the problem.
However, a search of the source on Bahai only calls him a neo-idealist and a cosmopolitan, not a follower of Bahai. So I've deleted that until you find and quote with page number where that source or some other says he is. CarolMooreDC (talk) 23:37, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Thank you, I see. I read it differently but accept your interpretation. I was unduly influenced by a statement by Marian Houk. [1]

Now I would like to get some advice on Richard Falk and 9/11. Does a statement by Mr. Falk possibly implicating the NeoCons in 9/11. [2] have sufficient weight to be mentioned in the "Article" page given Mr. Falks identity and his relationship to Israel? Eyesockett (talk) 01:11, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Not unless the Sun article itself explicitly claims that, which it does not. (Untruth is a blog so NOT WP:Reliable source - plus I have a feeling the Bahai claim comes from Wikipedia.) Drawing such connections like that ourselves is what is called WP:Original research and is against Wikipedia policy. (Even if he was one of those who believe the also popular theory that there is strong evidence that Israel's Mossad knew the attack was coming and planted the WTC bombs to take political/financial advantage of the fact, on himself or a WP:RS making those connections could be used. CarolMooreDC (talk) 14:09, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

I think there needs to be a criticism part

this guy is clearly off base with many of his ideas and assertions. I would bet many have criticized him. There needs to be a section on thisTallicfan20 (talk) 06:38, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

A criticism part would only be appropriate if the criticism would be sufficiently notable as such, i.e. if the criticism (who criticizes, how criticism has evolved etc.), not Falk himself, would be the main topic of a relevant number of texts published by reliable sources.  Cs32en  11:59, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
Feel free to write one up. Falk has been the target of many campaigns by prominent academics, activists, and politicians. I changed the "other issues" section title to controversies. I really don't see the reasoning by the extremely understated title, it certainly is not accurate. Wikifan12345 (talk) 02:09, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

The real criticism is that he's personally unacceptable to the government of Israel, and has a habit of making broad sweeping statements which antagonize a significant proportion of the Israeli population, so that the choice to appoint him to his current position seems to have been made more on the basis of spiting Israel than serving any very useful diplomatic goals (or at least that's how some people see it). The UN has a curious habit of throwing out similar individuals (who create a distraction by attracting attention to their own personal charcteristics more than they fulfill the UN's professed goals) in similar situations, such as Cornelio Sommaruga... AnonMoos (talk) 18:02, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

The article already has criticism of him for the specific things he's been notably criticized for. The controversies section certainly could be considered critical. Find WP:RS criticisms and if they don't fit into currently existing sections, then bring a proposal for a criticism section here. CarolMooreDC (talk) 20:43, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
As much as I don't like Falk criticism sections can lead to unnecessary disputes and edit-warring. I we retain the controversy heading and focus more on his relationship with the UN and Arab states. Wikifan12345 (talk) 22:17, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I think the right thing to do is to remove the entire section until such time that the controversies/criticisms are attributed to reliable sources and explained. At the moment the article doesn't explain why these are 'controversies' or who is calling them controversies. It's not self-evident. As it says in WP:CRITS "Criticism sections should not be used to describe attributes that are likely to be criticized unless and until a meaningful individual has criticized the subject for that attribute. All criticism in the dedicated section should be attributed to a specific critic. Attributes which are likely to draw criticism may be documented elsewhere in the article if relevant". Sean.hoyland - talk 10:00, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
You are correct sir. I don't have a problem with including the info if wp;rs and not wp:undue, but it should be under "Notable opinions." CarolMooreDC (talk) 17:41, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
"Notable opinions" is inherently POV. Why are these opinions notable? Because they are controversial. Falk has many many many "notable" opinions, so it is unfair of us to fact-pick a series of clearly controversial opinions and gift-wrap it as "notable." Wikifan12345 (talk) 09:54, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
It's clear to me that the earth is flat. I can see it with my own eyes. However if we could convert "clearly controversial" into something that complies with wp:v it would be quite handy. I suggest we edit war over it. Stop getting blocked by the way. Sean.hoyland - talk 10:24, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Okay but that's not a fair comparison. The inclusion of these opinions is based on their controversy - not notability. Notability is ambiguous, notable to what? Falk's general opinions that are cited by many academics and activists would be considered far more notable than the cherry-picked opinions (picked for their controversy) listed in the section. If WP:V defines notability, the current title violates policy. Wikifan12345 (talk) 10:42, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

<backsent>I note now that three of four - except View on Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979 - have at least a criticism to make them controversial. Remember it's WP:RS who make something controversial, not editors thinking it is controversial. So eliminate that one and you can go back to controversial. Notable means some WP:RS - or 3 or 4 - bothered to note it somewhere. CarolMooreDC (talk) 21:32, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Well then it should be criticism, or notable criticism, etc. The controversy is explicit, the notability is not. Wikifan12345 (talk) 22:24, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Removed Uncited Quotes, Text

Removed the following from the article (from middle of 'Statements on Israeli-Palestinian conflict' section), per WP:NOCITE as this is a biography of a living person:

Falk claimed that Israel was heavily involved in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that its "tentacles" extend to troubled African countries such as Angola, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, and Sudan. He has also urged the International Criminal Court to look into the possibility of trying Israeli leaders for war crimes. He has referred to Palestinian suicide bombings as a legitimate method of struggle.
Describing the establishment of Israel, Falk stated that "Worse than the Nazis, Israeli forces used to invade peaceful Palestinian towns, execute men, women, and children in cold blood everywhere and anywhere they encountered them, dynamite the homes on top of their residents, and finally demolish the whole town, making room for new Israeli colonies". He has accused the Jewish militias which founded Israel of carrying out a "pre-meditated genocidal plan".

Not only no references, but the surrounding text's citations don't refer to any of this (google doesn't even know that last quote) and it's harmful as it stands. - TheSlowLife (talk) 16:28, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Still teaching

It is not true that he retired from teaching. During winter quarter 2011 Falk is still teaching at UCSB. He is also listed as faculty at the Global & Internation Studies program: http://www.global.ucsb.edu/people/faculty.html 70.191.90.127 (talk) 02:06, 24 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks, but do you have anything to assert that he's responsible for any actual classes? The link you gave describes him only as a "research professor". My own university has many more non-teaching "research" profs than teaching profs, by far. ( I once worked for one who had been at my university for 12 years, but had never taught a class. I suggested it to him once, and he obviously thought it a novel idea! ) Non-teaching profs are retained and promoted for the grant money and prestige they bring to the school, and in American universities, anyway, this is more the norm than the exception.  – OhioStandard (talk) 20:50, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for this objection. I am actually a student participation in his course. Does that work as a proof? 70.191.90.127 (talk) 00:45, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

I do hope he is not teaching students. With his attitudes he will corrupt them and fill their young naive heads with hate filled lies. The man is a menace and should never have been put in these positions of influence. Its quite amazing how the Loony Left get where they do. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 92.30.9.171 (talk) 15:31, 13 October 2011 (UTC)

BLPN

Transferred here

I have opened a BLPN thread about the 9/11 truther label.[4] 71.141.88.54 (talk) 18:21, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

Truther stuff

Transferred from BLPN

I came across Richard A. Falk through a discussion on another site; I'd never heard of him til a few minutes ago. I found an overstatement in the lead paragraph that I was about to fix, but I saw on the talk page that he is wound up in the Israel/Palestine conflict, a traditional Wikipedia battleground, so I'm bringing it here I don't want to mess with it myself at this point.

A 9/11 truther,[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10] Falk has been condemned by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and others for suggesting that the George W. Bush administration, rather than al-Qaeda, was responsible for the September 11 attacks.[11]

I have looked at all 11 of those footnotes and not a single one of them labels Falk as an actual 9/11 truther. They establish pretty well that he has expressed truther sympathies and gotten criticized for it, but that's not the same thing. Falk himself writes, in one of the editorials that drew the criticism:

It is not paranoid under such circumstances to assume that the established elites of the American governmental structure have something to hide, and much to explain. What has not been established by the “9/11 Truth Movement” is a convincing counter-narrative – that is, an alternate version of the events that clears up to what degree, if at all, the attacks resulted from incompetence, deliberate inaction, and outright complicity.[5]

That seems to say: there are gaps in the official report, but the truther 9/11 conspiracy theories aren't supported either. I don't see how to neutrally call someone who writes that a flat-out truther.

The sentence also says "Falk has been condemned... for suggesting that the George W. Bush administration" sourced to the Jerusalem Post. The Jerusalem Post article uses the word "questioning" rather than "suggesting", which comes across slightly differently IMHO.

I'm also not sure how to assess the neutrality of the various sources cited. I.e. I have to wonder to what extent Falk is being attacked by proxy because of his role in the I/P conflict, using this 9/11 stuff as a pretext. Falk replied on his blog (http://richardfalk.wordpress.com) but that is not mentioned.

Anyway, I think the sentence should be rewritten. While writing this post, I found there was also an NPOVN thread January 20[6] and there has been some edit warring related to the sentence (that's why there are so many footnotes now), so I think more careful examination is needed, with sanctions against tendentious re-insertion if necessary.

71.141.88.54 (talk) 18:45, 29 January 2011 (UTC)


He may not technically be a truther of the truthiest (not sure I fully understand your distinctions), but the fact that he has been condemned by Ban Ki-Moon is extremely notable... AnonMoos (talk) 18:53, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
I agree that the condemnation is notable and should probably remain (or at least be discussed) which is why I made this edit. It was reverted. I removed the label because of statements Falk has made about whether he is a '9/11 truther' from a Salon source used in this article. See the NPOVN discussion. The obvious point as far as I'm concerned is that the article can't label a BLP using Wikipedia's narrative voice based on unattributed opinion when the BLP subject disagrees with the label. That seems like an NPOV and a BLP violation to me. We can say that he is described as X by Y and he says he isn't X but we can't say that he is X as a statement of fact. Also, the lead doesn't follow WP:LEAD which isn't helping. The lead should just summarize the article rather than introduce new information and sources. Sean.hoyland - talk 19:10, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks Sean. I think "suggesting" should also be changed to "questioning" per the above, and should be attributed in-text to the Jerusalem Post per ATTRIBUTEPOV. What I see in Falk's own statements (I've only looked at a few though) is that he says the 9/11 official report has gaps and contradictions, but I don't see him directly insinuating that Bush did 9/11. 71.141.88.54 (talk) 19:28, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
  • I have opened an ANI thread since the label has re-appeared.[7] Falk himself says:
To call for an investigation along these lines does not make one "a 9/11 truther" or an endorser of a conspiracy theory. The deliberate blurring of the boundary between questioning the persuasiveness of the official version of 9/11 and the endorsement of an alternative theory of the events that implicates high officials in the Bush presidency seems designed to prevent further inquiry.[8]

So even if there were sources labelling him as a truther, WP:ATTRIBUTEPOV would apply. Using Wikipedia's narrative voice is highly tendentious given the amount of reverting that has gone on over this already. 71.141.88.54 (talk) 12:11, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

Please don't hang disputable labels around subjects necks, such as "birther" and "truther" clearly meant to ridicule, allow the words to speak for themselves. Off2riorob (talk) 14:30, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
Wait--I screwed it up, I tried to remove the truther claim, but I reverted the wrong edit, so I only took out some of the added footnotes. Thanks for taking care of it. 71.141.88.54 (talk) 17:01, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

Since the word "truther" generally refers to someone who claims to be seeking the truth (but not necessarily someone who claims to know the truth), I'm not sure I understand the basis for some of this squeamishness. A direct quote from lead section of the article that truther redirects to: Adherents advocate and discuss different theories about how the attacks happened and call for a new investigation into the attacks. The word "truther" itself is derogatory as used by some, but worn as a proud badge of honor by others, so it seems to me that we should be most concerned with whether or not it's accurate. AnonMoos (talk) 21:23, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

I've always understood a truther to be someone who believes that the US government either did the 9/11 attack itself, or deliberately permitted it to happen. I would not consider the belief that the government (for whatever reason) merely interfered with intelligence gathering that might have prevented the attack, and then blocked off avenues of inquiry to the post-incident investigation to be a truther theory, and I think that is basically Falk's position. Colleen Rowley, who I've never heard called a truther, has said similar things.[9] Either way, though, it's not a label we can apply to anyone based on our own interpretation of what it means. Its use has to be sourced and attributed. Even if Falk calls himself a truther (which he doesn't), we'd say "self-described truther", not just plain "truther". 71.141.88.54 (talk) 22:05, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
You have had the secretary general of the united nations condemning this fellow for his involvement with the 9/11 truth movement, you have had him writing the forward to 9/11 truther texts and advocating for them on his blog. There were ten citations to his involvement in 9/11 truth. Would it be better to call him a "9/11 conspiracy theorist advocate"? V7-sport (talk) 23:32, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
No. It's not ok to describe him as anything having to do with this, without in-text attribution (WP:ATTRIBUTEPOV). 71.141.88.54 (talk) 23:47, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
"No. It's not ok to describe him as anything having to do with this"... So the fact that he has been "condemned" for his advocacy of such by the secretary general and the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.("Mr. Falk endorses the slurs of conspiracy theorists...") etc... Falk is someone who has devoted a whole lot of time and effort into the 9/11 truth movement, it seems that there is an effort to negate that here. V7-sport (talk) 00:03, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Not to negate it, just to document it neutrally. That doesn't seem to be what you're trying to do. 71.141.88.54 (talk) 00:06, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for assuming bad faith. Mr.Falk has associated himself with 9/11 truthers, endorsed their work, written forwards to their books and has posted his sympathies with the movement on his blog. All that is verifiable. "Neutrality" isn't negating the opinions he has expressed or the associations that he has worked to cultivate. V7-sport (talk) 00:21, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Lead section

I have removed a sentence about Falk's views of 9/11 from the lead section. Looking at the list of his published works (about three dozen items), none of these texts deals with 9/11. While sourced information should not normally be removed from articles, things are different with regard to the lead section. If the lead is expanded to about three times the current length, then a short sentence about his views on 9/11 may be appropriate.  Cs32en Talk to me  00:30, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

I don't understand what you are saying. Are "none of the texts [dealing] with 9/11" or is it "sourced information"?--brewcrewer (yada, yada) 00:53, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Richard Falk wrote the introduction to "The New Pearl Harbor" by David Ray Griffin, a book which alleges that 9/11 was an inside job. The statement from Ban Ki Moon is highly notable and should remain in the lead. V7-sport (talk) 00:55, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Cs32en. This is an attempt to discredit his I/P views by placing undue emphasis on another of his views, never a sound editorial policy, as it violates NPOV.  – OhioStandard (talk) 05:53, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Which one of his other views was singled out by the secretary general of the UN? V7-sport (talk) 06:25, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Do you agree that we should add condemnations by the secretary general of the UN to the leads of other articles and are you planning to do that ? Sean.hoyland - talk 06:50, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
When that is the thing that makes them most notable. (And how many other people has Ban Ki Moon condemned for being a 9/11 conspiracist? Kind of a rare thing, no?) V7-sport (talk) 07:13, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
How do you suggest we objectively measure that it's the thing that makes them most notable ? I've always regarded Falk as being most notable for his academic work on global governance and his outspoken condemnations of Israel's actions in the oPt. Perhaps I'm wrong. Ban Ki Moon has condemned many things. Singling out this instance for this article needs to objectively justifiable using policy based reasoning or else it just looks like POV pushing. Many editors don't like or do like Falk for various reasons and their personal views can't be allowed to influence the content of the article at all. Sean.hoyland - talk 07:36, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Well,you seem to have recognized it as notable when you wrote: "I agree that the condemnation is notable" in response to AnonMoos. Perhaps you can clue me into what criteria that you were using so we can have a basis on which to proceed. Seriously, We have just had the secretary of the UN condemning him for something that he has been known for for a while. Indeed, being admonished by the secretary general for advocating that 9/11 conspiracy theories ought to be taken seriously is pretty much the extent that the man on the street is going to be aware of this fellow because that has been the most notable thing that has been associated with him. John Wilkes Booth was evidentially a fine actor, but he was known for the assassination of Lincoln. Falk may be a fine speaker, but he is known for being condemned by Ban Ki Moon. I'm not saying that this is you reasoning, seriously, but it isn't maintaining a neutral point of view to divorce someone's wiki page from their own words and actions. V7-sport (talk) 09:05, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── He is not "known" for his comments on 9/11, though it has been seized upon by CAMERA, UN Watch and other polemical blogs. Please prefer higher quality sources such as one which has a section on Richard A Falk. unmi 13:16, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Sorry, but if he wasn't "known" for them before, then he is definitely known for them now, when Ban Ki-Moon has gone out of his way to highlight them. And of course the events of the past few weeks will not have worked their way into Google Books yet... AnonMoos (talk) 14:33, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
V7-sport, of course I recognise it as notable. I'm a Westerner, I read US and Israeli press and I happen to be alive right now. My source sampling bias is pretty obvious. That doesn't necessarily mean it's objectively notable in terms of this article's lead, wiki policy and the entire career of the subject. I don't even know whether it has been reported elsewhere, BBC, The Times of India, China Daily, The Times etc etc, so I wouldn't class myself as someone in a position to make a reliable and objective statement about the notability of the information. I think a Secretary-General of the UN condemning anything and anyone is notable and potentially lead-worthy for any article. Others may take a different view and the "Fifty key thinkers in international relations" source provided by unomi is a good sanity check for this bio. If someone can make a good case for inclusion in the lead based on better arguments than 'it is inherently notable" (my argument) or what the man of the street (probably in the US) may hypothetically regard as notable or assertions about what he is definitely known for right now and in the future it would be quite handy. My primary concern was the NPOV non-compliance and BLP violation via the truther labeling, an issue that seems to be resolved. Sean.hoyland - talk 18:39, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
"... and I happen to be alive right now." So we have found common ground. "Fifty key thinkers in international relations" wouldn't have any information on tis because it was published before his 9/11 conspiracism got traction in the mainstream media. I still think the "truther" label is entirely appropriate and it isn't our job here to ignore peoples words and actions, however I can see the reasoning behind removing it. (Not behind taking it to an ANI without any effort to communicate with me though.) I think a good compromise would be for me to withdraw my edit but to let AnonMoos' edit in the lead stand. that would take care of your primary concern give balance to the article. V7-sport (talk) 02:37, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Sean.hoyland -- I'm not really sure what your subjectivist and ultra-relativist counsels of despair are supposed to lead to in concrete terms, but I think it's pretty clear that the number of people whom the United Nations secretary-general directly personally condemns (and who are not war-criminals up before the ICC or notorious international terrorists) is in the low single-digits per year. It's the kind of thing that has a certain inherent notoriety, regardless of whether Google Books knows about it yet. AnonMoos (talk) 06:55, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
And once again, I agree with AnonMoos as to the notability of that edit. V7-sport (talk) 03:06, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

I also removed that from the lead. Its notable enough that it should be included in the article, of course. I note that it is, in its own section. But to pick out this one fact about someone's criticism of one of his views and stick that into the lead, is undue weight. I note that V7-Sport reverted me on this. I won't edit war with him, but looking at the above there does not appear to be any consensus on this, or perhaps consensus has changed? I'd like others feedback on the issue. Thanks. BernieW650 (talk) 21:53, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

I've asked some of the editors here to comment but my count above is, including me, 5 vs just you and other editor, which is a consensus to remove that from the lead. Again, I'll wait for others to comment. BernieW650 (talk) 22:01, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

There is no consensus to remove that. There was consensus to remove the "truther" label. Asking specific editors who have expressed a specific POV is WP:CANVASSING. Being condemned by the secretary general of the UN is HIGHLY NOTABLE. Indeed, more so then "speaker" or "activist", etc. It is also impeccably sourced. And I note this is the 4th Wikipedia page you have followed me to. That is WP:Wikihounding and I'm not going to put up with it.V7-sport (talk) 22:08, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
Well that is your view and it appears to not have consensus here. I have not followed you to this article either, as you have followed me around to other articles, btw. So that is a false claim. I happen to come across this article after you had made this comment attacking Richard Falk as a "nutbag", which is your personal opinion, to argue that citing him is regarded as "fringe" on Wikipedia, which is of course false. That is why I came to this article to check out that claim. I also note that you have been unable to assume good faith from the very begging and have continued to violate a number of wikipedia policies while accusing others of doing so, so I won't bother asking you to follow policies that you willfully continue to violate. BernieW650 (talk) 22:21, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
You haven't acted in good faith. Wikihounding and canvassing is just the latest indication. Go read what WP:consensus is please. V7-sport (talk) 23:06, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

Opinions of other people should not be in the lead section of any BLP, possibly with the exception of opinions that describe a broad consensus of historians. This is a WP:BLP issue, and even if there would be no consensus to remove the text on this talk page, the subset of editors here is certainly not at liberty to draw up specific rules for this article.  Cs32en Talk to me  23:09, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

He statements were condemned by the secretary general of the UN. That is highly notable as it only happens once in a blue moon. Not sure what you mean by "draw up specific rules for this article", It doesn't state that such a thing should be excluded from the lead. If you look at the rest of the talk page you will see that language was included with consensus because it is, highly notable. OhioStandard in particular made a good contribution to this. V7-sport (talk) 23:44, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
Doesn't matter if its rare or not. It is notable and that is why it can be included in the body of the article. It does not belong in the lead, and its opposed by many editors, not just myself. I hope you don't continue to edit war to get your way or you will end up getting blocked yet again.BernieW650 (talk) 23:47, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
I completely agree with removing that. It does not belong in the lead. Thank you for fixing that problem. I've been trying to avoid any edit war with V7-Sport who seems to be hungry for conflict, so I especially appreciate your initiative. BernieW650 (talk) 23:40, 12 May 2011 (UTC)
Which other editors Bernie33? The ones you canvassed? You only speak for yourself and stripping it out of the lead and burying it in the text doesn't change the fact that it actually happened. V7-sport (talk) 23:53, 12 May 2011 (UTC)

The man himself was not condemned, and other probs

( Because this article is under ARBPIA sanctions, I'm asking V7-sport to correct the following problems with one of his very recent edits, rather than just doing so myself. Besides, it seems polite to give him the chance to do so himself. I've posted this here, and notified him of it on his talk page, because there's been some controversy around this passage in the article's lead, and I think other editors should be aware of this as well. )

So, V7, I'd like call attention to a few problems with this edit, and ask you to correct them. Each of the following points pertain to that edit:

(1) You cited Google hosted news for a particular article. Unlike other news aggregators (Yahoo, notably), it's my understanding that Google News stays around for only 30 days, and should not be linked to for that reason. I added mention of this to the lead of our Google News article some time ago, based as I recall, on some mention of this on a WP policy page that I'm not going to take the time to track again now. The same article is behind a paywall at the American Free Press, which originated it, but is available here, on Yahoo, which will be a stable link. Would you please substitute the Yahoo link for the evanescent Google hosted news link?

(2) You edit summary in the diff I provided ( "Not just according to the Jerusalem post." ) indicates a belief that it wasn't just the Jerusalem Post that said the UN Secretary General condemned the man himself, rather than just his remarks. But this isn't supported by the links you provided. It's true that the Voice of America (VOA) ref/link carries the headline, "UN Chief Condemns Investigator on Palestine", but the article itself doesn't support that wording. Rather, it provides both an audio clip of his speech, and a corresponding print quotation that refute that wording. Here's what the article documents that the Secretary General actually said:

"Recently, the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories Occupied Since 1967 suggested there was an 'apparent cover-up' in the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States," said Ban. "I want to tell you, clearly and directly, I condemn this sort of inflammatory rhetoric. It is preposterous, an affront to the memory of the more than 3,000 people who died in that tragic terrorist attack."

Likewise, the American Free Press story says only that his remarks were condemned by Ki-Moon, not the man himself, and the Reuters story says the same thing. Even the Jerusalem Post story, which only provides only a snippet of the full Ki-Moon quotation that the American Free Press article includes says, in its title, that it's the remarks that he condemned, although the reporter incorrectly states in the body of that article that the "condemnation" applied to the man himself. In other words, Cs32en was correct in his edit summary here, that this was simple carelessness on the part of that reporter. Please correct the error.

(3) The final link you provided in that edit is, at the present time, a dead link. Please recheck it yourself, and if it's still unavailable when you do so, correct that problem by either deleting it or finding a live link to the same content.

Thanks,  – OhioStandard (talk) 08:51, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Btw, I still don't think this passage belongs in the lead, despite my surmise that the insistence we're seeing on keeping it there is an attempt to discredit this living person for his views on I/P matters.  – OhioStandard (talk) 09:05, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Sorry, but that's ultratechnicalistic reasoning which pretty much misses the main point though parsing the syntax into small fragments. Ban Ki-Moon kind of kept up a certain facade of etiquette by not mentioning Falk by name (apparently), etc. -- but it's nevertheless quite clear that it was Falk who was being condemned, not some abstract linguistic entity in Plato's world of forms; see metonymy and synecdoche. The mideast connection is that there are probably a fair number of people who think that Falk is an all-round nasty piece of work whose negative characteristics somehow escaped broader notice when they were directed mainly at Israelis... AnonMoos (talk) 09:51, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Re.Ohiostandard, You are correct, while the secondary sources state that he was condemned I looked into it further and Ban Ki Moon himself used the term Inflammatory rhetoric and in the written press release the language was " The Secretary-General condemns these remarks. He has repeatedly stated his view that any such suggestion is preposterous". I corrected the language, switched the link and lost the other link that isn't loading. It isn't my wish to "discredit" him, I do however think this is notable and should be included. (Indeed, he has advocated for a set of theories to be given credence in many venues, I personally believe that it should be given more prominence that it is.) Tanks for the heads up. V7-sport (talk) 10:13, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for your changes and comments, V7; I appreciate your fairness in that. No personal sleight intended re "discredit". Replied more fully at your talk page. Best,  – OhioStandard (talk) 21:08, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Re. AnonMoos I see your point and believe condemning one is as good as the other, however I think the language used now is most accurate.V7-sport (talk) 10:13, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
If it is to be included I think the following is a better reflection of what the sources+Falk say
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and others have condemned remarks Falk has made suggesting that there is an "apparent cover-up" by U.S. authorities over the September 11 attacks.
Any problem with that proposed change ?
AnonMoos, your "mideast connection" theory about what people think doesn't belong on the talk page. You probably already knew that. Let's just stick to discussing the article based on reliable sources and policy. The article is covered by discretionary sanctions for a reason. Sean.hoyland - talk 11:09, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, Sean: That change needs to be made immediately. I certainly don't blame any Wikipedia editor for it, but our current lead is very much at odds with what Falk actually wrote in his first blog post on this subject, and with his second one, as well. I'm as aware of the difference between primary and secondary sources, and of our policies about them, as is anyone here, I believe, but please read the links I've provided in the following section re my motivation for the "immediately" I'm using here, before you object. ( You'll be surprised.) Also, to Sean, please don't be too hard on AnonMoos about his "mideast connection" comment. I actually found his candor refreshing, and if we can't have a free and candid exchange of ideas and opinions here then where can we? Besides, I think we get better articles when we refuse to put up barriers to the expression of potentially unpopular opinions that aren't actually libelous or hateful. Just my opinon on that point, though.  – OhioStandard (talk) 18:10, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
A quick addition, in Dr. Falk's own words, from his follow-up blog post of 27 January, 2011:
"For anyone who read the blog post in its entirely (sic) it should be plain that the reference to the 9/11 issues is both restrained and tangential. What is stressed in the blog is the importance of carefully examining evidence before drawing conclusions about political and legal responsibility for highly sensitive public acts, and the importance for the serenity of the society of achieving closure in a responsible manner. I never endorsed doubts about the official version of 9/11 beyond indicating what anyone who has objectively examined the controversy knows – that there remain certain gaps in the official explanation that give rise to an array of conspiratorial explanations, and that the 9/11 Commission unfortunately did not put these concerns to rest... <snip> ... nothing more, nothing less.(source) (emphasis mine)
Since (1) my reading of Dr. Falk's original blog post fully supports this follow-up statement, (2) he directly denies what our current lead asserts, and (3) since this is a BLP issue with its subject very much in the public eye at present, I've chosen to implement Sean's suggestion about the wording of the lead. I apologize for doing so without leaving at least a couple of days for discussion here, but I hope other editors will consider the reasons I've given for doing so very carefully. I obviously can't insist, of course, but I'd also be sincerely grateful, for these same reasons, if we could get additional discussion here for at least 48 hours before anyone reverts that. The world won't crumble in the meantime, and it seems to me that we owe this courtesy, at least, to a BLP subject. Thank you,  – OhioStandard (talk) 20:05, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Seeming discrepancy on preliminary look

There's something about this that's beginning to disturb me. I'm not convinced of what that is just yet, but as with Sean's comment and proposal, above, I'd also thought of pointing out that the criticism by some of the secondary sources (i.e. news orgs) seemed to be going much farther than the primary source itself (i.e. Falk's initial blog post, on 11 January, 2011) and that Ban Ki-moon's and Susan Rice referenced in their respective criticisms. Now before you all jump on me for saying so, please take a look at the primary source material.

For example, unlike some of the news reports, the blog post doesn't even mention the Bush presidency or administration at all. And what Falk wrote is actually very considerably milder and more restrained than one would naturally assume from reading the news stories cited in our article. Falk's blog only called for additional inquiry − something more than half of even self-identified "very conservative" New Yorkers supported in a 2004 poll, btw. He did NOT accuse anyone of anything, he only suggested ... well, a quote would be helpful at this point. The most inflammatory statement he posted, imo, was this one, which hardly sounds like a call to the barricades to me:

"Let us remember that what seems most disturbing about the 9/11 controversy is the widespread aversion by government and media to the evidence that suggests, at the very least, the need for an independent investigation that proceeds with no holds barred."

I've been looking into this for a couple of hours now, and my early impression is that there are some troubling aspects to all this. I'm going to do some more digging if I can find time later today, and I'll post a summary of what I find in a separate section here. If you can't wait, you should at least read Falk's initial blog post and his follow-up blog post of 27 January, 2011. In fact, I'd say it'd be somewhat irresponsible not to read them carefully if you want to write about what Falk said, or about the reaction of public figures. Btw, I should clarify that I certainly don't doubt the good faith of any editor here. That's not the source of my concern about this issue. Anyway, more to follow asap, probably within within 24 hours, and sooner if I can find the time.  – OhioStandard (talk) 18:24, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

A brief update: I haven't forgotten my promise, just above. Since my previous post I've been able to spend another six or eight hours researching this, and I'm continuing to work at present. Because this is a controversial subject involving a BLP, however, and is more involved than I'd initially supposed, I do want to make sure I have the facts and sources straight and at least reasonably well-documented before I report back substantively here. I should be able to post at least a first installment of my results soon. Sincere thanks to my fellow editors for your patience so far.  – OhioStandard (talk) 23:43, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Update 2: I don't expect anyone's holding their breath, but I'm really not trying to be a wikitease here either: I just want to get this right. I believe I have fairly clear idea of the reasons for the discrepancy between what Dr. Falk wrote and what was reported by so many media properties, but communicating that in a reasonably-concise and well-documented way is something else again. Just fyi, and with thanks to AnonMoos for pointing out a potential misunderstanding, the discrepancy I'm seeing is emphatically not due to any after-the-fact revision or manipulation of the primary sources, viz. of Dr. Falk's blog posts. He has never been accused of any such thing, and no one should make such an inference.
I'm going to refrain from making any further temporizing updates until I can post substantive content, but if anyone cares I am most definitely continuing to work on this, and that pretty intensively, although real life responsibilities keep interfering, too. ( That pesky employment thing, you know. ;-) It'll seem absurd to many of you, I'm sure, but it's my impression that a standard work week would not be too much time to devote to this to give it the care it calls for. Until I get back to all y'all, though, and rejoin the fray here's a source for an American Free Press article that may give everyone something fun to fight over if you're all getting tired of hearing the crickets. Cheers,  – OhioStandard (talk) 23:31, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

"Negative opinion piece"

(Moved from my talk page) According to your view, are all NGO websites "opinion pieces," and thus should not be reported as "NGO X criticized..."? That's what it seems like.

Also, there's not even a shred of doubt that it was reliable. If you would look at the references, you'd see that there was a reference to Falk's blog post... (Unless my eyes are playing tricks on me)

--Activism1234 01:43, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

Actually, I removed the material after looking at one WP:RSN discussion [which questioned its use as primary source], thinking it was another group. Then I looked at the article and the other two relevant WP:RSN discussions [about critics of group] and realized that it was not quite the open and shut case I thought. It's obviously a rabidly pro-Israel organization whose main goal is to defame critics of Israel and therefore problematic from a truly NPOV point of view to use anything it says as a primary source. More WP:RS reports of what it says are more useable. So I'm trying to decide what is the best approach: just reduce the amount of WP:Undue attack propaganda or go to WP:RSN [or WP:BLP] to see what people's opinion is. CarolMooreDC 01:48, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
"It's obviously a rabidly pro-Israel organization whose main goal is to defame critics of Israel" - outrageously false on every level. Go to their website, you'd see articles and posts on topics relating to the UN ranging from Hugo Chavez, Syria, Cuba, China, Iran... --Activism1234 01:56, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
"NPOV" "WP:RSN" - understand that the NGO was simply taking what Richard Falk wrote on his blog. I included a reference to Falk's blog, where the exact same sentence can be found. So yes, that's pretty reliable. The passage explicitly stated something alon the lines of "The NGO UN Watch criticized..." which is of course true, since they did criticize and condemn it. --Activism1234 01:51, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
Remember, like any NGO, we're not taking what they write and use it as a fact. NGO's often have political biases, or view things in different ways than someone else. It's reported as "According to X, da da da..." And there is no doubt that that sentence is true. To remove this NGO from the article would make users extremely confused, as it was UN Watch that spotted the cartoon controversy in 2011, resulting in condemnations from Navi Pillay, PM Cameron, etc. --Activism1234 01:54, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
I'll take out rabidly. Shouldn't have had another cup of coffee. But the seems like far too much of this article quotes this pro-Israel advocacy group. I don't remember all that last time I looked. I can see you are a relatively new editor and not aware that we aren't supposed to create attack articles on living people (or dead ones). I don't know why the articles about Jewish critics of Israel always have far more hostile rhetoric (that often goes on and one) than the articles on David Duke or Hitler. Very strange. CarolMooreDC 02:01, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
As far as I know, Richard Falk is not Jewish [update: seems he was, but he defined himself as assimilated and rejecting ethnic side of Jew, although none of this had any impact on my edit, I didn't even know that before]. But now that you've raised the issue and deleted the section, I took a look over it, and if you want to compromise, I'm willing to remove the 2012 blog post controversy unless it's reported by a media outlet, as the cartoon controversy was, since I can see that being WP:Notability, and as you said, the rhetoric here about any argument will get so hot and long and probably little will be accomplished (on both sides). Also, there was already a talk discussion about whether UN Watch is a reliable source. You can see it here. --Activism1234 02:08, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
Edit conflict again. I was writing on why both should be out:
This diff is removal of material which does not add new information except that a group that has criticized him on UN issues now criticizes him on other issues without mentioning relevance to UN. That’s called “piling on.”
This diff I removed a section called “controversy” that is a controversy simply created by UN Watch and handled with totally overblown rhetoric (and obviously the reason the word “rabid” came to mind.) “Mr. Falk effectively provides an international warrant for terrorism, employing the language and logic used by those who carry out attacks against Jewish community centers, synagogues and schools worldwide." I’m sure he merely was slightly imprecise in his language and meant to say organized groups and lobbies (which are just a small and not necessarily representative sample of Jews).
Also you are right that since the cartoon controversy was covered by WP:RS it is acceptable and I had no problem with it last time around (though it might be a bit long.) CarolMooreDC 02:19, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
What I was referring to was the second one, where I said I'd agree to it being kept out for now, unless it's mentioned in some RS media outlets, which I don't think it is currently. As for the first one though, I felt it would be appropriate because that was actual controversy that gained a lot of attention and a lot of conflict, so I felt adding their response to it (but again, writing it as "The NGO UN Watch..." just like we would for something say "Human Rights Watch" says, or even the International Red Cross says) would be appropriate. I don't think it matters whether they criticize him in regards to the UN or not, they criticized him because he's part of the UN and made these statements, and anyways the article is about Richard Falk, not Richard Falk in the UN. I mean look, I don't know you that much, but you've engaged in a much more polite discussion than other editors with opposing views, and I'm so busy in my real life to waste time on a trivial Wikipedia arguments about whether an additional two sentences should be added, that I just can't keep it up and go at it. So I gave my opinion, and that's all. If you agree, go ahead and put it back in. If not, maybe some other editors can comment here, but otherwise I'm not going to continue it or go crazy. --Activism1234 02:27, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
A. If it's reported by RS it can go in the article even if some editor think it's "piling on".
B. Did an editor just seriously say she thinks she knows what the subject of this article meant and that's a reason to keep information out of the article? No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 02:30, 26 July 2012 (UTC)
A. WP:NPOV applies to WP:BLP. That's why we have WP:BLP Noticeboard so other editors can opine if this is unnecessary piling on. :So as for whether including UN Watch hyperbole on Falk blog entry is "piling on," given the lack of other's input, I'd say we should bring it to either WP:BLP.
B. I struck my gratuitous opinion.
C. I had to leave desk for 10 minutes before explaining that the more accurate subject heading used elsewhere is "Accusations of antisemitism" (as usually spelled on Wikipedia). I don't know if secondary sources call these "controversies" so removed from subheading. Certainly putting in both WP:Undue. CarolMooreDC 17:47, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

Fairly appalling article as it stands I'm afraid. Carolmooredc's comment that there are more accusations of antisemitism here than there are in the Hitler article is very telling. I recommend the first step to getting this article back to conforming with NPOV and BLP policies would be to strip out all the smears that have been made directly by advocacy organizations. All smear type allegations should be reported by third party RS to warrant inclusion.

Bias

Carol, you merged the content with the edit summary: merge "bias" section (which is about that report...). Conveniently, you also opted to remove the comments of Susan Rice who stated that Mr. Falk has been throughout his tenure "highly biased and made offensive statements, including outrageous comments on the 9/11 attacks," during his time as UN special rapporteur. Do you agree that Rice is not just referring to this report but his tenure in general, and if so, why was this content removed with an edit summary stating that the accusations of bias only relate to this report? You clearly read this material seeing as you then removed it, so I am struggling how this conforms with your edit summary explanation. Ankh.Morpork 14:15, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

The material I took out was both WP:Undue and redundant of criticisms in the article. This is a Biography of living persons, not a place to promote partisan viewpoints.
See Wikipedia:BLP#Due_weight: Criticism and praise should be included if they can be sourced to reliable secondary sources, so long as the material is presented responsibly, conservatively, and in a disinterested tone. Do not give disproportionate space to particular viewpoints; the views of tiny minorities should not be included at all. Care must be taken with article structure to ensure the overall presentation and section headings are broadly neutral. Beware of claims that rely on guilt by association, and biased or malicious content.
The same goes for all the detail in the dog section which is very large and I think I'll also cut down by about half (using same refs). Do I really have to go to WP:BLPN (noticeboard) to deal with this? CarolMooreDC 16:37, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Hopefully I won't be hurricane powerless early next week. If so, will be looking forward to a response when I return :-) CarolMooreDC 22:58, 27 October 2012 (UTC)