Response to Bush/CIA Spying Allegations by the University of Michigan

U-M responds to bloggergate:


University of Michigan, Office of the Vice President for Communications, Public Affairs:

Academic Freedom

June 17, 2011

In response to recent media accounts referencing Professor Juan Cole the University of Michigan has shared the following statement by U-M Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Phil Hanlon:

Professor Cole is a renowned Middle East scholar and popular teacher. He is a long time valued member of the university community.

In addition to his scholarly work, Professor Cole is active in the public arena, freely sharing his views on developments in the Middle East. While Professor Cole’s views are his own, the University steadfastly and unequivocally stands behind the principles of academic freedom and freedom of expression. Free expression of views is essential to dynamic dialogue and debate.

Recently, President Coleman, Edward Rothman, Chair of the Senate Advisory Committee on Academic Affairs and I commented publicly on the University’s commitment to principle of academic freedom: [Here].

“Protecting students’ and the faculty’s right to pursue lines of inquiry and express ideas without fear of reprisal is fundamental to the University’s core missions of research and education. The pursuit of answers, however unpopular, cannot be constricted if we are to remain a place of open and vigorous debate.

The standard of academic freedom is incorporated throughout the fabric of the University. The principles of academic freedom are ones we will always uphold and defend.” (April 19, 2011)

The University will be closely watching developments in this case.

Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Responses | Print |

11 Responses

  1. Dear Mr. Cole, I believe that you should be content with being disturbed by the CIA in that way.
    Stuff happens : remember Jean Seberg or David Kelly, the British scientist who both committed suicide.
    Long live to informed comment !

  2. Dr. Cole,
    it’s only fair to let your readers know that,
    if they posted comments or sent you email,
    they too were investigated and the CIA will maintain open files on them until they die.

    • I don’t think there is any reason to believe your allegation, Brian; that would be a lot of manpower! But it is very possible that they were told to “get” other people whom the Bush White House did not like.

      • Juan, I think you may be correct. Maybe not as strong as “didn’t like”, but were worried about. There were many people under Bush that had a great deal of influence, it would not have taken much for their voices to be heard in the Bush administration.

  3. Dear Dr. Cole, Congratulations! Anyone singled out by the Bush Administration knows they must have been doing something right. Thank God for people like you.
    William T. Neely PhD

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