Last week on the radio show Democracy Now, author Alan Dershowitz attempted to defend his new book "The Case for Israel" against claims by Professor Norman G. Finkelstein that the book is a "hoax" and contains wholesale plagiarism from another book "From Time Immemorial", which Dr. Finkelstein has proved to be a hoax (misuse of fabricated and false and distorted historical information to make a lying case for the Zionist cause).
Interestingly, Professor Dershowitz appears to be a man with a schizophrenic sense of morality. Dershowitz condemned O.J. Simpson but holds up Ariel Sharon to be a hero. The difference between Ariel Sharon and O.J. Simpson is only a matter of degree of evil — O.J. Simpson is literally a bumbling amateur, while Ariel Sharon is a hardened professional evildoer. If Ariel Sharon had been in O.J. Simpson’s shoes, he would not only have brutally murdered Nicole and Ron, but he would have sent bulldozers to destroy the houses of their relatives and helicopter gun-ships to assassinate any protestors to all the above evil deeds.
But back to Alan Dershowitx. Dershowitz made a prior public bet, and reiterated it on the Democracy Now show, that he would pay $10,000 in the name of the PLO to anyone who could prove a factual error in his book "The Case for Israel". Dr. Finkelstein had Dershowitz restate the bet, and the rhetoric is recorded for posterity on the websites of both Democracy Now (http://www.democracynow.org ) and Dr. Finkelstein (http://www.normanfinkelstein.com ). Dr. Finkelstein took up Dershowitz on his bet, and asked that the $10,000 be earmarked for the inhabitants of Jenin, the town in Palestine, which was brutally assaulted by Israeli terrorist troops months ago.
Pay up, Mr. Dershowitz, you lost your bet!
Anyone can read the transcripts of the radio conversation on the sites listed above and see that Alan Dershowitz lost the bet on his own terms. Dershowitz claimed there were no factual errors in his book. Finkelstein demonstrated several factual errors, including Dershowitz’ misrepresentation of author Bennie Morris’ material in his quotation of the numbers of Palestinians said to have been driven from their homes by order of Palestinian authorities. The actual numbers are irrelevant to Mr. Dershowitz’ bet. The fact is that Dershowitz cited Morris, and did so erroneously. When Dershowitz cited Morris, Dershowitz made the error of citing Morris’ figures mistakenly.
Instead of acknowledging his factual errors, Dershowitz has tried to "explain" his errors. Dershowitz said on Democracy Now, that there had to be two possible "explanations" for his factual error in the Morris citation. Fine! But Dershowitz bet never stated that the bet was canceled unless Dershowitz could not provide some sort of explanation! The very fact that Dershowitz began fishing for explanations on the radio program is PROOF that factual errors occur in his book! If there had been no factual errors, there would be no "need" to fish for explanations.
Dershowitz also tried to argue ex post facto that the factual errors in his book would also be logical errors in his own arguments, which may be true. Thus, unwittingly, Dershowitz exposes not only his poor fact searching, but his poor argumentation as well. The errors are compounded by Dershowitz own admission, and thus further call into question his scholarship.
Perhaps Alan Dershowitz should stick to legal matters, of which he presumably has some expertise, rather than engaging in book writing; of which his principal expertise appears to be plagiarism.
Dr., Finkelstein has successfully demonstrated a whole list of factual errors in the book "The Case for Israel". And Dr. Finkelstein thus won the bet.
Pay up, Alan Dershowitz — the bet was entirely your idea. You claimed no factual errors, but your book is full of them; and all of them belie the very premise of your book.
Pay up Mr. Dershowitz — the people of Jenin need the money.