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International Responsibilities Task Force
of the American Library Association's
Social Responsibilities Round Table

Resolution Against the Use of Racist Training Materials by the U.S. Military
 
NOTE: The following resolution was adopted unanimously by the elected representatives of the Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) on June 26, 2004. SRRT is a body within the American Library Association but does not and should not be taken to speak for the Association as a whole. In this resolution SRRT speaks only on its own behalf.

 

Whereas respected news organizations, including the New Yorker magazine and the Guardian newspaper, have documented the extensive use of Raphael Patai's The Arab Mind by Defense Department policymakers and as part of various curricula used for training U.S. military personnel;

 

And whereas this book is full of racially charged stereotypes and generalizations and presents an overwhelmingly negative picture of Arab people;

 

And whereas revelations of torture and abuse in U.S.-run detention centers in Iraq, Afghanistan and Cuba have demonstrated the pervasiveness of a racist, dehumanizing mentality among U.S. military personnel interacting with Arab people;

 

And whereas Manning Marable, Director of African American Studies at Columbia University, and the organization Racism Watch have called upon the U.S. President to issue an order that The Arab Mind no longer be used within any branch of the U.S. government, and have furthermore called for a Congressional investigation into the curricula being used in the military and other government departments interacting with Arab countries;

 

Therefore be it resolved that the Social Responsibilities Round Table of the American Library Association expresses its strong support for the effort by Professor Marable and Racism Watch to end the use of overtly racist training materials by the U.S. military;

 

And be it further resolved that the Social Responsibilities Round Table condemns the use of racist training materials and all racist indoctrination by the U.S. military;

 

And be it further resolved that this resolution be distributed to Racism Watch, all members of Congress, and the library press.

 


Sources:

Racism Watch Press Release, http://www.racismwatch.org/pressreleases.html

Brian Whitaker, "Its best use is as a doorstop", Guardian, May 24, 2004,
http://www.guardian.co.uk/elsewhere/journalist/story/0,7792,1223525,00.html

Seymour Hersh, "The Grey Zone", New Yorker, May 24, 2004,
http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?040524fa_fact




Page last modified August 17, 2004.