Michael van der Galien

Student Kills Middle East Studies Professor

Posted on December 27 2009 5:25 am
Michael van der Galien was born in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden in 1984. For as long as he can remember, he has been obsessed with the United States. When he was 17 years old, he started blogging - of course about America. His articles have been published at Big Hollywood, Pajamas Media, Hot Air (the GreenRoom) and Right Across The Atlantic. He's also an editor for the Dutch conservative blog, De Dagelijkse Standaard.
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Richard T. Antoun, 77, a professor emeritus of anthropology at Binghamton University, was murdered in his office yesterday, stabbed four times with a 6-inch kitchen knife. This atrocity recalls that, in addition to the figurative brickbats that go with the subject, Middle East studies has a lethal edge.

Abdulsalam S. Al-Zahrani, a 46-year-old Saudi student working on a doctoral thesis in cultural anthropology, “Sacred Voice, Profane Sight: The Senses, Cosmology, and Epistemology in Early Arabic Culture,” was charged with second-degree murder. Antoun sat on Zahrani’s dissertation committee and the two knew each other. His motives are not yet surmised: the district attorney in Broome County, where the murder took place, asserted that there was “no indication of religious or ethnic motivation” in the killing. Roommates of the accused describe him as obsessed with death and of behaving “like a terrorist”.

More at Middle East Forum.

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