Thursday, November 21, 2002

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

The Daily Gazette
Swarthmore College
Thursday, November 21, 2002
Volume 7, Number 54

Write to us!
Photo of the day:

Today’s issue:


1) Wise speaks on Zionism, Israel/Palestine conflict to packed

2) Students discuss proposed changes to PDCs, first-year seminars

3) ITS & Earthlust launch ‘Paper Conservation Campaign’

4) World news roundup

5) Campus events


1) Upcoming contests


Today: Cloudy with showers late. High near 55.
Just one more week until Turkey Day!

Tonight: Cloudy and wet. Low near 47.
Whether you’re a fan of the bird or a fan of the curd…

Tomorrow: Possible rain. Highs in the low 50s.
…two days off is definitely something to be thankful for!


Lunch: Tortellini with rose sauce, foccacia, Indian-style chick peas,
crinkle-cut carrots, zucchini italiano, fajita bar, lemon bars

Dinner: Salsa chicken, Spanish rice, boca burgers, eggplant parmesan, tex
mex cauliflower, Thai bar, ice cream bar


1) Wise speaks on Zionism, Israel/Palestine conflict to packed

by Roxanne Yaghoubi
Gazette Reporter

Tim Wise, billed as an “anti-racist activist and writer,” gave a talk on
Wednesday night in the Scheuer Room to a standing-room only crowd of more
than 150 people. His talk on Zionism from a dissident Jew’s perspective
dealt with his experiences with both white anti-racist work and the conflict
in Israel/Palestine. After an introduction by Sarah Wood ’04, Wise began his
almost two-hour-long lecture.

He first talked about popular misunderstandings surrounding the words
“Zionist” and “anti-Semitic.”  Wise argued that “anti-Semitic” has
traditionally been used incorrectly to denote the concept of being
“anti-Jewish” (which, it should be noted, he denied himself to be). In terms
of “Zionism,” Wise suggested that the philosophy behind the word was based
on the idea that Jews needed to be protected. However, Wise argued that such
an idea is incompatible with modern “Zionist” arguments for the support of
Israel, given that Israel is such a tiny state and is surrounded by hostile

Furthermore, Wise claimed that the founding of Israel was not a religious
act, and in fact, Theodor Herzl and Chaim Weizmann, both prominent Zionist
leaders before WWII, were not religious men. Wise further argued that these
leaders rejected Britain’s offer to evacuate Jewish-German children to the
UK, instead believing that it was better to “have half of the Jewish
children sent to Israel than all of the children sent to Britain.” Wise
argued that this statement showed that these leaders were willing to put the
interests of Israel above the protection of their own children.

However, Wise did not solely blast Zionist leaders.  Indeed, much of his
criticism was reserved for America.

Wise expressed contempt for US politicians for their continued support of
Israel, and for allowing fundamentlist regimes to come to power in the Arab
states. He argued that this was particularly true of Richard Nixon, who
despite his personal dislike of Jews, provided support for Israel through
the regional spheres of influence plan – which was put into place to protect
US oil interests in the region.

Another unlikely alliance that has emerged, Wise argued, is the one between
fundamentalist Christian groups and ardent Zionists. He argued that this
alliance is deeply flawed since such Christians believe their religion to be
the only true faith, and thus, are implicitly anti-Jewish.

Following his talk, Wise conducted a question-and-answer session, fielding
queries from about 10 students, faculty, staff and other community members.

Though many of the people in attendance seemed to agree with Wise’s
generally controversial points, there were also a number of dissenters. For
instance, members of the student group Im Tirtsu: Zionists for a Two-State
Solution dispensed literature outside the lecture and asked questions
critiquing the veracity of many of Wise’s statements.


2) Students discuss proposed changes to PDCs, first-year

by Greg Leiserson
Gazette Reporter

Attendees at the Student Council and Council on Educational Policy (CEP)
fireside chat in Kohlberg Coffee Bar Wednesday expressed a general feeling
of approval for the idea of eliminating the Primary Distribution Course
(PDC) requirements, but seemed slightly more skeptical of proposals to
implement a first-year seminar (FYS) program and a writing-intensive course
(WIC) program. Erica Kaufman ’03 of CEP and Lester Tran ’03, the Educational
Policy Representative for Student Council, facilitated the discussion.

The facilitators explained that the proposal to eliminate the PDC program
has come about from an increasing impression that there is little
consistency in what constitutes a PDC across department lines and a general
feeling on the part of the students that the requirements force them to take
courses they are not interested in. Nevertheless, the proposal to eliminate
the PDC program would still require that students take three courses in each
of the three disciplines and that they take at least two of them in
different departments.

Students at the fireside chat generally agreed that they did not feel that
the PDC program had improved the quality of their experiences at Swarthmore.
Additionally, they noted that the PDCs they had taken did not consistently
require more writing, which is one of the frequently cited goals of the

Being considered separately, the proposal to create first-year seminars met
with a somewhat lukewarm response from participants. The FYS program is
partly a response to arguments that first-year students find themselves
primarily in large lecture courses and do not experience the close
interaction with faculty they might desire.

The seminars would be optional and would be strictly limited to 12 students.
While no students expressed dislike for the idea, many suggested that it
seemed largely the same as the current system used by some departments.  For
instance, the physics department currently offers a program whereby
first-year students can enter the curriculum through either a lecture-based
class or one in a seminar format, while history presents a variety of
first-year seminars through which students can quickly become involved in
the department.

Lester Tran suggested that the proposal on the table is less a proposal to
force students and departments to become involved in seminars, but one to
put firm college support behind an existing commitment to offer such
programs as an option for interested students.

The writing-intensive course program met with the most criticism, but there
is not yet a concrete proposal for such a program since the Writing Program
Task Force is still working on creating one. As such, Kaufman and Tran were
unable to provide specific details about what a program would look like.

The CEP has been discussing the issues for over a year now and are working
on final proposals to submit to the faculty on the issues of first-year
seminars and PDCs. Tran predicted that there would likely be amendments made
to the proposals by the faculty, but if approved, they could be in place as
soon as the fall of 2004.

Both Kaufman and Tran urged students with strong opinions on the topic to
get in touch with members of the CEP soon, because once the proposals reach
the faculty, there will no longer be much of an opportunity for student


3) ITS & Earthlust launch ‘Paper Conservation Campaign’

from Information Technology Services

* What is the Paper Conservation Campaign?

Information Technology Services and Earthlust challenge you to print less to
conserve paper in the coming semesters. Learn about paper use on campus and
what you can do to be an environmentally responsible user of technology.

Key to this campaign is the new Paper Tracker site, showing daily graphs of
the printing levels of the McCabe, Beardsley and Cornell labs and the Dorm
printers.  These stats can be viewed online at

With your help, we can lower our printing output and paper waste.

* Why should you care?

The public printers print well over 150,000 sheets a month. That’s over
5,000 pages a day, and most of the pages are immediately put into recycling
bins. Even though we buy paper with high post-consumer recycled content, the
best way to reduce environmental impact is simply by printing less.

Although paper is cheap, it is not the only cost involved in printing. The
college spends tens of thousands of dollars in paper, toner, and equipment
costs, but all of the upkeep costs are related to the number of pages

How many times have you found yourself standing in front of the printer,
wondering if your one-page paper will ever come out? When people send
unnecessarily large print jobs and multiple copies to the printers, it
wastes the time of everyone else who is waiting to print. Also, many people
mistakenly assume that when their print job does not emerge from the printer
immediately, it is gone, so they send it again. This vicious cycle leads to
more wasted paper and more time waiting for jobs.

* What can you do?

Print only what you need. ITS lab consultants dump stacks of abandoned
printouts every day, documents that are sent to the printer but never picked

Print one copy only. The printers are not intended to be used as copy
machines. There are copy machines available in the libraries. Please do not
abuse your free printing privileges by printing multiple copies of a
document. This is also inconsiderate to other users of the labs.

Don’t re-use paper. Laser printing is a high-heat process. Running
pre-printed pages back through a laser printer can damage the printer as
dried ink is re-melted and deposited on internal parts.

Recycle. But, recycling is not the only solution. Making recycled paper
still requires the use of toxic chemicals that produce pollutants, and
chemical and solid waste. The best strategy is to use less paper to begin

We hope you’ll join us in helping to reduce paper consumption on campus,
starting in the labs. Spread the word and watch your progress at


4) World news roundup

* On the eve of a two-day NATO summit, President Bush called upon the
leaders of Europe to support America in its aggressive approach towards
dealing with Iraq.  It is expected that NATO will endorse the
recently-approved UN Resolution, which calls upon Iraqi leader Saddam
Hussein to present the UN with a full accounting of his weapons of mass
destruction by Dec. 8th, but individual nations will still be free to agree
with or dissent from America’s foreign policy plans.  Meanwhile, Bush has
provided his approval for an enlargement of NATO to include seven formerly
communist states: Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia
and Slovenia.  Additionally, NATO is looking to create a new anti-terrorism
task force in response to the latest geopolitical trends.

* Scientists announced the creation of a vaccine yesterday that has thus far
proven 100% effective in fighting one of the viruses that cause cervical
cancer.  Unlike most cancers, which are attributed to genetic mutations and
certain environmental conditions, cervical cancer has been linked to the
human papilloma virus, contracted through sex.  Thus, the new vaccine
targets one strain of the virus that causes half of the cases of cervical
cancer.  While more testing is needed, it is believed that the vaccine could
reach the market in five years.  Meanwhile, Some 450,000 women around the
world are inflicted each year, with half of those cases being fatal.
Although a relatively small proportion of those cases occur in the US,
thanks to widespread Pap test screening, cervical cancer is the leading
cancer killer of women in the developing world.

* A new 52-story skyscraper will be built upon the grounds of 7 World Trade
Center – one of the smaller buildings to collapse in the 9/11 attacks.  The
building, which is scheduled to open in 2005 at a cost of $800 million, is
five stories taller than its predecessor and will feature wider staircases,
greater fireproofing and enhanced emergency communications system.  Although
the plans for the Twin Towers site, which lies across the street from this
building, will not be finalized until next year, the architect has said that
this plan will be a model for the larger reconstruction.


5) Campus events

Psychology Talk: Geff Cohen, Yale University
Scheuer Room – Kohlberg, 4:00 p.m.

Econ Lecture
Kohlberg 334, 4:00 p.m.

MSA DESHI Joint Discussion
Kohlberg 115, 7:00 p.m.

College Bowl Meeting
Kohlberg 202, 7:00 p.m.

Aikido Club Practice
Wrestling Room – Lamb-Miller Field House, 7:00 p.m.

Folk Dance Class
Upper Tarble, 7:30 p.m.

Deshi Mehndi Night
Parrish Parlor-West, 8:00 p.m.

Feminist Majority Meeting
Parrish Parlor-East, 9:00 p.m.

TONIGHT: George Walumoli of Uganda will speak about the promotion of the
Friends Peace Teams’ African Great Lakes Initiative of the Alternative to
Violence Project and other Quaker peace projects in the Great Lakes Region
of Africa.

7:30 PM in the Rushmore Room, Swarthmore Friends Meeting



1) Upcoming contests

There are no contests scheduled for today.

Women’s basketball hosts Juanita (Tip-Off Tournament), 6:00 p.m.
Men’s basketball vs. Redlands (@ Haverford’s Equinox Classic), 6:00 p.m.



“When they discover the center of the universe, a lot of people will be
disappointed to discover they are not it.”
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