Thursday, Jan. 25, 2007 | While I generally agree with the context of Goldsborough’s article “San Diego State’s Turkey Trouble,” that board members should not interfere with academic content, I think the author has served the reader poorly by introducing his own spin and by cheap-shot attacks on board members as fat-cat political appointees.
He states, “Cyprus remains divided, however, largely because the Greek part of the island rejected the 2004 Annan plan for reunification, though the Turkish part accepted it.”
His article could have stood on its own two feet without this sophomoric attempt to take sides in a conflict he knows so little about.
Since this is the only causation statement presented, the typical reader, knowing zilch about Cyprus, has the immediate perception that the Greek side is responsible for the continuing partition of the island. Goldsborough, either through ignorance, laziness or willful intent, is completely silent on the history of the divided country since the attempted Greek coup and the resulting Turkish invasion of 1974, including the fact that, 32 years later, mainland Turkish troops still occupy the north, and tens of thousands of non-Cypriots have been imported from mainland Turkey and settled in the north in this ostensibly independent sovereign country.
Since the majority Greek Cypriot side wishes for reunification as much as the minority Turkish Cypriot side does (and probably more so), Goldsborough might have asked what was it about Mr. Annan’s plan that caused the Greek side to reject it? Instead he suggests that the outcome of a free vote, regardless of the details of the plan offered, determines culpability in this long and complicated conflict. Does he point the same finger at Arafat for his rejection of the Clinton plan to resolve the Israeli- Palestinian conflict?
It seems the main point of the article was well made without this sophomoric attempt to ascribe blame.
Perhaps had SDSU established a summer program on BOTH sides of the island, the students themselves would have a more balanced and insightful understanding of the issues and history of the Cyprus conflict and would be less inclined to give much weight to articles such as Goldsborough’s.
Also, one would think that that the university staff that designed the program would have more sensitivity to the politics of the situation and designed a study program that was more academically neutral.
Isn’t just such sensitivity an important ingredient underlying the process of conflict resolution?