´Prof. Netanyahu Should Have Been Awarded the Israel Prize´ (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Elad Benari 04/30/12)
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Yossi Achimeir, Director of the Jabotinsky Center, said that Prof.
Benzion Netanyahu, the prime minister´s father who passed away at the
age of 102 on Monday, should have been awarded the Israel Prize for
his important research.
Achimeir told Arutz Sheva that Prof. Netanyahu had been “excluded by
the Israeli academia and was not recognized by the academics in
Israel his entire life.” When Prof. Netanyahu turned 100 two years
ago, Achimeir sent a letter to the committee that decides on the
winners of the Israel Prize, suggesting that the prize be awarded to
Netanyahu to mark his 100th year. He said that he never heard back
from the committee.
“If anyone deserved the Israel Prize it was Benzion Netanyahu,” said
Achimeir, noting that one reason that Prof. Netanyahu did not receive
the prize may have been a fear by those who award it that people
might say he received it because he is the prime minister’s father.
He added that this reason is unjustified, in his opinion.
On the flip side, Achimeir noted, while Prof. Netanyahu was excluded
by the Israeli academia, he was greatly appreciated around the world.
One example of this was in his monumental research work about the
Inquisition, called “The Origins of the Inquisition in Fifteenth
Century Spain”, which was translated into various languages and
distributed in several editions around the world.
Among his many academic achievements, Prof. Netanyahu was one of the
chief editors of the Encyclopaedia Hebraica and served as professor
of Hebrew language and literature and professor of medieval Jewish
history and Hebrew literature in several universities in the U.S.
“There were receptions for him all over the world, he was given
respect around the world, and only here he was ignored,” Achimeir
said, adding that he believes this was because Netanyahu “bothered
some of the inhabitants of the academic ivory tower, partly because
of his political views and his adherence to Jabotinsky´s teachings,
the doctrine of political Zionism.”
Achimeir added that Prof. Netanyahu never sought the respect he did
not get in Israel. “He was not looking to be recognized here. He had
a place in universities in the United States. There, he wrote his
research and made his views public without fear. He was not looking
for respect and honor but for depth and honesty.”
He said that he believes this can be corrected after Netanyahu’s
death, if his works are taught and republished. “This is a great man
whose absence will be felt,” concluded Achimeir. (IsraelNationalNews
© 2012 04/30/12)
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