Updated: May 30, 2008 added Democracy Now video.
By Yossi Melman, Haaretz Correspondent
The Shin Bet security service detained and deported an American Jewish professor who is a prominent critic of the Israeli occupation when he landed at Ben-Gurion International Airport on Friday.
Professor Norman Finkelstein was interrogated for several hours and held in an airport cell before being put on a plane back to Amsterdam, his point of departure. Finkelstein said he was told he could not return to Israel for 10 years.
The Shin Bet said Finkelstein “is not permitted to enter Israel because of suspicions involving hostile elements in Lebanon,” and because he “did not give a full accounting to interrogators with regard to these suspicions.”
Norman Finkelstein deported from Israel
by Eli Senyor and Adva Naftali
Controversial US academic held overnight at Ben Gurion airport for questioning, denied entry due to ‘security considerations’
Israel deported Jewish-American Professor Norman Finkelstein to the United States on Friday after questioning him at Ben Gurion airport. Finkelstein was denied entry due to “security concerns,” authorities said.
Finkelstein was detained immediately after landing in Israel late Thursday night and was questioned at the airport before being told he could not enter Israel.
“Finkelstein was boarded onto a plane back the United States before dawn. When he arrived we will decide whether to appeal this decision,” his attorney, Michael Sfard, told Ynet. Sfard said the entry ban could last 10 years.
“A country that starts to fear what its harshest critics write about it is a country that is already behaving in a manner reminiscent of the darkest days of the communist regime,” said Sfard.
Finkelstein, the son of a Holocaust survivor, has written extensively regarding Israel’s policies in the territories and accuses Israel of manipulating the memory of the Holocaust and present-day anti-Semitism to justify illegitimate policies.
Israel bans Norman Finkelstein for 10 years from Israel
Added: May 30, 2008
Israel Bars One of its Most Prominent Critics, Norman Finkelstein, for Ten Years
Norman Finkelstein was arrested and deported from Israel last week and told he’s barred for ten years. Finkelstein is known as one of the most prominent academic critics of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. We speak to Finkelstein and the human rights worker he was on his way to visit, Musa Abu Hashhash.