College Guide


April 24, 2013 9:51 AM Does Princeton Professor Richard Falk Actually Exist?

By Mark Kleiman

Or is he just a sick figment of Glenn Beck’s twisted imagination, in which “leftists” hate America and root for the people who kill Americans?

As faithful readers will know, I demonstrated years ago that there is no such person as “Governor Sarah Palin”; she’s just a Tina Fey character. Surely the same must be true of “Professor Richard Falk.”

Not only would an actual Princeton IR professor who had peddled the Ayatollah Khomeini to the American people as a freedom-loving friend of “moderates and progressives” have certainly shriveled up and died of shame when the truth came out, rather than writing incomprehensible tracts in self-justification, but even someone stupid enough to confuse Khomeini with George Washington couldn’t possibly have written this drivel, which mostly amounts to saying “Since I lack the guts to murder my fellow citizens, all I can do is cheer for those who have the guts, while celebrating the imaginary ‘decline’ of the country I so despise.”

Seriously. “Those to whom evil is done/Do evil in return”? What “evil” was done to the Brothers Tsarnaev by anyone in the United States? When their family was driven from Russia as part of the Chechen wars, the U.S. gave them asylum. They then turned around and murdered three people and wounded hundreds, none of whom they had ever met. Neither Israeli policy toward the Palestinians – of which I heartily disapprove – nor Falk’s loathing of Israel has anything to do with their actions. There’s simply not a word of logic in the entire piece; it’s just the script for a two minutes’ hate directed at America and Israel.

Since no one as loathsomely foolish as Falk could possibly exist, let alone get tenure at Princeton, I conclude that Falk does not, in fact, exist, and that someone at Breitbart simply invented the “Richard Falk” persona and website.

As I tried to explain to Tina Fey, you need to keep your satire within the bounds of plausibility, or it stops being funny.

[Cross-posted at The Reality-based Community]

Mark Kleiman is a professor of public policy at the University of California Los Angeles.


  • RIchar Falk on April 25, 2013 10:29 PM:

    Yes and he's a fucking idiot

  • T-Rex on April 26, 2013 12:17 PM:

    Did you read the same column I did? Because the one you link bears no resemblance to your description. Actually, it's your article that reads like a bad parody of Marty Peretz back at the days when he was using The New Republic to flog his own agenda.

    Falk never once gives any indication that he sympathizes with, let alone "cheers on" the Boston bombers. Nor does he indicate that the two men suffered any personal abuse from the United States. But he does point out that as long as Muslim civilians go on dying as "collateral damage" (read, innocent bystanders) in drone strikes, and our army remains bogged down in the bloody disaster of Afghanistan, the more blowback in the form of terrorism we'd better expect. "What evil was done to the Brothers Tsarnaev by anyone in the United States?" None -- but as we speak, men in Guantanamo are starving themselves to death rather than continue to be subjected to indefinite imprisonment without charges, without trial, and apparently without any hope of seeing their homes again. Now, if another country were doing this to Americans, wouldn't you be angry enough to want some sort of revenge? No one is justifying anything by stating the obvious -- that when the U.S. hurts people, or is complicit in it, we pay a price.

    Craptcha says "Mrs newhigni." Greetings, Mrs. Newhigni, wherever you are.