The president of the Institute wrote:
We appreciate that your views have been controversial and are likely to remain so; we believe that controversies such as these, when conducted in a spirit of civility and reasoned inquiry, are essential to intellectual progress, and are to be welcomed rather than feared.
In your application and in our recent conversations, you envisioned joining AEI in the autumn. I understand that subsequent political developments in
may lead you to wish to accelerate the date of your appointment. If that is the case, I will be happy to work with you to arrange a starting date that accommodates your new circumstances. Let me add that I have been deeply angered by the unfair and partisan attacks that have been leveled against you and have admired your courage and forthrightness in the face of this hounding. Holland
"unfair and partisan attacks", "houndings"... what strong language!
Is he correct in saying that debate and being controversial is something to be feared in the Netherlands?
UPDATE 18 May 2006
US Undersecretary of State Robert Zoellick just said today in Den Haag that "[AhA] is a courageous and impressive woman, an important person from whom we can still learn from in the United States". So she is more than welcome.