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Dear Louis Proyect,

Let me begin by writing that I am a long time subscriber to your website.  I 
have considerable respect for your work, your rigor, and your conviction.  On 
the matter of Syria, you have been a beacon of light from the onset.

I do have one suggestion: tone down the personal vituperation that creeps into 
your postings.  For example, in your posting below, you conclude by writing, "I 
hope you are getting paid well enough by the Kremlin to assuage your 
conscience.”  This is completely gratuitous.  Let your robust argument do the 
talking.  By adding the last sentence, you deflect attention from your 
argument, and by the inclusion of the last sentence, you needlessly insinuate 
an ad hominem attack that no doubt surely inclines Mr. Hirthler to be even less 
disposed to consider your case.  However tempting it is to include ad hominem 
attacks, they have to be subordinated to the higher task of persuasion. 

Dick Taylor
> On Jan 7, 2017, at 11:51 AM, Louis Proyect via Marxism 
> <marxism@lists.csbs.utah.edu> wrote:
> 
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> 
> Jason Hirthler,
> 
> In your Counterpunch article, you write about the ethnic cleansing of East 
> Aleppo:
> 
> "What else do you call it when a democratically-chosen government clears a 
> city of an invading army?"
> 
> Who in the fuck are you kidding?
> 
> The current government in Syria owes its existence to a military coup that 
> took place in 1970. After Hafez al-Assad died, his son Bashar became 
> president with votes of 99.7% and 97.6% support in the 2000 and 2007 
> elections, the sort of results that would turn Mayor Daley green with envy. 
> Except they weren't actually elections. They were referenda on whether you 
> support the only candidate running. You might be aware that Syria is a 
> one-party state. If you are not aware of that fact, I might excuse you for 
> being in over your head writing about Syria. If you are aware of that fact 
> and despite that insist on writing such bilge, I hope you are getting paid 
> well enough by the Kremlin to assuage your conscience.
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