I worry about what Don Graham, EJ Dionne, and David Ignatius owe ‘seminal’ Marty Peretz

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Former deputy attorney general Jamie Gorelick took off a day from defending BP to send out this email appeal for a Harvard fund in Marty Peretz’s name. Oh and other signatories are Don Graham of the Washington Post, Al Gore, Ed Zwick the filmmaker, Amy Gutmann the president of the University of Pennsylvania, and columnists David Ignatius and EJ Dionne.

Mike Kinsley once said, with typical brilliance, that it didn’t matter if he took a junket from AIPAC, they hadn’t gotten to him re Israel–people should worry about the power Marty Peretz had over what he wrote; it was Marty’s wrath that Kinsley feared. E tu Ignatius and Dionne and Graham? Gorelick’s email (excerpted):

Dear Friends,

For those of us fortunate enough to know Marty Peretz as a teacher, a colleague, a mentor, or a friend (or any combination), the opportunity to express our appreciation for all that he has done is presented: the 50th anniversary of the Social Studies Program at Harvard – where he was such a seminal force.

Some of Marty’s former students, his friends, business colleagues, fellow faculty and journalists are going to be endowing the Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund, "in honor of Dr. Martin Peretz, AM 1965, PHD 1966, an inspiring teacher, mentor, and scholar who was an architect and steward of the Social Studies program from the 1960s through the early 1990s." The purpose of the Fund is "to strengthen the College’s commitment to rigorous intellectual inquiry through significant research experiences." The Fund will support undergraduate thesis research, special projects and the kinds of intellectual inquiry that Marty encouraged in his students. We will honor Marty at the 50th anniversary celebration in Cambridge on September 25, 2010. 

Several of us have gotten together to collect the initital funds to jumpstart the effort, but we are eager to have as many as possible of Marty’s friends, students, former protégés, and colleagues contribute at whatever level you can – the number of contributors will mean the most to him, we are confident, while each contribution will grow the fund to a meaningful size. We will list all contributors (names, not gifts) as part of the presentation to Marty this fall. These gifts can count toward a class gift if you plan to make one by June 30, 2011.

…If you wish to make a gift online directly, please visit http://alumni.harvard.edu/givenow, find the shield for "College" and click "Give Now". Fill out the electronic form and select the following: 

"Gift Designation" should be marked as "Unrestricted" Under "Additional Information" please type "Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund"

We look forwaing [sic] to seeing you in September.

With thanks and best wishes for a wonderful summer,

Bill Ackman, Michael Alter, Linc Caplan, Gerry Cardinale, Susan Carney, Jim Cramer, Alan Dershowitz, EJ Dionne, John Driscoll, Daniel Dusek, Dan Ertel, Joe Finder, Frank Foer, Donald Gogel, Russell Goldsmith, Al Gore, Jamie Gorelick, Larry Grafstein, Don Graham, Marc Granetz, Amy Gutmann, Glenn Hutchins, David Ignatius, Janno Lieber, Donal Logue, Charles Nesson, Fern Nesson, Rob Oden, Steve Pinker, Lisbet Rausing, Henry Rosovsky, Nitza Rosovsky, Abigail Thernstrom, Stephan Thernstrom, Craig Turk, Sherry Turkle, Judith Walzer, Michael Walzer, Rich Waldhorn, Leon Wieseltier, Tom Williamson, Juan Carlos Zarate, Leonard Zax, Edward Zwick, and Jesse Zwick

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