Former Colo. U. prof defends his work

March 24, 2009 at 6:41 PM

DENVER, March 24 (UPI) -- A controversial former University of Colorado professor, acting as a witness in his wrongful firing lawsuit, Tuesday denied violating scholarly norms.

A lawyer for the university grilled Ward Churchill about allegations that he ghost-wrote work for other scholars and then cited them to back up his own research, The New York Times reported. Churchill, under questioning by Patrick O'Rourke, said that the practice is common in the academic world.

"The only evidence we've heard from anyone other than you about this scholarly practice, is from 20 people tenured at CU, all of whom say this is wrong," O'Rourke said.

Churchill, who specialized in American Indian studies, became notorious after he referred to victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in an essay as "Little Eichmanns." He was dismissed in 2007 for plagiarism and falsifying research.

Churchill said Monday that his comments on the 2001 attacks were a criticism of U.S. foreign policy, the Denver Post reported.

"I had a real simple proposition: That if you make a practice of killing other people's babies for personal gain, comfortability, quality of life, that eventually they're going to give you a taste of the same thing," Churchill testified.

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