A 46-year-old Binghamton University graduate student from Saudi Arabia was charged on Saturday with killing a retired anthropology professor, a specialist in Islamic and Middle Eastern studies with whom he had worked, the authorities said.
The student, Abdulsalam S. al-Zahrani, was charged with second-degree murder in the death of the professor, Richard T. Antoun, who was stabbed in his office in the university’s Science I building on Friday afternoon, said Gerald F. Mollen, the district attorney in Broome County. “We believe the murder weapon was recovered,” he said.
Professor Antoun, 77, received a doctorate from Harvard in 1963 and joined the Binghamton faculty in the early 1970s. He was “a sociocultural anthropologist who has conducted research among peasants in Jordan, urbanites in Lebanon, peasant farmers in Iran and migrants in Texas and Greece,” according to the university's web site. He retired in 1999 as professor emeritus.
“He dedicated his life to trying to understand the people of the Middle East,” said the professor’s sister Linda Miller, of Holden, Mass. “He never said an unkind word to anyone in his life.”
It sounds to me that the professor failed to understand Islam. I'm sure he and everyone he knows is clear on it now.
Or, perhaps the Professor did understand the cruelty that is Islam and Zharani didn't appreciate that.
Ms. Miller’s husband, the Rev. David J. Miller, said that Professor Antoun had been married to his wife, Rosalyn, for 17 years and had a son, Nicholas, 40.
In his statement, Mr. Mollen said there was “no indication of religious or ethnic motivation” in the killing. He said no other arrests were expected.