One hundred and seventy-five faculty members from Boston-area colleges met yesterday to reply to Secretary of State Dean Rusk's charges that academic critics of the Administration were "talking nonsense about the nature of the Vietnam war."
In a meeting called by the Greater Boston Faculty Committee on Vietnam, they approved the draft of a rebuttal to appear as an advertisement in the New York Times May 9. The group also discussed plans to publish a continuing series of statements about the Vietnam crisis, and seek national support to finance their efforts.
Speaking during the meeting Edwin E. Moise, James Bryant Conant Professor of Education and Mathematics, emphasized that Rusk's attack was only one of many reasons for the advertisement. "I am more concerned with the horrors of the war," he said, "than with people's foolishness."
Besides criticizing the Administration attempt to silence its critics, the advertisement will say that official justifications for the war are based on a misinterpretation of the Geneva Agreements of 1954. It will call for an immediate cease-fire and unconditional negotiations which include the Vietcong.
Cyrus Levinthal, professor of Biology at M.I.T., explained the Committee's future plans to the meeting. He said that a single statement would do little to stop the war, but hoped that a continuing effort which enlisted support from all over the country would away the Administration.
There was some disappointment that the meeting was not better attended. Mrs. Ruth D. Terzaghi, research fellow in Engineering, said that she was especially unhappy that more senior faculty members did not attend.
Moise, one of the meeting's organizers, said that the turnout wasn't bad since "we gave ourselves so little time to organize and reach people."
The meeting was chaired by Samuel H. Miller, John Lord O'Brian Professor of Divinity and Dean of the Divinity School.
Other Harvard members of the Com- mittee include George H. Williams, Hollis Professor of Divinity; Henry D. Aiken, professor of Philosophy; Ralph F. Baierlcin '58, instructor in Physics; David F. Cavers, Fessenden Professor of Law; H. Stuart Hughes, professor of History; and Everett I. Mendelsohn, assistant professor of the History of Science