THE BDS MOVEMENT – A DISTINCTLY ANTI-SEMITIC UNDERTAKING

 

 

Statement of Jewish Organizations on Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns against Israel – February 2011.

Believing that academic, cultural and commercial boycotts, divestments and sanctions of Israel are:

1. Counterproductive to the goal of peace,

2. Antithetical to freedom of speech,

3. Part of a greater effort to undermine the Jewish people’s right to self-determination in their homeland, Israel.

We, the undersigned members of the Jewish community, stand united in our condemnation of calls and campaigns for boycotting, divestment and sanctions of Israeli academic institutions, professors, products and companies that do business with Israel.

We recognize and accept that individuals and groups may have legitimate criticism of Israeli policies. Criticism becomes anti-Semitism, however, when it demonizes Israel or its leaders, denies Israel the right to defend its citizens or seeks to denigrate Israel’s right to exist.

 The BDS movement is antithetical to principles of academic freedom and discourages freedom of speech. The movement silences voices from across the Israeli political spectrum. By pursuing delegitimization campaigns on campus, proponents have provoked deep divisions among students and have created an atmosphere of intolerance and hatred.

 We oppose the extremist rhetoric of the delegitimization movement and reject calls for boycotting, divestment or sanctions against Israel. We call upon students, faculty, administrators and other campus stakeholders to uphold the academic and democratic values of a free and civil discourse that promotes peace and tolerance.

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————— 

 

AN OVERVIEW OF THE BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT & SANCTIONS (BDS) MOVEMENT

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement is a pro-Palestinian undertaking that took root following the second Palestinian Intifada in 2000 and the Durban Conference of 2001. The BDS campaign calls on the international community “to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era.”

The campaign, organized and coordinated by the Palestinian BDS National Committee1 was started on 9th July 2005 by over 170 Palestinian non-governmental organizations in support of the Palestinian cause for the boycott of Israel, disinvestment from Israel and international sanctions against Israel, citing a body of UN resolutions and specifically echoing the anti-apartheid campaigns against white minority rule in apartheid era South Africa. 2

The BDS movement, in the eyes of very many people, is a veiled, but unmistakable device in a global effort to delegitimize and anathematize Israel. The BDS movement is essentially rooted in what many scholars refer to as the “new anti-Semitism,” whereby anti-Semites target the nation of Israel, and Jews in general, for isolation from cultural, economic and in some cases, religious perspectives.

Proponents of the BDS program seek to copycat the 1980’s campaigns against South Africa apartheid. They posit that Israeli policies toward Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and West Bank are similar to the strategies employed by the apartheid regime that governed South Africa. The BDS movement, its supporters say, is necessary in order to effect a dismantling of the apartheid like nation of Israel. Apart from demanding the “divestment” of educational, municipal, religious and other investment portfolios from organizations that supposedly aid and abet Israel’s “occupation of Palestinian territory,” the BDS campaign’s mission includes the boycotting of Israeli products, professionals, professional associations, academic institutions, and local and international artistic performances.

Critics argue that the BDS movement disincentives the Palestinian leadership from negotiating with Israel at present 3 and that it is anti-Semitic 4, 5 in the form its opposition to Zionism takes in resembling historic boycotts such as the Nazi boycott of Jewish businesses 6 and in promoting the de-legitimization of Israel.7

The author disagrees in no small measure with the BDS movement and its mission, which, although at first glance to the unwary observer may seem to be legitimate, is an undertaking engrained in misconception, deceit and outright hatred for a group of people by the program’s anti-Semitic initiators. It is unfortunate many non-Palestinian organizations, including numerous mainstream Christian establishments, choose to disregard and/or misinterpret their faith’s foundational teachings and lend credence to revisionist rantings and claims of hatemongers and insatiable land grabbers (Arabs and Muslims) who are the real occupiers of other people’s territory and who, in totality, inhabit over 99.8 percent of Middle Eastern land.

The contention by Palestinians, Arabs and their supporters that Israel is guilty of “apartheid like practices” is a moot consideration if only because of the fact that Israelis are not “occupiers” of the Judea and Samaria regions. Revisionist historians, fueled by bias against Israel and Jews, and without ample substantiation of their ludicrous allegations, peddle a gargantuan lie about true ownership of the Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) territories. Jews have been associated with the “West Bank” for over three thousand years. Incidentally, “West Bank” is a term coined by Jordanian leaders in 1950 in an imperialist effort to expand its borders at the expense of the Jewish State. The “West Bank” region was always known as Judea and Samaria prior to the Jordanian invasion. Subsequent to the Six-Day War of 1967 during which Israel reclaimed land of which they were the true owners, Arabs and Muslims from neighboring nations became “Palestinians” overnight as they flooded the Judea and Samaria regions with the implicit scheme of later claiming domicile in, and ownership of, Jewish territory.

Were one to contemplate the issue from a Biblical perspective, and the Jew and the Christian especially are obligated to do so, he or she would realize that numerous territories occupied by Middle Eastern Arabs and Muslims constitute the land promised by Almighty God to the Israelites. For instance, Cyprus belongs to Israel and was called The Island of Dan. The borders of Israel stretch from the Nile River to the Euphrates. Eastern Egypt, Sinai, Jordan, part of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, part of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and part of Turkey are within the Biblical borders of Israel. 8

The real owners of the aforementioned territories are Jews, not Arabs, and Jews certainly do not “occupy” the West Bank, as misguided Palestinians and their supporters claim. Such insistence adds insult to injury, as the West Bank also belongs to the Jews.

Even if the Judea and Samaria area belonged to the Palestinians, partly or wholly—and they do not, and never did—the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement is an immoral and ill-advised undertaking that imperils the peace process between Israel and Palestine, and serves to cripple Palestinians from assenting to any reasonable compromise.

The following considerations help put the legitimacy or absence thereof, of the BDS movement in proper perspective. The author reminds readers that he acquiesces in the instance at hand, albeit reluctantly, to the injudicious intimation by controversial scholars that the Palestinians have a legitimate claim to the West Bank or a portion thereof. He does so purely for the sake of argument and to expose the extremely dissolute and prejudiced nature of the BDS campaign. Notwithstanding the author’s contention that the Palestinians own no section of the Judea & Samaria (West Bank) region, the willingness by Israeli leaders to work toward accommodating a two-state solution is an admirable and conscientious gesture, albeit one that Palestinian leaders repeatedly eschew with disdain. The irony is mindboggling.

 

ARGUMENTS AGAINST THE UNETHICAL & LOATHSOME NATURE OF THE BDS MOVEMENT

Palestinian Rejection of Israeli Peace Offers

The BDS movement and its supporters cast total blame on the Israelis for the present so-called occupation and settlement conundrum. Leaders of the campaign neglect to acknowledge that Israel, on no less than three occasions, offered a solution to end its “occupation” of land supposedly owned by Palestinians, whereby the latter nation would acquire statehood. The Palestinian leadership, along with the nation’s people, refused such offers.

Israel made the first peace offer in November 29, 1947 via UN Resolution 181, The Partition Resolution. Resolution 181 called for the creation of a Jewish state and an Arab state on territory that at the time, was under the control of the British-overseen Palestine Mandate. 9 Every Arab nation opposed the resolution, voted against it, and vowed to go to war to prevent its implementation. The Arab Higher Committee, which represented the Palestinians, disagreed with the plan and threatened war, while the Jewish Agency, which represented the Jewish inhabitants of the Palestine Mandate, supported Resolution 181.

The Israelis made a second peace offer in the summer of 2000. US President Bill Clinton hosted focused peace talks at Camp David, the country retreat of the nation’s leader in Washington D.C. between Palestinian ruler Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak. The talks resulted in a comprehensive peace plan, which required Israel to allow considerable concessions. Prime Minister Barak agreed to President Clinton’s proposal, but Yasser Arafat rejected it and even considered the plan as a trap by the Israelis. 10 Arafat returned home and promptly launched a new terror offensive, i.e. the Second Intifada, against Israeli civilians.

Israeli leaders presented a third, comprehensive peace offer to the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in 2008 when Prime Minister Ehud Olmert introduced a number of staggering concessions. Olmert’s plan would annex the major Israeli settlements to Israel and in return would hand over equivalent Israeli territory to Palestine. Jerusalem would be split between the two nations. Also, the plan would facilitate a Palestinian state on about 97 percent of the West Bank. Mahmoud Abbas rejected Israel’s offer. A November 11, 2015 Tower.org (an English-language source on Israel and the Middle East) article carried the following statement about Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas’ surprising (shocking to many) admission that he turned down the unprecedented peace offer presented by the Israelis in 2008.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has publicly confirmed for the first time that he turned down a peace offer in 2008 that would have provided for an independent Palestinian state containing all of the Gaza Strip, much of the West Bank (with land swaps), and a tunnel connecting the two areas. 11

In 1967, the United Nations presented UN Security Council Resolution 242, a proposal to end the Israeli occupation in exchange for Palestinian recognition of Israel’s right to exist in peace. The Israelis accepted Resolution 242, but the Palestinians, after meeting with leaders of other Arab nations in Khartoum, Sudan, belligerently responded with their three infamous “NO’S”—No peace, no negotiation, no recognition.

Despite the refusal by Palestine and its Arab supporters even to consider the forgoing peace offers by Israel; some undeniably generous, there were no calls for boycotts, divestment and sanctions against these nations. The world at large was strangely silent. Today, as peace negotiations continue and as Israel and Palestine make offers and impose conditions, Israel is unfairly singled out as the villain and faces a global BDS threat while Palestine and its misguided allies heap accusations of bias and mistreatment against the Jewish nation.

 

The BDS Movement Encourages Palestinian Resistance to Compromise

 The BDS movement has infiltrated numerous European and American university campuses, many of which are hotbeds of anti-Semitism and liberal prejudice, to such an extent as to embolden students to adopt extreme positions on the Palestinian/Israeli issue—stances that advocate repeated rejection of a peaceful solution to the problem. The mindset influences a global perspective to which even Arab leaders subscribe and consequently encourages them to delay making a commitment toward peace. They figure the longer they put off accepting a peaceful resolution, the stronger the BDS movement against Israel would become. The stronger the BDS movement becomes, the lesser the compromise in giving up the right of return, in agreeing to a demilitarized state, and in making other concessions necessary for a peaceful agreement, which otherwise may be problematical for some Palestinians. Essentially, the injudicious BDS movement makes it difficult for the implementation of a peaceful resolution.

 

Leaders of the BDS Movement Are Opposed to Israel’s Right to Exist

Leaders of the BDS movement oppose the kind of two state compromise Israel finds acceptable. Indeed, many impartial observers feel Palestinians abhor living alongside Jews under any circumstances. The idea of Israel as a nation state of the Jewish people is anathema to Arabs and Muslims across the Middle Eastern continuum. A major leader of the BDS movement, Omar Barghouti, repeatedly expresses his opposition to Israel’s right to exist as the nation state of the Jewish people, even within the 1967 borders. Barghouti opposes a two-state solution. 12 He supports a one state solution in which Israel will be replaced by a Palestinian state encompassing all of what is now Israel and the Palestinian territories. Samir-El-Youssef, a Palestinian British writer and critic, states that “Barghouti’s ‘true peace based on justice’ is that Israel must be punished, brought down to its knees, before a Palestinian is allowed to greet an Israeli in the street.”13

BDS leaders and supporters do not only disagree with Israel’s so-called “occupation and settlement policy,” but opposes the Jewish nation’s very existence.

 

The BDS Movement Promulgates Anti-Semitism & Encourages Double Standards

The BDS movement promotes biased and incorrect opinions about Israel and the Jewish people. The campaign exaggerates the Jewish state’s shortcomings and thereby advances a reworking of the world’s oldest prejudice, namely anti-Semitism. It is no wonder neo-Nazi, Holocaust denial and other anti-Semitic websites showcase the BDS movement. Prominent Jew haters everywhere champion the misbegotten cause.

The problem with the BDS movement is not that it criticizes Israel. The problem with the BDS movement is that it criticizes only Israel. BDS insists on blaming the entire conflict on only one side—Israel. Such simplistic scapegoating won’t bring peace; it will only fuel extremism. 14

The movement, by castigating Israel unfairly about so-called human rights violations and demanding more of the Jewish state while asking less of other nations, people, cultures and religions, prompts a double standard that fosters racism and bigotry. Such an approach serves only to hurt the victims of human rights infringements inflicted by despots around the world.

 

The BDS Movement is an Anti-Human Rights Undertaking

 The BDS movement, in targeting against Israel, essentially militates against the practice of foundational human rights. The Jewish nation is one the most democratic countries in the world. It is without doubt the freest and most democratic nation in the Middle East when compared with the theocratic, totalitarian Arab countries that pervade the region. Palestinians who live in Israel rate Israel’s democracy as the one they admire most in the world.

 “Every year Israel has been the top performer, at times receiving 80 percent approval. The American system has been the next best [67 percent in 1999], followed by the French.” 15

Israel’s Arab citizens enjoy more rights than Arabs anywhere else in the world. Arabs serve in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament or legislature, which is located in the capital of Jerusalem. Arabs also serve in Israel’s Judiciary, in the nation’s Foreign Service, in its academia and in business. They reserve the right to criticize Israel and profess support for its enemies. Israeli universities are hotbeds of anti-Jewish rhetoric, loathing and even retaliatory doctrine. Evidence of Israel’s finds corroboration in the following article from the Palestinian newspaper, Al-Quds.

“Israel has proved that for fifty years its real power is in its democracy, guarding the rights of its citizens, applying laws [equally] to the rich and poor, the big and small…and in the participation of the nation in the development of institutions according to ability and efficiency and not according to closeness to [the ruler].”16

The exercise of rights or privileges by non-Arabs or non-Muslims in authoritarian Muslim countries in the Middle East, which is practically every country in the region, is unthinkable. Muslims themselves, in such countries, should they challenge the socio-political status quo, face the sternest reprimand and many a time, summary execution.

Israel possesses an enviable record on women’s rights, gay rights, environmental rights and other entitlements to which people in many other countries are unaccustomed. The Jewish nation is unique in its approach toward minimizing civilian casualties during times of war by alerting its opposition beforehand of possible attacks so innocent men, women and children can seek shelter and safety. Israeli soldiers commit themselves to such humanitarian concerns even while their enemies conceal themselves among civilians and endanger the latter’s lives by fighting from such positions. Also, Israelis do not bomb churches, temples, mosques, hospitals or schools, activities in which Palestinians and Arabs have no misgivings participating.

Any Jew, Muslim or Christian living in Israel, and who disagrees with the nation’s social and political agenda is free to express such dissatisfaction in the courts and in the media, domestically and internationally. Such rights or privileges are non-existent in Arab countries and are scarce in numerous non-Arab nations as well.

Notwithstanding the forgoing liberties and safeguards being entrenched features of Israel’s social and political infrastructures, it remains the only country in the world today facing a BDS campaign. Economic and political sanctions have been lifted from even the most terrorist prone nation in the world i.e. Iran (in concordance with the Islamic republic’s nuclear deal with America, England, France, China, Spain, Germany and European Union nations), while Israel, a country with one of the globe’s best human rights records, stands menaced by a BDS threat. Also, the fact that Israel is a Jewish nation brings to the fore, the troubling specter of not only anti-Semitism, but intemperate bigotry.

 

The BDS Movement’s Potential to Affect Palestinians and Other People Adversely

Were the BDS movement against Israel to persist and/or expand, the campaign would produce the following ill effects and cause undue suffering for very many Palestinian people.

  1. Workers in the employ of Israeli or Jewish organizations would lose their jobs as a result of economic sanctions against their employers.
  2. Academics and artists of various genres, including those who might be proponents of peace and undisturbed coexistence, would find their work and missions jeopardized.
  3. A BDS movement in Israel would endanger the welfare and wellbeing of people in Palestine and around the world who might benefit from the use of Israeli medicine and the cooperation between Israeli and other scientists.
  4. The BDS adversative effect on Israel’s economy and its relationships with foreign vendors would serve toward stymying the Jewish nation’s high tech industry, and the high-tech industry around the world, since Israel’s contribution in such a regard is disproportionally greater than those of other countries.

The following observation by the Auerbach Central Agency for Jewish Education encapsulates the tremendous strides in fields of science, medicine, technology, the arts and humanities Israel has made since its establishment as an independent nation some seventy years ago, and its willingness to share its successes with the rest of the world.

 By investing in its people and education and by encouraging creativity, Israel built a dynamic society in just 64 years. Israel is a trailblazer in biomedical and technological innovation and has made major contributions to the world in science, medicine, technology, the arts, and humanities. Since its earliest days, Israel has also been at the forefront of humanitarian programs, sharing its expertise and discoveries with the world. 17

 

The BDS Movement Would Embolden Iranian Terror against Israel

 An eminently conceivable, ulterior motive of the BDS campaign’s leaders and supporters could be to encourage Iran, the world’s foremost facilitator of international terrorism, to prod domestic terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah and Hamas to attack Israel, which, in turn, would leave the Jewish nation with no recourse but to defend itself. Israel’s decision to defend its citizens and the country’s physical infrastructure would no doubt prompt “outrage and condemnation” from the world at large, as it did when the Palestinians launched thousands of rockets from Gaza during 2008 and 2009—rockets indiscriminately aimed at hospitals, schools, temples, churches, mosques and marketplaces.

Israel, in order to defend its citizens and the nation’s physical infrastructure against its merciless and unconscionable enemies, upgraded its defense system. The following serves as confirmation of the Jewish nation’s success in protecting itself and its people and thwarting the sinister agenda of the Palestinians and their supporters.18

(a) Suicide bombings dropped from a high of 60 in 2002 to zero in 2009.

(b) Thwarted suicide bombing attempts rose from 36 percent in 2001 to 95 percent in 2006. Israel prevented 16 suicide bomb plots in 2016.

(c) Total Israeli fatalities dropped 98 percent, from a high of 451 in 2002 to six in 2013.

(d) Total Israelis wounded dropped from a high of 2,309 in 2002 to 30 in 2013. One hundred forty-nine Israelis were injured in 2016 during the “knife intifada.”

(e) Total attacks dropped from a high of 5,633 in 2001 to 2,396 in 2015.

(f) The IDF has avoided harming civilians with increasing success. From 2009 to 2012 roughly 28 percent of Palestinians killed were civilians. In contrast, the UN reports that 75 percent of casualties in similar conflicts around the world were civilians.

(g) After Israel’s operation against Hamas in 2014, the number of rockets and mortars fired from Gaza has dropped dramatically, from 4,632 in 2014 to 15 in 2016.

(h) Iron Dome, Israel’s newest air defense system, has stopped hundreds of incoming rockets since its implementation in 2011.

As unreasoned and heartless as the Palestinians might be in launching incessant attacks Israel, the Jewish nation’s expectable response to defend itself would likely spur a call for intensified BDS measures.

 

The BDS Movement against Israel is a Distraction from Serious Global Crises

 The BDS movement against Israel provides a distraction from far greater concerns, such as global humanitarian issues that require immediate and continuous monitoring. By placing unwarranted focus on the ill-advised BDS movement, the international human rights community essentially neglects to accord adequate consideration to crises in the Middle East, China, Russia, Africa and Asia, among other regions. Following are a few of the current, more vexing crises that beg the world’s attention.

The Syrian Refugee Crisis – The war in Syria has been raging for more than seven years and as of April 2018 has caused over five and one half million people, about half of them children, to flee the country. Very many people within Syria find themselves displaced, with a major disruption of educational progress and community and family life. The Syrian conflict has created an international refugee crisis, especially in Europe. Child refugees face sickness and exploitation. Living conditions are deplorable, including those within Syria itself.

The use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Civil War has been confirmed by the United Nations. 19 Deadly attacks during the war included the Ghouta attack in the suburbs of Damascus in August 2013 and the Khan al-Assal attack in the suburbs of Aleppo in March 2013. An April 8, 2018 BBC News article reported that at least 70 people died as a result of a chemical attack in Douma, the last rebel-controlled town in Eastern Ghouta. 20

The ongoing violence against civilians has been condemned by the Arab League, the European Union, the United States and other countries. There is no foreseeable end in sight to the conflict and displacement.

The Nepal Earthquake (Gorkha earthquake) – A magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck close to the city of Kathmandu, central Nepal on April 25, 2015, causing widespread destruction and triggering avalanches in the Himalayas. More than 9,000 people perished in Nepal, India, China and Bangladesh as a result of the earthquake and some eight million bore its repercussions.

The earthquake damaged and/or destroyed more than 600,000 structures in Kathmandu and surrounding towns. The quake was so massive that its effects reverberated throughout central and eastern Nepal, much of the Ganges River plain in northern India, and northwestern Bangladesh, as well as in the southern parts of the Plateau of Tibet and western Bhutan. 21

The Nepalese government declared a state of emergency immediately after the earthquake. Nepalese leaders called upon the international community for help. The United Nations shortly after established the “Nepal Earthquake 2015 Flash Appeal” fund, which in the space of two weeks, raised more than $330 million through direct aid or pledges. 22 Very many people continue to suffer from the quake’s aftermath.

 West Africa Ebola Outbreak – The 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa was the worst manifestation of the disease since scientists identified the virus in 1975. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the outbreak was the “largest, most severe and most complex Ebola epidemic in history.” 23 The outbreak infected more than 28,000 people 24 and lasted for eighteen months. The international public health emergency ended in 2016, but not before the virus claimed in excess of 11,000 lives in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia. Sierra Leone, ill-prepared for an epidemic and the overwhelming number of patients, suffered more than any other country. WHO statistics revealed a total of 14,124 cases and 3,955 deaths.

Global efforts continue to prevent the dreaded disease from spreading.

South Sudan Conflict – In 2017, the South Sudan war entered its fourth year and spread across the country with new fighting in Greater Upper Nile, Western Bahr al Ghazal, and the Equatorias. Since the start of the conflict, almost two million people have been internally displaced and another two million have sought refuge in neighboring countries, with one million in Uganda alone. More than 230,000 people are sheltering in six United Nations bases in towns across the country. 25

Famine is widespread, especially in conflict-affected areas of the region. Both sides of the conflict have committed abuses that qualify as war crimes, including looting, indiscriminate attacks on civilians and the destruction of civilian property, arbitrary arrests and detention, beatings and torture, enforced disappearances, rape including gang rape, and extrajudicial executions. Some abuses may also constitute crimes against humanity.

Somalia Drought – This Horn of Africa country has been the venue of internal conflict, government instability, recurring drought, and an absence of basic infrastructure for many years. A continuous shortage of food has plagued the country for many decades. Late in 2015, flooding resulted from the effects of El Nino, an irregularly occurring and complex series of climatic changes affecting the equatorial Pacific region and beyond every few years.

While by 2017, the risk of famine in Somalia had declined, humanitarian needs remain at critical levels. An estimated 5.4 million people are in need of assistance, 2.1 million are internally displaced, and 1.2 million children are projected to be malnourished. The 2018 Gu season (main rainy season) is forecasted to be normal to below normal. However, given current conditions, humanitarian assistance must be sustained. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) continues its efforts at the humanitarian-development nexus, meeting humanitarian needs while reducing risk and vulnerabilities and increasing resilience. 26

 Central American Drought – The countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, also called the Dry Corridor, experienced prolonged dry weather associated with El Nino in 2015, which greatly affected crop yields. The United Nations, in October 2015, reported that 3.5 million people in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador experienced hardships related to El Nino activity, and were in immediate need of food assistance, health care, and livelihood support. 27

 The Dry Corridor has been experiencing one of the worst droughts of the last ten years and by the end of June 2016, the impact of the worst El Niño event ever recorded continued to be felt in the region, compounding the damage from two consecutive years of drought.28

 Central African Republic Violence – The ongoing civil war in the Central African Republic between the Seleka rebel coalition and government forces, which began in December 2012, engenders global humanitarian concern. The conflict displaced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes. Children are vulnerable to abuse and violence as a result of closed schools. Warring factions recruit many of these young ones. Millions of people need immediate help such as protection, food, and access to health services. Chronic malnutrition rates are among the highest in the world.

Violence has increased throughout region, particularly between Seleka factions in the central regions and between rebels and anti-balaka militias in the northwest. Civilians are caught in the middle, and sometimes targeted, despite UN peacekeepers’ presence. The government struggles to maintain control of the capital, relying on peacekeepers for support. An estimated 461,000 people, mostly Muslims, are refugees in neighboring countries; 421,000 more are internally displaced. The new Special Criminal Court, a tribunal comprised of national and international staff and designed to promote accountability and stem the violence, requires financial and political support from the government and its international partners. 29

 

THE BDS MOVEMENT – DOOMED TO FAILURE

The imbalanced Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, and the Palestinians’ persistent refusal to consider the execution of a two-state agreement with Israel, point to the inescapable conclusion that Palestinian leaders and the people of Palestine, in likely consonance with neighboring Arab and Muslim theocrats, do not want to live alongside the Israelis in peace, but hanker after the Judea and Samaria and West Bank regions in their entirety, all for themselves.

The BDS movement is doomed to failure. The Israeli government and the Israeli people will never acquiesce to the partisan and discriminatory demands of the misguided campaign leaders and supporters. It is illogical to expect the Jewish nation to kowtow to dissolute threats and make decisions in relation to national security and the safety of its citizens. Such a departure from commonsensical thinking would only help engender more wars, death and suffering.

It is unconscionable that many people around the globe would lend credence to an underhand, guileful plot like the BDS movement and that such a scheme should target a nation like Israel, which boasts a sold human rights record. Further, the fact that many people around the world who profess to be Christians support the BDS movement is reprehensible.

 Notes:

  1. “Palestinian BDS National Committee.” BDS Movement, 9 July 2005. Archived on 31 January 2016
  2. Mitchell G. Bard; Jeff Dawson (2012). “Israel and the Campus: The Real Story” (PDF). AICE.
  3. “Final score: Dershowitz 137, BDS 101.” The Jerusalem Post. 2015-11-03.
  4. “Is BDS Hate Speech?” The Jewish Daily Forward. 14 February 2013. 2 June 2013.
  5. Foxman, Abraham. “An Open Letter on Academic Freedom and University Responsibility.” ADL. 2 June 2013
  6. Jews and the Left: The Rise and Fall of a Political Alliance, Chapter Two: Anti-Semitism and support for Jewish rights: an analysis of socialist attitudes to the Jews, P. Mendes, Palgrave Macmillan, 2014, page 89
  7. A blueprint to combat the assault on Israel’s legitimacy in Europe.” The Jerusalem Post. 4 June 2014. At its core, the assault on Israel’s legitimacy is a denial of the Jewish people’s right to self-determination.
  8. Exodus 23:31; Ezekiel 47: 17 – 20; Genesis 15:18; Numbers 34: 6, 11-12; Deuteronomy 11:24; Joshua 1:4)
  9. “A/RES/181(II) of 29 November 1947.” United Nations General Assembly.
  10. Amnon Kapeliouk, A summit clouded by suspicion; Haaretz, 23 November 2001.
  11. org Staff – Abbas Admits For the First Time That He Turned Down Peace Offer in 2008.
  12. Maurice Ostroff, ‘BDS opposes the two state solution of the Arab-Israel conflict,’ Jerusalem Post, 12 May 2013.
  13. Samir El-Youssef, ‘Against boycott and its rhetoric: a reply to Omar Barghouti,’ Open Democracy.net, 18 October 2005
  14. Ali Mustafa, “Boycotts work: An interview with Omar Barghouti,” The Electronic Intifada, May 31, 2009.
  15. Center for Palestine Research and Studies “The Peace Process…” Public Opinion Poll #38, 40 CPRS Polls, January 7–9, 1999; Quote taken from James Bennet, “Letter from the Middle East,” New York Times, April 2, 2003
  16. Columnist Dr. Talal Al-Shareef, Palestinian newspaper Al-Quds, May 27, 1999. MEMRI, “Palestinians Comment on Israeli Democracy,” Special Dispatch Series No. 34, June 4, 1999
  17. Information compiled from Steve Bunstein, “Fascinating Facts about Israel,” Auerbach Central Agency for Jewish Education, 2006; Invest in Israel website; Israel21c website
  18. “Four Years of Conflict: Israel’s War against Terrorism,” October 3, 2004; “Summary of Terrorist Activity 2004”; IDF website statistics; Israel Security Agency, “Monthly Reports,” October 2013; StandWithUs, “Civilian Casualties In The Palestinian–Israeli Conflict,” 2013; On Iron Dome, IDF Live Blog, “Rocket Attacks from Gaza,” November 20, 2012.
  19. “Third report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism”. 24 August 2016.
  20. British Broadcasting Corporation – Syria War: At Least 70 Killed in Suspected Chemical Attack in Douma. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-43686157
  21. John P. Rafferty – Nepal Earthquake of 2015, 4/18/2018. ©2018 Encyclopedia Britannica.
  22. John P. Rafferty – Nepal Earthquake of 2015, 4/18/2018. ©2018 Encyclopedia Britannica.
  23. http://www.who.int/csr/disease/ebola/ebola-6-months/surprises/en/
  24. http://www.who.int/csr/disease/ebola/en/
  25. Human Rights Watch – World Report 2018. South Sudan – Events of 2017.
  26. International Organization for Migration (IOM Somalia – Situation Review, January 2018.
  27. https://reliefweb.int/report/guatemala/central-america-dry-corridor-situation-report-june-2016
  28. https://reliefweb.int/report/el-salvador/reduce-el-ni-os-impact-central-americas-dry-corridor-build-resilience-and-invest
  29. 2018 Human Rights Watch – Central African Republic. https://www.hrw.org/africa/central-african-republic

 

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