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Boycott Israel

Sixties Fan

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I don’t know what you see. Maybe it’s color; maybe it’s spirit. I see a violent history that has been reproduced in a camouflaged modern-day form.

194710_1356018.jpg.1500x999_q95_crop-smart_upscale.jpg


Having missed the meeting where the Board shifted its stance on BDS, I’ve spent an embarrassing number of hours puzzling over the decision, attempting to make sense of the Board’s reasoning. Yet the more I read the Staff Editorial, the more muddled its logic seemed to become. The Board, seemingly seduced by the “colorful” Wall of Resistance, directs virtually no attention to any concrete or balanced exploration of the conflict, instead evading it by stating that we “can’t nuance away” Palestinians’ lived realities. And eventually, after having evaded all precision and nuance, it blindly accepts BDS’s flawed, factually misleading mission.

And now, BDS co-founder Omar Barghouti has authored a Crimson letter to the editor that repeats a host of deceptive anti-Zionist talking points, recycling references to what others have dubbed “Jewish supremacy” while highlighting reports that characterize the Israeli-Palestinian relationship as a racial dispute. These declarations aren’t just wildly distorted; they’re dangerous. They paint a reductive portrait of the Jewish state, demonizing the nation and delegitimizing its very existence. But they are also provocative, evoking emotion, and are cloaked with a blanket of resonant humanitarian claims. For unknowing onlookers with a taste for justice, that seems to be all that matters.

This slick dynamic, I’ve come to realize, captures the essence — and the dangerous “artistry” — of the broader BDS movement.

It is my intuition that Zionism is not what the Editorial Board — or most people backing an anti-Zionist agenda in the name of justice — believes they are rejecting, or likening to racism and cruelty. Instead, they are rejecting a false projection of Zionism — one that has been carefully constructed by movements like BDS, whose entire narrative is founded upon a hefty hijacking of Jewish identity and history.

Today, the BDS movement’s leaders, like Barghouti, may outwardly oppose antisemitism. But misinformation was part and parcel of what made anti-Jewish hatred, and eventually genocide, a thinkable project in Nazi Germany. It’s what turned Soviet Jews into targets of persecution and hatred years later. Now, the BDS movement is being driven by strikingly similar notes of factual manipulation. One can only expect that the inherited offshoots of this rhetoric would continue to spur antisemitic violence today.

This is exactly what has taken shape amidst BDS’s expanding reach, which stretches outward onto today’s college campuses: One report explicitly attributed the increase in antisemitic incidents on campuses to the rise of the BDS movement. Anti-Zionist and pro-BDS student groups also produce outright exclusion, as legions of college students across the country are pledging not to affiliate with pro-Israel student organizations and are isolating individual Zionist students. Sometimes, these attacks more overtly transpose themselves onto Judaism itself. Only a few years ago at Stony Brook University, a student member of the school’s pro-BDS, anti-Zionist Students for Justice in Palestine chapter was quoted in the school paper as stating, “we want Zionism off this campus, so we also want Hillel off this campus.”

Jewish people are also systematically shut down by the BDS movement’s followers when they try to speak up: According to the Anti-Defamation League, a central goal of SJP, a leading source of BDS activism on college campuses, is to protest pro-Israel campus events by heckling speakers to the point of quietitude. As dialogue is stifled by anti-Zionist and pro-BDS students, vilifying slurs and monikers, new and old, also tend to make their way into the air — from referencing the trope of a “smelly Jew,” to chanting “Zionists are terrorists,” to spewing the words “f—cking Zionist.”

BDS’s strategy of ideological warfare is all the more frightening because of how well it works — after all, it has led some of the most decent, kind, and thoughtful people that I know at Harvard to become patrons and propagators of antisemitism.

The Board admits, still in line with past precedent, that BDS is a “blunt tool.” I believe that this tool is finer than we realize. It has been sharpened by societal forces, and historical precedents, in order to wage what is, at its core, not a fundamentally economic war of boycotts and sanctions — but a more sinister and violent ideological one. People like me — a “f-cking Zionist,” a “smelly Jew,” a modern-day “Elder of Zion” — are not simply “collateral damage” in this war. We are targets — directly wounded by signals and signs of rhetorical weaponry, and dismissed when we respond to what we know has historically been the writing on the wall.

Writing this has not been easy — not just because of the complicated history, to which I have personal ties. It has also been difficult because BDS is the embodiment of everything that I have known the Board to stand against — and, in light of the Board’s failure to recognize that, I can’t help but feel a strange mix of sadness, disappointment, and fear. Back in February 2020, we opined as a Board that casting either group as “the evil one” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a counterproductive approach, and we made an explicit call for nuance. Now, the Board has tacitly endorsed Israel’s demonization while maintaining that “we can’t nuance away” Palestinians’ lived realities. In my view, this is yet another testament to BDS’s chilling “artistry”; it is an embodiment of the fact that BDS’s messaging invokes an emotional reaction that bypasses thought at a visceral level. When nuance is present, it becomes harder to demonize one party — so BDS does all that it can to reject that complexity and thought.

(full article online)


 

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Unilever on Wednesday announced the divestment of its Ben & Jerry’s interests in Israel to its local licensee, allowing the ice cream maker’s products to be sold throughout Israel a year after its controversial move to end sales in eastern Jerusalem and in the West Bank.

The decision follows a months-long legal dispute between Unilever, the parent company of Ben & Jerry’s, and Avi Zinger, owner of American Quality Products Ltd. and the current licensee of the ice cream maker in Israel.

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According to the lawsuit, filed by Zinger in the US District Court of New Jersey in March, where Unilever US is headquartered, Ben & Jerry’s demanded AQP to boycott certain parts of Israel while continuing to sell in other parts of the country, which is illegal under Israeli and US laws. When AQP refused to comply with Ben & Jerry’s demand, the ice cream maker refused to renew its license.

“Terminating AQP’s license solely because the company refused to break the law constitutes wrongful termination and breach of contract under US law, which governs Unilever US and its Ben & Jerry’s subsidiary,” it was argued.

Unilever has four local manufacturing plants in Israel, employing about 2,000 people in Israel and supplying everyday household products across the country.

(full article online)

 

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Indonesia’s Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) have confirmed that Israel’s youth national soccer team can participate in the 2023 FIFA Under-20 World Cup, to be hosted next year by the Southeast Asian nation, even though the two countries have no diplomatic relations.

“We have been discussing it since 2019. All countries that qualify to participate in the 2023 U-20 World Cup are welcome to play [in Indonesia],” Minister of Youth and Sports Zainudin Amali said in an Indonesian-language PSSI statement. He emphasized that sports should not be linked to politics and said, “That’s why FIFA has conveyed to us, [that] any country that passes, must be able to compete in Indonesia. So, there is no problem. Surely our security forces will provide a sense of security. This is something that needs to be considered.”

(full article online)

 

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Cyprus Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides (left) and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid shake hands during a meeting in Jerusalem on July 26, 2021. Photo: Shlomi Amsalem/Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry


Israel and Cyprus signed a number of government to government (GTG) agreements in Nicosia, Cyprus, on Wednesday, including one for the sale of personal protective equipment and tactical equipment to the Cyprus National Guard.

The agreements were signed in the presence of Cyprus’ Defense Minister Charalambos Petrides and Defense Ministry Director General Andreas Louka, as well as the Chief of the National Guard General Staff, Demokritos Zervakis.

(full article online)

 

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The three-day jazz festival, which runs each day from sundown into the night, includes visiting artists from North and Central Africa, Switzerland, Turkey, the US, South America and Israel.

With a lineup created by Israeli trumpeter and festival director Avishai Cohen, who is also launching his latest album, artists include American pianist Fred Hersch, and Israeli musician Zion Golan meeting the modern Israeli sound of four-piece El Khat, alongside Turkish musician Dilan Balkay.

(full article online)

 

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Spanish tenor Placido Domingo to perform in Tel Aviv on September 4, 2022. (Courtesy: Floreno Niccoli)
Spanish tenor Placido Domingo to perform in Tel Aviv on September 4, 2022. (Courtesy: Floreno Niccoli)

Opera legend Placido Domingo will perform in Israel on September 4 at Tel Aviv’s Menora Mivtachim Arena.

The 81-year-old maestro will hold the role of soloist, singing with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor Eugene Cohen.

Domingo is marking a nearly 70-year career, having performed more than 150 roles and 4,100 performances globally.



 

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Israel’s claim it defeated Ben & Jerry’s melts under scrutiny​


Israel is going to be making its own ice cream under Ben and Jerry. It will not be boycotted if sent to the Jews, Arabs, etc who live in Judea and Samaria.

Got it now?
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According to the deal, Zinger will be Israel’s exclusive producer and distributor of Ben & Jerry’s and sell the ice cream under its Hebrew and Arabic names throughout Israel and the West Bank.

Unilever called the settlement the “best outcome” for Ben & Jerry’s in Israel, following a review of the “sensitive matter” and extensive consultation, including with the Israeli government.


 

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Cool, getting ready to kill more civilians.
One reminder as to why civilians are killed in Gaza during a war.


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Let us also remember that thousands of militants in Gaza are counted as "civilians".
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When Hamas stops declaring war on Israel, Hamas will help stop killing their civilians.
 

Hollie

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Cool, getting ready to kill more civilians.
Get your Pom Poms ready. You know the drill. Your islamist terrorist heroes will use their welfare money to pay for the parts needed to launch rockets at Israel from civilian areas. Those attacks will cause Israel to respond and civilians will be casualties.

It's all formula. Safely ensconced in the Great Satan, you can celebrate the civilians deaths and flail your Pom Poms.
 

P F Tinmore

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Students for Justice in Palestine Protest the Boston ADL​


 

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Israel has sent troops to take part in the biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC)multinational naval exercise.


RIMPAC is led by the US Third Fleet off the coast of Hawaii and Southern California in August. It has been held every two years since the early 1970s and is considered the world’s largest maritime exercise.


The exercise, which kicked off last week and is scheduled to go until August 4 in and near the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California, will see a total of 38 ships including three unmanned surface vessels, four submarines, nine national land forces and more than 170 aircraft including the MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle.


This year’s exercise includes approximately 25,000 personnel from these 26 nations: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, South Korea, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, the United Kingdom and the United States.

(full article online)


 

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Despite the fact that Israel is the world’s sole Jewish state (despite a population that also includes Muslims, Christians, and others), encircled by 14 Muslim countries — many of which have made no secret of their desire to wipe Israel’s Jews from the face of the planet — “woke” BDSers nonetheless view Israeli Jews as the oppressors, and Palestinian Muslims as their victims. “Proponents of the cultural Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign against Israel claim their cause is human rights and their methods are nonviolent,” Melman writes. “They have mastered the language of the enlightened left, but scratch the surface and you will see that their tactics – along with their messaging – are anything but peaceful.”

Indeed, BDS refuses any possibilities for peace in the region. “There is no declaration in favor of a two-state solution. In fact, there is no call from BDS for a democratic Palestinian nation that would live in peace and security with Israel,” Melman writes.

Chapter by chapter, step by step, Melman’s powerful writing builds her argument with eye-opening insights into the history of the Jews, of Israel, and accordingly, the BDS movement. Throughout, her perspective remains clear-eyed and balanced; she is willing to criticize actions of Israel’s government without criticizing Israel itself or questioning its right to exist. After all, she notes, BDSers and their supporters have never called for the boycott, censorship, or destruction of American artists when they disagree with the American government, which many frequently do.

She quotes a protest by six Israeli choreographers after they were blocked from participating in a Norwegian festival: “Would you reject a Spanish artist for the Spanish policy against Caledonia and the Basques? Would you reject a Saudi artist for Saudi restrictions on women’s rights? Would you reject an American artist for the American policies regarding the ‘Muslim ban’ regulations? Would you reject a Syrian artist for bloodshed caused by the Syrian government? Would you reject an Iranian artist for the forceful reaction to the last uprising in the country? If we were Muslim Arab Israeli artists, Christian Arab Israeli artists, Bedouin-Israeli artists, Circassian-Israeli artists, Druze-Israeli artists, or Jewish-Israeli artists living abroad, would we have been denied participation in your festival as well?”

It was a scathing message. And throughout “Artists Under Fire,” Melman similarly tears the mask off the BDS movement, its organizers, and its adherents, exposing not just their hypocrisy, but their true intent: “BDS does not seek to educate,” she writes, “it seeks to intimidate.”

Yet that intimidation does more than just threaten the lives and well-being of artists, several of whom — including singer Lana del Rey — have backed out of performances in Israel for fear of their own safety. It represents a deeper political and cultural threat. “The threat to freedom of expression anywhere is a threat to that freedom everywhere,” Melman asserts. “BDS is creating a handbook for the repression of artistic expression in democratic societies. The world looks away at great peril.”

While Melman focuses on performing artists — particularly musicians such as anti-Israel activist Roger Waters of Pink Floyd and Patti Smith — the censorship and anti-Israel boycott goes further. Other artists whose anti-Israel, pro-BDS stances have motivated their antisemitic activism include graffiti artist Banksy, actress Susan Sarandon, writers Alice Walker, Sally Rooney, and more.

True, their freedom of expression has not been affected by their own choice not to participate in Israeli culture — refusing, for instance, to perform there or have their books translated into Hebrew, or in Banksy’s case, outright supporting militant Palestinian propaganda with antisemitic imagery. But as lawyer and Times of Israel columnist Craig Emanuel has written, “The actions taken by the BDS movement and similar organizations are not only a threat to the collaboration of international artists and entertainers. They also create roadblocks between people from different cultures who share something in common, and who want to be able to engage in open and honest discussions regarding cultural, political and even religious differences that can lead to the possibility of better understanding issues that are frequently misunderstood.”

And without such understanding, how can societies still flourish? “Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed that his children would one day be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character,” Melman writes. “Perhaps if he were alive now, he would dream of the day that Israeli artists would be judged not by the cover of their passport, but by their contributions to the world.”

(full article online)

 

Sixties Fan

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P F Tinmore

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Despite the fact that Israel is the world’s sole Jewish state (despite a population that also includes Muslims, Christians, and others), encircled by 14 Muslim countries — many of which have made no secret of their desire to wipe Israel’s Jews from the face of the planet — “woke” BDSers nonetheless view Israeli Jews as the oppressors, and Palestinian Muslims as their victims. “Proponents of the cultural Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign against Israel claim their cause is human rights and their methods are nonviolent,” Melman writes. “They have mastered the language of the enlightened left, but scratch the surface and you will see that their tactics – along with their messaging – are anything but peaceful.”

Indeed, BDS refuses any possibilities for peace in the region. “There is no declaration in favor of a two-state solution. In fact, there is no call from BDS for a democratic Palestinian nation that would live in peace and security with Israel,” Melman writes.

Chapter by chapter, step by step, Melman’s powerful writing builds her argument with eye-opening insights into the history of the Jews, of Israel, and accordingly, the BDS movement. Throughout, her perspective remains clear-eyed and balanced; she is willing to criticize actions of Israel’s government without criticizing Israel itself or questioning its right to exist. After all, she notes, BDSers and their supporters have never called for the boycott, censorship, or destruction of American artists when they disagree with the American government, which many frequently do.

She quotes a protest by six Israeli choreographers after they were blocked from participating in a Norwegian festival: “Would you reject a Spanish artist for the Spanish policy against Caledonia and the Basques? Would you reject a Saudi artist for Saudi restrictions on women’s rights? Would you reject an American artist for the American policies regarding the ‘Muslim ban’ regulations? Would you reject a Syrian artist for bloodshed caused by the Syrian government? Would you reject an Iranian artist for the forceful reaction to the last uprising in the country? If we were Muslim Arab Israeli artists, Christian Arab Israeli artists, Bedouin-Israeli artists, Circassian-Israeli artists, Druze-Israeli artists, or Jewish-Israeli artists living abroad, would we have been denied participation in your festival as well?”

It was a scathing message. And throughout “Artists Under Fire,” Melman similarly tears the mask off the BDS movement, its organizers, and its adherents, exposing not just their hypocrisy, but their true intent: “BDS does not seek to educate,” she writes, “it seeks to intimidate.”

Yet that intimidation does more than just threaten the lives and well-being of artists, several of whom — including singer Lana del Rey — have backed out of performances in Israel for fear of their own safety. It represents a deeper political and cultural threat. “The threat to freedom of expression anywhere is a threat to that freedom everywhere,” Melman asserts. “BDS is creating a handbook for the repression of artistic expression in democratic societies. The world looks away at great peril.”

While Melman focuses on performing artists — particularly musicians such as anti-Israel activist Roger Waters of Pink Floyd and Patti Smith — the censorship and anti-Israel boycott goes further. Other artists whose anti-Israel, pro-BDS stances have motivated their antisemitic activism include graffiti artist Banksy, actress Susan Sarandon, writers Alice Walker, Sally Rooney, and more.

True, their freedom of expression has not been affected by their own choice not to participate in Israeli culture — refusing, for instance, to perform there or have their books translated into Hebrew, or in Banksy’s case, outright supporting militant Palestinian propaganda with antisemitic imagery. But as lawyer and Times of Israel columnist Craig Emanuel has written, “The actions taken by the BDS movement and similar organizations are not only a threat to the collaboration of international artists and entertainers. They also create roadblocks between people from different cultures who share something in common, and who want to be able to engage in open and honest discussions regarding cultural, political and even religious differences that can lead to the possibility of better understanding issues that are frequently misunderstood.”

And without such understanding, how can societies still flourish? “Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed that his children would one day be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character,” Melman writes. “Perhaps if he were alive now, he would dream of the day that Israeli artists would be judged not by the cover of their passport, but by their contributions to the world.”

(full article online)

Why the rant if BDS is losing?
 

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