London Olympics security contractor’s role in occupation is giving BDS ‘traction and respect’

Haaretz has an important story, the mounting political heat in London over the fact that security at the Olympics has been contracted to G4S, whose Israeli subsidiary enforces the occupation. The attention is giving BDS “respect and traction,” the Israeli government sense. Excerpts:

Now, with the mainstream media beginning to pay attention and after a prominent Labour peer, Lord Hollick, set to ask the government in Parliament next week whether it has examined G4S’ record in the West Bank before awarding it contracts – this [previous acceptance] may change.

Over the last few months, Israel’s foreign ministry has voiced concern that the BDS campaign – which until recently did not seem to be attracting support outside relatively small circles of activists – is now gaining traction and respect.

……..

[T]he Israeli Embassy in London said: “It is astonishing to learn that assisting in stopping suicide bombers and protecting people in coffee shops or children on buses is a stain on the record of a commercial company. We can only wonder what ideology lies behind the demonstrators’ revulsion at the fact that so many Israeli lives have been saved.” The response added that “maybe the experience in stopping Palestinian terrorists is what makes this company the most suitable for providing security at the Olympics.” 

Selling security by advertising the occupation? Will the Parliament see Five Broken Cameras? Will it consider racist Israeli security measures at its airport?

About Phil Weiss and Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani
Posted in Activism, BDS, Occupation

{ 12 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. seafoid says:

    ” We can only wonder what ideology lies behind the demonstrators’ revulsion at the fact that so many Israeli lives have been saved.”

    I think it’s called “humanity”.

  2. lohdennis says:

    Here is a wonderful poster about G4S.
    link to facebook.com

  3. seafoid says:

    What I love about the fact that Israel is just a couple of million zionists is that difference

    between the power they have in “erez Israel” – absolute
    and the influence they have in Galut amongst decent people – zilch

  4. AllenBee says:

    re: “Lord Hollick, set to ask the government in Parliament next week whether it has examined G4S’ record in the West Bank

    Concerns about Israel’s intentions and actions toward West Bank dominated the thinking of

    the late Jack O’Connell (1921-2010), who was CIA station chief in Amman, Jordan, from 1963 to 1971, and became King Hussein’s friend and close adviser. After leaving the CIA, Mr. O’Connell served for many years as Hussein’s attorney and diplomatic counselor in Washington, D.C.”

    In the linked video, Loeb and O’Connell’s son discuss O’Connell’s conviction that CIA should act as intelligence gatherer, not subversive operative; should obtain that intelligence through non-coercive means, otherwise the information was useless.

    Loeb and O’Connell mentioned several times that Israel’s determination to keep the West Bank was at the center of conflicts that would not have been conflicts but for Israel’s intransigence.

    Among other things, O’Connell had negotiated a non-violent resolution of Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, but that pact was undone by James Baker’s team (it is worth noting that Dennis Ross was a key member of Baker’s staff at the time; see Secret Dossier by Pierre Salinger).
    The video is worth 65 min of your time.

    • Les says:

      O’Connell showed good thinking. Any and all information can be wrong, coercion guarantees that a portion of it will be.

    • Israel NEEDS the Mountain Aquifer in the West Bank in order to have sufficient potable water for its residents. Just one of many reasons why the two-state solution won’t work, and why Israel invaded the West Bank in the first place. It’s a fascinating study, Israel’s theft of Palestinian water, specifically in relation to 1967, as well as with Oslo. Ben Ehrenreich gave it a fascinating treatment in his Harper’s article, ‘Drip, Jordan’

  5. FreddyV says:

    Conflation anyone? Brought to you by the Hasbara Embassy in London.

    Are G4S bringing their Israeli division over to run security for the Olympics? If not, what makes them more suitable than any other company?

    What makes G4S less suitable is that it’s in violation of International Law.

  6. MHughes976 says:

    As to racism at airports, I’ve noticed that Heathrow seems to make a point of employing people with ethnic minority, even Muslim, appearance, so I may get readmitted by a lady in a hijab. This may to some extent be for show rather than for real. There’s a sort of British feeling of bureaucracy keeping wearily to the rules.

    • Avi_G. says:

      It’s for show. The orders come from the top. Single out everyone with an olive complexion is easier to follow than Use your training and profile passengers based on their behaviors.

      ———————————————————————————————

      Incidentally, two recent surveys in Norway and Germany show that people in both countries are 2/3rds more likely to be pro-Palestinian than they are to be pro-Israeli.

      In response — after freaking out — the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to invest a few million shekels in an advertising campaign in those two countries, and appoint a Druze ambassador (With an Arab-sounding name) to represent Israel there.

      I wonder if the company that makes Febreze can keep up with the Israeli Ministry of Propaganda’s demand.

  7. That Israeli embassy response is so facile, so stupid – obviously they know exactly what it is about, but patronise the public with this sort of ludicrous banality – that you wonder what parallel universe they inhabit. The Olympics are a great stage for BDS protests, although you can be sure heavy handed policing will be everywhere. But what a great opportunity to hold Israel to account, and raise the issue of its vicious occupation in front of the public. No wonder they bury their heads in the sand, and come out with such utter tripe.

    • seafoid says:

      “assisting in stopping suicide bombers and protecting people in coffee shops or children on buses is a stain on the record of a commercial company”

      There hasn’t been a suicide bombing in almost a decade. When it suits them they extol the values of the Wall. But not in this case so it’s suicide bombers and the glory of G4S which is just a grubby paramiitary servant of YESHA.

      I think the response to the Israeli embassy concerning G4S should be GFYS.

  8. TheTruth says:

    Considering that Olympic security is inextricably connected with Palestinian terrorism, I’m glad a company with Israeli ties is protecting the athletes. Bloodthirsty Palestinian terrorists ruined the 1972 Olympics, and have raised the cost of every single Olympic games since then, to protect the athletes. So boo frigging hoo.