The writers’ organization PEN urges Enrique Iglesias not to play Azerbaijan because of its political prisoners, but it accepts money from Israel as a “champion” of its world voices festival, even as Marilyn Hacker, Richard Ford and Junot Diaz urge it not to accept the money.
Category Archives: BDS
Aluf Benn urges Israeli elites to fight BDS because it will transform Israel into a state of its citizens, possibly ending up with an Arab prime minister. But that’s what decolonization means.
This past week the NYU Graduate Employee Union (GSOC-UAW 2110) and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst Graduate Employee Union (GEO-UAW 2322), both representing 2,000 members each, endorsed by full membership vote the call from all major Palestinian trade unions and civil society groups to impose Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel. These resolutions by aspiring educators of future generations significantly contribute to the already evolving discourse on justice for Palestinians.
The Freedom2Boycott in Maryland coalition won a significant victory when the 2016 Maryland legislative session ended April 11 with no anti-boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) bill being introduced into the General Assembly.
Alice Rothchild is portrayed as an extremist for supporting BDS on Israeli television, and her Facebook page lights up with rage. She responds: Israelis, you must wake up from your stupor and see how the world sees you.
A delegation from advocates for Palestinians held an impromptu meeting with PEN American Center Executive Director Suzanne Nossel on Tuesday regarding the call for PEN to reject Israeli government sponsorship of the World Voices Festival in NY next week and came away disappointed.
BDS makes big strides at American schools. University of Chicago student council overwhelmingly supported divestment from 10 companies doing business with “apartheid,” while the CUNY grad doctoral students’ council voted by a similar margin for academic boycott of Israel.
Palestinians have given the world many terms. “Nakba,” the Palestinian catastrophe, and “Intifada,” the “shaking off” of an oppressive system are two examples. Another term is “Sumoud,” the persistence of the Palestinian people, despite close to a century of a denial of their right to exist. As attacks on BDS, and BDS organizers, are intensifying globally, Nada Elia says, “Now is the time for sumoud not just in the homeland, but in activist communities worldwide. Just as Palestinians refuse to surrender their rights to freedom, dignity, self-determination, activists will not give up our right to organize for justice.”
Tamam Abdul, 60, sells Israeli goods in her West Bank supermarket, but she would rather not. “All of the products we receive are Israeli, unfortunately,” she said Saturday outside of Ramallah at a fifth conference about the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel, otherwise known by the acronym BDS.
The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) has adopted a human rights investment screen focusing on conflict zones that includes human rights violations in the occupied Palestinian territories. The UUA divested from Hewlett Packard Enterprise, HP Inc., and Motorola Solutions. The UUA has also divested from Caterpillar Inc., due to concerns over its environmental and social practices. These four companies have been the target of boycott and divestment campaigns due to their complicity in violations of Palestinian human rights.
The education journal ‘Rethinking Schools’ endorses BDS: “When the United States was about to invade Afghanistan and again in the lead-up to the war against Iraq, Rethinking Schools argued that these were situations of such magnitude that educators had a moral and an educational responsibility to speak out. We think that Palestine is just such a situation. We’ve had long discussions about what that means for us as educators. One important piece of that responsibility, we believe, is joining the movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel (BDS) for its denial of human rights to Palestinians.”
In a letter made public today over 100 writers, including Pulitzer Prize winners Junot Díaz, Richard Ford, and Alice Walker, and award-winning author Louise Erdrich, have called on the PEN American Center “to reject support from the Embassy of Israel” for PEN’s annual World Voices Festival.
On January 29th 168 Italian scholars from more than 50 universities signed a pledge calling on their institutions to cut ties with the Israel institute of Technology (Technion) in Haifa. The number has soared rapidly, topping 332 signatures last week. The petition follows similar endorsements by scholars and academic associations across Europe, the US and South Africa.
In an open letter to the city of New Orleans, the New Orleans Palestinian Solidarity Committee ask supporters to sign an online petition demanding the City Council pass a resolution making it illegal to carry products that directly support the Israeli occupation.
Eric Alterman says he’s never heard “a single anti-Semitic syllable uttered” in 12 years on the CUNY faculty. Then he asserts without evidence that there is “no doubt” anti-Semitism at campuses across the U.S. Which is it?
How do we know BDS is working? Because in Indiana as in coastal areas BDS opponents are actively trying to stop the movement. The state legislature is attempting to limit public discussion of BDS, and smear BDS proponents as anti-Semites.
Americans are finally getting to debate the merits of Zionism, the ideology of a Jewish state in historical Palestine. But right now officials, including Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, are raising the issue by equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.
An Illinois state agency named 11 companies barred from doing business with the state for boycotting Israel or its settlements, the first such designation by an official US body.
Portland’s Socially Responsible Investments Committee (SRIC) voted – 4 in favor, 2 opposed – at its March 17th meeting to recommend that City funds should not be invested in Caterpillar, citing concern that Caterpillar Corporation violates a number of the City’s socially responsible investment criteria. Maxine Fookson, from Occupation-Free Portland, which pushed for Caterpillar to be placed on the Do-Not-Buy List, said “This is an important victory for human rights. The SRIC today took a stand on the right side of history making it clear that companies, like Caterpillar, that are knowingly engaged in human rights violations in the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land should not be supported by Portland investments.”
The global movement supporting the Palestinian people’s right to freedom, justice and equality has taken impressive steps into the political mainstream in recent years. As a result, Israel, its lobby groups and its right-wing supporters have launched an unprecedented, well-funded global campaign to silence Palestinian narratives and criminalize BDS advocacy, especially in western countries. Israeli-induced attacks on free speech and civil rights in Europe, the US and Canada, among others, are fostering an ominous environment of bullying, intimidation and repression that has all the hallmarks of the era of McCarthyism in the US and the worst days of the apartheid regime in South Africa.
“Legislation that bars BDS activity by private groups, whether corporations or universities, strikes at the heart of First Amendment-protected free speech, will be challenged in the courts and is likely to be struck down.” Defenders of BDS do not often see eye to eye with Abraham Foxman, who wrote these lines shortly before stepping down last year as the national director of the Anti Defamation League. But this is the message that the Massachusetts Freedom to Boycott Coalition will be taking to the halls of the State House on March 15 when they hand deliver to each legislative office a copy of a statement opposing anti-BDS legislation that has been signed by 61 organizations from across the Commonwealth.
Ahava Dead Sea cosmetics, a company that pillages mud products from occupied Palestine, plans to move its factory from the occupied West Bank to within Israel’s pre-1967 borders. The company had been the longtime target of Code Pink’s Stolen Beauty Ahava boycott campaign, which included activists chaining themselves to concrete blocks inside Ahava’s London store, and persistent online social media actions spanning continents since the campaign was launched in 2009.
Dozens of Palestinian students marched in the occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem to encourage business owners to get behind the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement on Sunday. Ibrahim Subhay, a 22-year-old student in Bethlehem, told Mondoweiss that his main goal was to educate business owners on the importance of the BDS movement, “We can’t ask the international community to support us, and not do our part to support ourselves.”
McGill professors committed to justice and equity strongly disagree with the Principal Suzanne Fortier’s official response on behalf of the Montreal university administration to the recent Students’ Society of McGill University (SSMU) motion in support of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel and the subsequent on-line process which failed to ratify this vote.
Academics, including Noam Chomsky, respond to Suzanne Fortier’s misrepresentation of BDS following McGill University’s failure to ratify a student vote in favor of divestment.