Trending Topics:

Florida County unanimously passes anti-BDS resolution after Israeli official tells commission the movement ‘stands for anti-semitism’

News
on 22 Comments

On September 24, Florida’s Broward County unanimously passed a resolution condemning the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement after an Israeli official denounced it in front of the county’s commission.

Resolution No. 2019-445 was introduced by County Commissioner Steve Geller. It expresses opposition to BDS and calls on Palestine and Israel to return to direct negotiations. Its text declares that:

“[BDS] seeks to establish a Palestinian state on territories commonly known as the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, and it seeks to ensure the ‘right of return’ to the State of Israel of all Arab residents who resided there in 1948 and all of their descendants, which would create a non-Jewish majority within the State of Israel itself. Thus, the BDS Movement effectively seeks to destroy the State of Israel as a homeland to the Jewish people, and seeks to establish one or two Palestinian-majority states.”

Before the vote took place, Gellar asked Lior Haiat to address the commission. Haiat is currently Israel’s Consul General to Florida, but is tabbed to become Israel’s Foreign Ministry spokesman later this fall. In his remarks, he stressed the importance of such legislation and praised the United Kingdom’s recent decision to delay a visa for BDS co-founder Omar Barghouti:

I want to thank you for raising this issue. I want to thank you for taking a stand against discrimination, taking a stand against racism, and taking a stand against anti-Semitism because BDS does not stand for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions. BDS stands for anti-Semitism. This is the new face of anti-Semitism and their only goal is to destroy the state of Israel. This is not what I’m saying, this is what they’re saying and I’m very happy to see that people around the world and countries around the world are taking a stand against it. Just last week, Great Britain denied the entry of the creator of the BDS movement because he’s a supporter of anti-Semitism. This is the moral stand that we should take. 

The resolution passed 8-0 with multiple commission members asking if they could co-sponsor the measure.

“This is an outrageous, misguided attack on free speech, and is surely unconstitutional,” Jewish Voice for Peace member David Elfant told the Sun-Sentinel, “The BDS movement is not anti-semitic; we are simply struggling for the Palestinian people to be able to live with freedom, justice and dignity. The people who are so up in arms about the BDS movement should spend more time looking in the mirror and research the truth about the never-ending injustices imposed on the Palestinian people by the state of Israel.”

In 2016, Florida passed an anti-BDS bill to prevent the state from doing business with any company that boycotts Israel. That legislation also required the establishment of a blacklist for companies that support BDS. In 2018, it passed legislation that expanded the original bill.

This past April, Florida lawmakers unanimously passed HB 741, a bill that amends the state’s discrimination laws to effectively equate criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism. HB 741 was sponsored by State Representative Randy Fine, who made headlines that same month for referring to a Jewish constituent as a “Judenrat” for opposing the legislation. That’s a term generally used to describe Jews who collaborated with the Nazis in the concentration camps. Fine made that comment on Facebook thread in which he also declared that Palestine doesn’t exist.

Governor Ron DeSantis held a symbolic signing ceremony for HB 741 in Israel, where a state cabinet meeting was also held. The move prompted a number of lawsuits from local news organizations who argued that the session violated Florida’s transparency laws.

Michael Arria

Michael Arria is the U.S. correspondent for Mondoweiss.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

22 Responses

  1. Citizen on September 28, 2019, 7:46 am

    Disgusting.

  2. eljay on September 28, 2019, 9:05 am

    BDS is a call for justice, accountability and equality in I-P. Opposition to it is consistently based on the unjust, immoral and hypocritical Zionist belief that the religion-based identity of Jewish grants to those who choose to embrace it the “right”:
    – to be supremacists;
    – to have as large as possible a religion-supremacist state; and
    – to do “necessary evil” unto others.

  3. N30rebel on September 28, 2019, 9:45 am

    “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.”

    • pgtl10 on September 29, 2019, 11:21 am

      So Broward County openly endorses racism. They blatantly acknowledge they oppose refugees from returning to their homes because they are not Jewish and oppose non-Jews from being empowered.

  4. Boomer on September 28, 2019, 11:33 am

    I recall a few years ago on this site, in response to someone’s hopeful comment about the potential impact of BDS, one of the pro-Israel commenters said that Israel was going to target and destroy BDS. That’s a paraphrase, I don’t recall the exact language. At the time, I wasn’t sure how effective Israel’s attack would be. I have to conclude that it has succeeded beyond my expectations. I also live in a state that has passed similar laws . . . as have numerous other states. I knew that the Lobby was powerful in DC, but I didn’t realize how far that power extends throughout America.

  5. pgtl10 on September 29, 2019, 11:30 am

    Someone should sue Broward County. They made it clear that they oppose a movement because they wish that a country have a specific ethnic makeup. That’s discrimination based on race and ethnic origins.

    • mondonut on September 29, 2019, 3:58 pm

      @pgtl10 , they oppose a movement because they wish that a country have a specific ethnic makeup.

      They oppose a group that declares the land itself is Arab, that is has a specific ethnic makeup.

      Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall

      • eljay on September 29, 2019, 8:54 pm

        || mon donut … They oppose a group that declares the land itself is Arab, that is has a specific ethnic makeup.

        Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall ||

        In the sense that it covers a lot of countries, nationalities, cultures, ethnicities and even belief systems, “Arab” is analogous to “European”. Would these people oppose a group that declares the land of Europe to be European? I wonder.

        That said, I’m glad to see you finally accepting that no part of geographic Palestine is “Jewish land” and that all of geographic Palestine belongs to its indigenous population – that is, the people living in and up to n-generations removed from the region – and not to “the Jews” or the “Jewish people”.

        Thanks, donut.  :-)

      • mondonut on September 30, 2019, 12:33 am

        @eljay “Arab” is analogous to “European”

        No its not, that is ridiculous. Same goes for your repeated insistence in putting words into others mouths.

        Would these people oppose a group that declares the land of Europe to be European? I wonder.

        That said, I’m glad to see you finally accepting that no part of geographic Palestine is “Jewish land” and that all of geographic Palestine belongs to its indigenous population – that is, the people living in and up to n-generations removed from the region – and not to “the Jews” or the “Jewish people”.

        Thanks, donut. :-)

      • eljay on September 30, 2019, 8:07 am

        || mon donut: @eljay “Arab” is analogous to “European”

        No its not, that is ridiculous. … ||

        There’s nothing ridiculous about it.

        || … Same goes for your repeated insistence in putting words into others mouths. … ||

        You appeared to oppose the idea that the land of geographic Palestine can have a “a specific ethnic makeup”. From this I inferred that if you believe it cannot be “Arab” you must also believe that it cannot be “Jewish”.

        But perhaps I inferred incorrectly. So, please, do tell in your own words: Is the land of geographic Palestine “Jewish land?

        Thanks, donut.  :-)

      • wondering jew on September 30, 2019, 4:37 pm

        European analogous to Arab? I don’t know.
        Europe is a continent, or a subcontinent.

        Other implications are much more fraught and subjective . Europe implies white. (Europe circa 2019 implies, Christian or post Christian).

        Europe does not imply a single language, but I’m sure that sociologists might find a few other categories implied by the geographical phrase European. Assumedly Europeans lived in Europe 2 thousand years ago as well.

        In the lands conquered in the post Mohammed spread of Islam, those people were not known as Arabs in the year 630 C.E. So all the countries that were subjugated by the sword of Islam and also became speakers of Arabic and thus identified as Arab countries on the basis of a world event of approximately 1350 to 1380 years ago. So the implications of the phrase Arab countries has little to do with geography, only insofar as history turned those peoples into Arabic speaking peoples. Today Egypt is an Arab country. It is much more than that. But certainly in 630 it was not an Arab country. So European and Arab are very different terms.

      • eljay on September 30, 2019, 5:05 pm

        || wondering jew: European analogous to Arab? … ||

        In the sense that it covers a lot of countries, nationalities, cultures, ethnicities and even belief systems, sure.

        mondonut seems to object to the notion of land having a “specific ethnic makeup”. Maybe he objects only when that makeup is Arab (“Arab land”), but maybe he even objects when that makeup is Jewish (“Jewish land”). I don’t know for sure and I certainly don’t want to put words in his mouth so I’ve asked him to clarify.

      • gamal on October 1, 2019, 6:36 am

        ” in the post Mohammed spread of Islam”

        There were Arabs throughout the whole region from long before Islam, where was the Roman province of Arabia? Loads of Arabs in Rum.

        “the sword of Islam”

        While islam initiated a period of Arabian political dominance that term is bit of a trope, I thought those were dodgy, since 1896 and the publication of “The Preaching of Islam: A History of the Propagation of the Muslim Faith” by Sir Thomas Walker Arnold one doesn’t really have an excuse for such prejudicial ignorance, interestingly the bulk of today’s Muslims are descended from people who converted post 1300 ce, during the period of the Islamic worlds “political degradation” so much for the sword.

        https://tinyurl.com/yx9jc5pj

        “Today Egypt is an Arab country”….Mongols, Arabs, Albanians and various steppe people invaded ruled and never left they were all vanishingly small populations whose impact on the larger population was minimal, the idea that the Arabized masses have lost any connections to their deeper past is yet another trope, its like you have a problem, Egypt is Egyptian as anyone who spends any time their soon finds out, we didn’t disappear we still here, Arabs and all memotropisms should be avoided.

      • gamal on October 1, 2019, 12:55 pm
  6. Ossinev on September 29, 2019, 5:05 pm

    @mondonut
    “They oppose a group that declares the land itself is Arab, that is has a specific ethnic makeup”

    Where exactly in the BDS statement of aims did you “find” this made up tripe ?

    Just to help:

    https://bdsmovement.net/what-is-bds

  7. Ossinev on September 30, 2019, 1:19 pm

    @mondonut

    “Right here. Item 1 of 3”

    Second chance. Precise sentence(s)/paragraph(s) please. No desperate Ziointerpretations/Zioinferences acceptable.

    • mondonut on September 30, 2019, 2:20 pm

      Ossinev, Second chance. Precise sentence(s)/paragraph(s) please.

      Because giving you the exact page, and the exact item is not enough? You will find it on this page, https://bdsmovement.net/call , scroll down until you locate the 3 demands. In the very first demand, the land is declared to be Arab.

      1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall.

      • eljay on September 30, 2019, 2:52 pm

        || mondonut: … You will find it on this page, https://bdsmovement.net/call , scroll down until you locate the 3 demands. In the very first demand, the land is declared to be Arab.

        1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall. ||

        It also shows up in the responses to these FAQs:
        – What is the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement?
        – What does BDS aim to achieve? Does it call for a one state or a two state solution?

  8. Ossinev on October 1, 2019, 7:44 am

    @ejay
    Thank you for the redirection. I fear that we are perhaps urinating into a very strong breeze however. Mondonut and his ilk simply cannot or more likely are unwilling to face up to the simple fact that the Arab land of Palestine was forcibly colonised by foreign practitioners of a religious cult. That colonisation process which originally involved massive ethnic cleansing and genocide (the Nakba) is ongoing but is now heading for the sewer of history as those pesky native inhabitants who were not forcibly exiled simply cannot be driven out en masse as in those halcyon days of the initial colonisation scheme – and they keep breeding.! And very importantly unlike in 1948 there is the Internet,24 hour live news streaming , mobile phones etc giving the new generation the opportunity to monitor and judge Ziolands ongoing colonial crimes.

    Tick tick

    • eljay on October 1, 2019, 2:12 pm

      || Osinev: @ejay
      Thank you for the redirection. … ||

      mondonut wasn’t wrong this time. I felt that I should be supportive.  :-)

Leave a Reply