A bill that would have required all California high school students to take an ethnic studies course will be delayed for at least a year after pro-Israel groups complained that the curriculum failed to address anti-semitism and singled “Israel out for condemnation.” Some of the backlash was initiated by an organization that is funded by the Israeli government.
Tag Archives: BDS
By banning Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from visiting the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, Israel has created a political upheaval in the U.S., with many Americans now favoring cutting aid to the country. One thing achieved this result: The women support BDS, and they have demonstrated the power of the nonviolent campaign.
The long term political ramifications of Netanyahu’s decision to deny entry to Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar remain to be seen. What is clear, however, is that the latest efforts by the Israeli premier to quash the growing BDS movement have backfired.
The Netanyahu government barred Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar over their support for BDS, but earlier this week Israeli lawmakers sent a letter to Congress saying the two-state solution is more dangerous than BDS. Will Netanyahu bar two-state supporters next?
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave details behind the decision to ban Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from entering Israel and the West Bank on a Congressional delegation this afternoon in a statement that alleged terrorism ties on the part of the trip’s coordinator and said “the sole purpose of their visit is to harm Israel and increase incitement.”
Israeli media is reporting that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will bar Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) from entering Israel for a planned congressional delegation over their support for the BDS movement.
Israeli BDS activists write to Rep. Ayanna Pressley: “We were disappointed to learn of your recent vote in favor of HR 246. Your condemnation of the BDS movement – a global, grassroots-based, non-violent campaign for equality in human rights does not do justice to your relentless work for human rights and human dignity for marginalized populations.”
BDS movement: “In this grave moment, we stand in solidarity with the people in Kashmir. Our oppressors are united, and our struggles will be stronger if we too unite.”
On August 12, Twenty-one Israeli lawmakers sent a letter to members of Congress criticizing a bill that condemned the boycott of Israel because it endorsed a two-state solution. “We would like to make our position clear that the establishment of a Palestinian state would be far more dangerous to Israel than BDS,” the letter reads.
David Clennon was invited to audition for a new Netflix television series that he learned was being produced by the creators of the Israeli series “Fauda.” As much as he needed the work he passed due to their connection to the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s “Brand Israel” campaign: “I haven’t been employed for a year and a half. So, with considerable reluctance, but inspired by the example of so many others, I chose not to participate in the whitewashing of Israel’s image.”
Albert Lee is looking to unseat longtime Democratic incumbent Earl Blumenauer in Oregon’s 3rd congressional district and spoke with Mondoweiss about BDS, the occupation of Palestine, and whether his campaign is pushing Blumenauer to the left on these issues.
Pro-Israel groups and Republicans have been lying about Ilhan Omar’s boycott bill and it seemingly just paid off. The State Department has updated its working definition of antisemitism to include comparisons between current Israeli policies and those of the Nazis.
In 2016, Fordham University tried to block a Palestinian advocacy group from being formed. After a two year legal battle, students at the school have won a landmark victory which legal advocates are calling “the first major legal victory for free speech for advocates of Palestine on college campuses,” and a Students for Justice in Palestine club can now be established on their campus.
Tulsi Gabbard voted to condemn BDS, but she now supports Ilhan Omar’s bill affirming that Americans’ right to boycott foreign countries to advance the cause of human rights.
Eric Alterman dismisses BDS in the NYT, saying it is a youthful fad that only obscures the underlying issues. Alice Rothchild responds that it is important because of those issues — Israeli racism, Jewish privilege, and Palestinian dispossession.
Recent events have shone a spotlight not only on how Israel is intensifying its abuse of Palestinians under its rule, but the utterly depraved complicity of western governments in its actions.
Nada Elia on Ayanna Pressley’s dangerous talking points on Palestine: “One cannot speak of the pain on ‘both sides’ of Israel’s war on the Palestinian people without being a normalizer of violent settler-colonialism that hinges on racism. It is tantamount to Trump’s claim that ‘there are fine people on both sides’ of rallies promoting white supremacy, and the protests against these displays of hatred.”
The New York Times would never run an article asking a very legitimate question, “Is Zionism racist?” But it ran a full-page to answer whether BDS is anti-Semitic. The article was surprisingly fair to BDS, including the explanation that Israel supporters feel threatened by BDS because the call for “full equality” for Palestinian citizens would undermine the basis of the “Jewish state.”
On Saturday, organizers of the Berlin Radical Queer March instructed police to block and ban the participation of the Queers for Palestine contingent, a group of 500 Arab and Jewish-led marchers. Queers for Palestine write: “The very fact that we need to defend ourselves against physical and police violence at a ‘radical queer march’ is infuriating and deeply shameful.”
David Lloyd writes that congressional resolutions that affirm the duplicitous language of Zionist lobbies and apologists for apartheid will have little impact on the continuing growth of the BDS movement, “but ‘progressives’ who endorse them stand to lose sight of what is crucial to all fundamental political change: the moral force of social movements out of which, from abolitionism to civil rights to BDS, all substantial transformation has come.”
A resolution affirming that Americans have the right to participate in the boycott of foreign countries has four new cosponsors, including New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The number of cosponsors on the bill has more than doubled since the House overwhelmingly passed a resolution condemning the BDS movement earlier this week.
Fresh off the House resolution condemning boycotts of Israel that passed by 398-17, Republicans call on Democrats to put real teeth in the measure by enabling state laws that forbid contracts with BDS supporters.
Imagine the Russians having the power over Congress the Israel lobby has. Imagine a wildly lopsided Congressional vote condemning a grassroots campaign for human rights in Russia. Trump, contrary to liberal fantasies, has done things that Putin doesn’t want, including opposing a pipeline to Germany from Russia. He has given Israel almost everything it wants except an actual US war against Iran.
Notable progressives backed the House resolution condemning BDS, including Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA). Both faced intense criticism on Twitter for their votes. Khanna responded, Lincoln was not an abolitionist “early in his career”. While Pressley said, “Voting yes on this resolution affirmed to my constituents raised in the Jewish faith Israel’s right to exist.”
Despite the overwhelming passage by the House of a resolution condemning BDS, many Democratic politicians are torn about how much to support Israel. Rep. John Lewis voted for the resolution but also supports a bill that affirms the right to boycott. Go figure! And two leading presidential candidates have said that Israel should suffer reductions in aid for human rights violations.