I totally agree with the comment that ‘Boycotting isn’t a “punishment” to be meted out proportionately to all offenders as a form of global citizen justice.’ I would like to expand a little, however, on this whole issue of ‘unfairness’ or ‘double standards’ when it comes to boycotting Israel versus, say, Saudi Arabia. This is always the whine.
For me, the issue is that I DO have a double standard, if you like to call it that. I do, or perhaps, sadly now, used to think that Israel was simply a more ethical country than, say, Saudi Arabia. Apparently the Israeli Government thinks that Saudi Arabia, even ISIS/ISIS/IS is the standard that Israel should aim at. Hence the ‘double standard’ complaint. Why should Israel be treated differently? Criticised more? Boycotted? it cries, when SA and ISIS aren’t.
Well, if it wants Israel to be treated similarly in terms of strong criticism, then I would point out that, as I understand it, currently Iran and Russia are under sanctions. Would Israel prefer that to BDS?
But deep down, I know that the real reason that I support BDS being applied to Israel, is that being Jewish, I am linked to Israel, whether I like it or not. I gew up with the JNF Blue Box. Israel was the natural place to go to. I have distant relatives there…So yes, I expect better of Israel. I am emotionally involved when I read about what Israel is doing re Palestine and Palestinians. By the same token I feel tainted by Israel’s brutality. The same feelings do not apply when I read of ISIS’s revolting actions. I am revolted and appalled, but it’s that bit more distant. I would support action against ISIS, but again, without quite the same emotional charge I feel about Israel. Israel proclaims it is a Jewish State, so it drags me into its orbit, against my will. That’s why, for me, there is a double standard. And I defend it.