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February 28, 2017 8:18 am

UK’s Former Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Releases Animated Video to Equip Jewish Students With Tools to Counter ‘Vicious’ BDS Activity on Campus

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Photo: Video Screenshot.

Photo: Video Screenshot.

An animated video written and narrated by Britain’s former chief rabbi — to arm students with the tools to confront hostility on campus — was released Monday, at the height of “Israeli Apartheid Week” activities at universities across the world.

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks said in a statement that the content of the six-minute clip debunks the “dangerously wrong” claims of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, by highlighting that its purpose is actually “to delegitimize Israel as a prelude to its elimination.”

“The Jewish people’s fight against BDS is a serious challenge. We need to utilize every resource possible in defense of the state of Israel, making our arguments in increasingly innovative and creative ways in order to capture the widest attention,” Sacks said. “This includes battling the vicious hatred of Israel that occurs online.”

In the video, Sacks says he “supports the right of Palestinians to a state of their own and the right of Palestinian children to a future of dignity and hope.” However, he adds, “The BDS campaign will achieve neither of these things.”

Israeli Apartheid Week is an annual series of events held throughout February and March every year, with programming that includes mock checkpoints and calls for divestment and boycott campaigns. Members of leading advocacy groups in the UK recently told The Algemeiner that they were gearing up to “proactively” counter these events.

Watch Rabbi Sacks’s video on the BDS Campaign below:

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  • Reb_Yaakov

    Notably, the video presents its case from a positive and not just a negative standpoint. When it is negative, it is opposing ideas or a movement rather than demonizing individuals, as secular right wing ideologues frequently do when they scapegoat leftists or Arabs/Muslims.

    The commonly heard charge that Israel is stealing the Arabs’ land is countered (without directly stating so) by pointing out that the surrounding Arabs have repeatedly tried to steal land that legitimately belongs to Israel by waging war against it in their attempt to have it all for themselves.

    This short video, of course, does not address the disputed territories, although most reasonable people would understand that land captured by Israel in a war it did not begin need not be returned immediately in the absence of a peace agreement. On the other hand, expansion of the settlements has drawn attention away from these other issues and has damaged Israel’s image and given the anti-Israel movement a rallying point.

    Hopefully, this video will be seen by many and will encourage people to maintain an objective and evenhanded approach, free of falsities and prejudicial thinking.