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October 16, 2017 4:31 pm

Austrian University Students Overwhelmingly Condemn BDS Movement as ‘Antisemitic’

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A pro-BDS demonstration. Photo: FOA / Facebook.

The Austrian National Union of Students on Friday condemned the boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement against Israel as antisemitic, and urged for it to not be given funds or event space.

The resolution received near unanimous support, with no votes against it and one abstention.

The union also adopted a version of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism, which includes “denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination.”

Leaders of the BDS movement have repeatedly gone on record claiming that Israel has no right to exist.

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The Austrian Union of Jewish Students applauded the passage of the resolution, saying in a statement on Friday, “This has been a big step in the fight against antisemitism and we are very happy that after our lobbying effort almost all factions have supported the motion.”

The group extended a “special thanks” to the Greens and Alternative Students (GRAS) for “their continuing support in the fight against all antisemitism.

In its own statement, the GRAS group condemned “the antisemitic BDS campaign and its spread in higher education,” and committed to speaking out against antisemitism.

In August 2016, the student council at Gemany’s prestigious Leipzig University — one of the oldest universities in the world — passed a resolution denouncing the BDS movement, saying its objective “fits seamlessly with the antisemitic campaigns of past centuries, and explicitly with that of the National Socialism; Nazi slogan ‘Don’t Buy From the Jews’ is once again being expressed here.”

Also last week, first-year candidates running for College Council at the University of Chicago “generally disagreed” with the body’s April 2016 resolution supporting BDS, the school’s newspaper reported.

One candidate said that advocacy for “specific international political issues” did not fit into the council’s mandate, while another noted that “BDS cripples the regional economy, hurting Jews and Palestinians alike.”

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  • Jeffrey

    The BDS Movement is a modern attempt for Anti-Semites to try and legitimize their hatred for the Jewish people by wrapping their vile malevolence in a disguise of helping the downtrodden. Haters of Israel and the Jewish people show themselves to be ignorant of the most basic facts regarding Israel, its Arab population and the history of the (or lack of) “Palestinians”, as most in the movement are blinded by myths and recycled loathing of the Jewish nation by sad purveyors of this sickness known as Anti-Semitism. The Jewish people will not only survive this but thrive as they have proven that they suffer better than anyone else and their resilience is second to none.

  • UR

    If ‘never again’ is to mean anything, Germany and Austria must learn from their history & show the way, as they are doing in very belatedly pointing to the N@zi origins, character and spirit of BDS. Would that they had done this a decade ago, before BDS and associated fascistic movements could show the rot taking hold of North American and European campuses, in a frightening aping of a not so distant history of scapegoating Jews, this time the nation not merely the people.

  • RonB51

    Thank you Austrian National Union of Students for your stand.

  • Thomas Kohlhauer

    I visit Germany and Austria every two years or so. I am fluent in German. I am 67 years olI am glad to see the University students in Austria look beyond the leftist propaganda of many American Universities (from which I graduated) to renewed understanding. On my last visit 2 years ago I warned that the Fluechtlinge are going to have half eindringlinge and a kulturkampf would result. It has happened. To see this response from these students is indeed enlightening.

  • Mr_Cohen

    I thank and praise the G_D OF ISRAEL for this step in the correct direction. May He decree abundant steps in the correct direction, and very soon.