Don’t Give in to BDS Intimidation
When South African model Shashi Naidoo attacked Hamas on Instagram for being a terrorist group that uses foreign aid to build terror tunnels and rockets she was subjected to a torrid campaign of abuse. This included the loss of almost all of her endorsements, as well as hate mail and actual death threats.
Under undoubtedly extreme pressure, she backtracked, appearing at a media conference with the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement, pledging to “reeducate” herself about the conflict. In other words, she adopted the BDS position.
I don’t want to overly criticize Shashi for “changing” her position, because when your life has been threatened and you are in actual physical danger, it’s hard to maintain such an unpopular stand. It takes someone with an incredible amount of strength and courage to stand up against the enormous amount of fear, stress, and pressure that she must have felt. Not everyone has the ability to do that.
Instead, we should be targeting the antisemitic thugs behind it all, i.e. the BDS movement itself.
BDS is a movement created from hatred itself. They feed on the misery they sow. They fester off the pain they cause. And they celebrate the havoc that they wreak.
They want the world to believe that they stand for freedom, justice, and equality — and to the gullible uninformed masses they do. But the reality is far different.
This is an organization of bullies who use intimidation, coercion, and violent threats as part of their standard methodology, because they lack the ability to argue their case with words, logic, and truth.
They are not seeking to end “Israel’s occupation and colonization of Palestinian land” as they claim. Instead, they are seeking to end Israel itself, through any means possible.
And make no mistake about it, they do not care about Palestinian lives either. This was proven a few years ago when they launched a brutal and aggressive campaign against SodaStream, forcing the relocation of that company’s factory from Judea and Samaria to southern Israel. This led to 500 Palestinian workers losing their jobs and their livelihoods. The BDS “victory” meant increased hardships for the people they were supposedly trying to help. And this scenario has played out similarly in other situations over the years.
Ultimately the battle between BDS and Israel is a battle between lies and the truth, and oppression and freedom. We must be the voice of light to vanquish their darkness, and that includes being a voice for those who have been intimidated into silence.
Justin Amler is a South African-born, Australia-based writer and commentator on international issues.