Friday, October 22nd | 17 Heshvan 5782

April 22, 2019 11:34 am

Buying the BDS Lies — Hook, Line, and Sinker

avatar by Emanuel Miller


A pro-BDS demonstration. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

It should be obvious to anyone that while the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement portrays itself as “merely” anti-Zionist, it is in actuality a movement frequently fueled by antisemitic intent and often supported by antisemitic individuals.

Although some may argue that anti-Zionism is not necessarily antisemitism, the reality is that the two often go hand-in-hand.

A sensible writer would at least consider the links between BDS and antisemitism, but alas Michelle Goldberg, a columnist at The New York Times, totally dismisses the serious charges against numerous BDS leaders and activists.

Goldberg’s recent Times column, “Anti-Zionists Deserve Free Speech,” explores the downsides of barring a “critic of Israel” from America, and flippantly claims that BDS leaders seek to distance themselves from antisemitism.

While the article covers “the assault on pro-Palestinian speech” and describes the denial of entry to BDS leader Omar Barghouti to America, it fails to acknowledge statements made by numerous leading BDS activists that shed light on the movement’s darker side.

For example, take John Spritzler, author, BDS leader, and activist:

I think the BDS movement will gain strength from forthrightly explaining why Israel has no right to exist.

As’ad Abu Khalil, California State University Professor of Political Science, BDS leader and activist:

The real aim of BDS is to bring down the State of Israel … this should be stated as an unambiguous goal.

If that wasn’t enough, Goldberg could have researched Barghouti himself, and found that the BDS founder had earlier pronounced:

Most definitely we oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine.

Separately, Barghouti clarifies that to him, “Palestine” actually means all of Israel.

Are these the words of those simply critical of Israel’s policies? Or are these the words of people with a vision of obliterating the world’s only Jewish state?

Goldberg’s article unquestioningly repeats the BDS claim about its official position:

Barghouti couches his opposition to Zionism in the language of humanist universalism. The official position of the BDS movement, he says, is that “any supremacist, exclusionary state in historic Palestine — be it a ‘Jewish state,’ an ‘Islamic state,’ or a ‘Christian state’ — would by definition conflict with international law and basic human rights principles.”

This may sound good to most people, but BDS is actually guilty of hypocrisy. If it were truly against all forms of discrimination in the area it terms “historic Palestine,” it would also call for a boycott of the Palestinian Authority, which outlaws the sale of land to Jews, punishing this heinous “crime” with the death penalty. Is this not the very definition of exclusionary?

By extension, Goldberg is guilty of allowing this hypocrisy to pass unchecked. Why does she fail to query the movement’s motives? Repeatedly, New York Times writers side with those who seek to spread the poison of anti-Israel rhetoric.

No newspaper or journalist is entitled to mislead the public. The BDS movement is openly and proudly dedicated to the destruction of the world’s only Jewish state, and is attempting to do so by violating U.S. law. If the Times supports this, then its editorial board should say so clearly and unambiguously.

Emanuel Miller is a writer for HonestReporting. A version of this article was originally published at HonestReporting.

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