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January 11, 2021 5:05 pm

Jewish Comedian Sarah Silverman Explains Why She’s ‘Not Against BDS,’ Accuses Israel of Occupation in New Podcast Episode

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Sarah Silverman speaking at the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con International in San Diego, California. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore.

Jewish comedian and actress Sarah Silverman supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement as long as it protests Israel’s government and its “occupation,” and not the country’s citizens, she said Thursday.

During the Jan. 7 episode of “The Sarah Silverman Podcast,” the show’s host, 50, told her listeners, “I’m fine with BDS, as long as it’s clear that you are boycotting a government and not a people. When that line gets muddy, that’s when it’s a little scary as a Jew.”

Silverman, who lists her Twitter location as the “state of Palestine,” then citied the boycott movement against the South African apartheid in the 1980s, saying, “I think divesting from South Africa made a real difference in ending apartheid. I’m not against BDS. I’m against ‘Jews are pro-occupation.’ It’s absurd. Not all Jews are for the occupation.”

She noted that there are “myriad” Jewish-led organizations that “fight the occupation everyday” and said, “I hope for a peaceful end to [the] occupation. Unfortunately, Israel and the Palestinian Authority, and Hamas, also have to want an end to the occupation … It ain’t just Israel that benefits from the occupation in various ways. And that seems to be a well kept secret.”

On Saturday, Silverman shared on Instagram a short clip of her talking about Israel and the BDS movement from the Jan. 7 podcast episode. In the episode she also said “I agree 100 percent that criticizing Israel is not antisemitism” and claimed that “people like their Jews suffering.”

“When Jews aren’t suffering, when God forbid they’re thriving, people don’t like that,” she explained. “It’s why we’re so conditioned to complain. It’s how we know how to get love. I mean I am talking out of my ass, but it seems like something’s there.”

 

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