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BDS

  • Without obtaining power, the Israeli Left will remain paralyzed

    If we want Israel to change, if we want the occupation to end, we have to operate in the existing political sphere. We cannot simply wait for the one we want. A response to Edo Konrad. By Maya Haber American neoconservatives have been wildly successful at bringing the Israeli Right back to power through a network of funds, think tanks, media outlets, and philanthropic initiatives. In an article published in Jewish Currents last week, I argued that progressive Israelis could achieve similar goals if we learn from these efforts and set our minds to work. [tmwinpost] In a response published…

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  • American Jews have the power to oppose Israel's gov't. Will they use it?

    Jewish American leaders are slowly beginning to understand just how vast the gap is between their values and those represented by the Israeli government. By Joshua Leifer Princeton University Hillel sparked controversy earlier this week after announcing it would indefinitely postpone a scheduled speech by Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely. The decision came after protests by students from the Alliance of Jewish Progressives and other groups, who claimed that Hillel had scheduled Hotovely’s speech without bringing it before the Israel Advisory Committee, an internal committee that vets Israel-related events and enforces Hillel’s “Israel Policy.” [tmwinpost] As the students highlighted in…

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  • Netanyahu can count on U.S. Jews to stay silent on the occupation

    The prime minister sparked controversy when he announced he wouldn't be speaking at the biggest Jewish American event of the year. But Bibi knows that no matter what, American Jews won’t speak out against his occupation policies. By Joshua Leifer Prime Minister Netanyahu knows that no matter what, he can count on American Jews not to speak out against the occupation. [tmwinpost] Netanyahu initially announced last week that he would not be addressing the annual Jewish Federation of North America’s General Assembly, prompting journalists and Jewish leaders alike to speculate. Unnamed “senior sources” intimated to Haaretz that the prime minister was…

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  • ‘A legal shield for the Palestine movement in the U.S.’

    The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit last week on behalf of a Kansas public school teacher who, as a condition for taking her job, was required under a new state law to declare that she would not engage in boycotts of Israel. The law is just one in a growing list of measures in recent years aiming to counter the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement in the United States. Political boycotts in the U.S. are meant to be stringently protected under the First Amendment. “The state should not be telling people what causes they can…

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  • ACLU launches first major challenge of anti-BDS legislation

    The lawsuit offers the most stark example yet of how anti-BDS legislation threatens Americans' First Amendment rights. The American Civil Liberties Union announced Wednesday that it had filed suit on behalf of a Kansas public school educator who was asked to disavow a boycott of Israel as a condition for payment. The case comes amid growing concerns that recent state-level legislation across the United States is chilling free speech among proponents of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement. [tmwinpost] The Kansas law, which came into effect on July 1 of this year, directs the state to "require written certification from all individuals and companies with which…

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  • Ousted Trump adviser: Liberal Jews are betraying U.S.-Israel relations

    The former White House aide with ties to an anti-Semitic organization says 'liberal elements of the American Jewish population have basically become anti-Israeli.' By Eli Clifton Recently-departed White House aide Sebastian Gorka never seemed to hold his tongue during his tenure as an adviser to President Donald Trump. He called criticism of the White House’s omission of Jewish victims of the Holocaust in a Holocaust Remembrance Day statement “asinine” and regularly attacked television anchors for their ratings, deriding them as “fake news.” [tmwinpost] But Gorka, who left the White House under unclear circumstances last Friday, was apparently holding back his vitriol for left-wing Jews,…

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  • Criminalizing support for Palestinian human rights

    Progressive American senators are having a hard time explaining their support for a law that would criminalize support for the Palestinian boycott movement, BDS. By James J. Zogby It is fascinating to watch some U.S. senators tripping over themselves as they attempt to defend their support for or opposition to proposed legislation that would make it a federal crime to support the international campaign to Boycott, Divest, or Sanction (BDS) Israel for its continued occupation of Palestinian lands. What ties these officials up in knots are their efforts to square the circle of their "love of Israel," their opposition to…

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  • Israeli activists demand government publish BDS blacklists

    Israeli human rights activists file an appeal to force the Israeli government to come clean on its so-called blacklists of foreign nationals who support the boycott movement. By Yael Marom A group of Israeli human rights activists filed an appeal to the Jerusalem District Court Thursday morning to try and force the Israeli government to reveal the so-called "blacklists" of foreign nationals, who are prevented entry into Israel due to their support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. The Israeli activists, represented by Attorney Eitay Mack, filed the petition after the Population and Immigration Authority refused to provide them with the…

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  • The war on Israeli BDS supporters

    Israel's minister of strategic affairs is gathering intelligence and compiling blacklists on Israeli citizens who support the boycott movement. By Amnon Portugaly These days Gilad Erdan, Israel's minister of public security and strategic affairs, is promoting a new law that would exclude his ministry from governmental oversight. This is a step meant to help fight the BDS movement, while also granting legitimacy to gathering intelligence on Israeli citizens who are involved in the movement to boycott Israel. [tmwinpost] In June, Haaretz reported that the Strategic Affairs Ministry, which Erdan heads, would essentially be shielded from certain provisions in the Freedom of Information…

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  • How David Grossman got drafted into the fight against BDS

    Culture Minister Miri Regev is ramping up her battle against cultural boycotts by enlisting luminaries such as David Grossman. It's time Israeli artists who believe in democracy to stand up and be brave. By Ari Remez The annual Israeli Theater Prize ceremony, held every year in the northern city of Acre, recently took place without a hitch. This, despite the fact that the Jewish Israeli mayor of the city backed a decision to censor a play by Israeli actor Einat Weitzman, and while the Arabic-speaking Al-Midan Theatre in Haifa remains closed. The artistic teams behind the winning works at the ceremony stood on stage alongside Minister of Culture…

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  • America's BDS law is an attack on far more than free speech

    The world long ago made clear to the Palestinians that violence is not a legitimate path for seeking independence. Now Congress is trying to criminalize one of the few nonviolent tools left. A pair of laws currently making their way through the United States Congress would impose criminal sanctions on Americans who support an economic boycott of Israel or its illegal West Bank settlements. The bill follows in the footsteps of, and in some was surpasses the dozens of American states that have passed their own anti-boycott laws in recent years. [tmwinpost] The Senate bill, S. 720, known as the “Anti-Israel…

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  • Rattling the Gilded Cage: An Interview with Larry Derfner

    “No Country for Jewish Liberals,” by Larry Derfner, Just World Books, 260 pp., $26.95 Moving to Israel was an experiment of sorts for Larry Derfner. As a journalist, it was an attempt to advance his career. More significantly, at least with the benefit of hindsight, it was an attempt to reconcile the intoxicating appeal of muscular nationalism with the liberal values he absorbed in his Los Angeles home and by coming of age in the Vietnam-era anti-war movement. It was easier to be liberal in the United States because the real-world consequences of dovish policies rarely put you at personal…

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  • 'Israel Hayom' outs prominent Jewish American BDS activist

    Israel's most widely-circulated newspaper outs Ariel Gold, just months after the Knesset passes law banning entry to anyone who encourages boycotting Israel.  By Yael Marom Under the headline "BDS activist tricks authorities, enters Israel against protocol," Israel Hayom, the country's most widely-circulated daily newspaper, published an article last Thursday that outed Jewish American activist Ariel Gold over her support for boycotting Israel. The article, written by Shimon Yaish and Yair Altman, provided a golden opportunity to make sure the interior minister was made aware of the situation, after the Knesset passed legislation earlier this year banning foreign nationals who support the boycott of the country from…

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