Despite clearly having a free pass to act with impunity, Israel — the occupying, nuclear-armed, apartheid state — still wants to eliminate the right to free speech and expression, as well as the right of justice-loving people to reject its military occupation and oppose it by all means. Western and European governments and institutions are weak and hypocritical and have basically surrendered their sovereignty under pressure from the pro-Israel Lobby funded by the extreme right-wing government in Israel. The Palestinians and their supporters, meanwhile, continue to exercise their legitimate right to oppose occupation and racism, and resist the Israeli oppressors.
Israeli Intelligence Agency Mossad makes War on Boycott-of-Israel Movement (BDS)
The decision to blacklist Airbnb had immediate impact. The University of Texas said no employee could use state funds to rent on Airbnb. Abbott similarly ordered that no public worker use Airbnb. Then, in April, Airbnb reversed the decision to remove its listings in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, and in May was taken off the Texas comptroller’s list.
“The decision to stand up for human rights should have been applauded by state lawmakers,” said Meera Shah, a senior staff attorney at Palestine Legal, a group that defends the speech rights of Palestinian rights advocates. “Instead, they elected to punish the company and force its hand and force it to walk back that decision.”
via God, Gas, and Cash: How Texas Fell in Love With Israel
Today the US Congress is weighing draft legislation based on problematic logic that conflates a call for businesses to stop operating in West Bank settlements, which are unlawful under the 1949 Geneva Conventions that prohibit transferring civilians into occupied territory, with a boycott of Israel.
Companies should fulfill their human rights responsibilities by ending operations in the settlements – yet the Israel Anti-Boycott Act (S. 720) would impose criminal penalties on businesses and nonprofits who stop doing business with Israel or Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory, erasing the distinction between Israel and the West Bank that the US has long recognized.
via Congress must reject Israel Anti-Boycott Act
“[As] professionals committed to food sovereignty and food access for all, we know that none of us can lend our names or our cooking skills to an Israeli government-sponsored culinary event such as this one. Our values around good food must include everyone, including the Palestinian people,” the appeal states. Slamming Israel’s theft of Palestinian food and culture, including its declaration of falafel as an “Israeli” dish, Israeli activists from the group Boycott from Within also urged participating chefs to drop out of the initiative. “Israel is a settler-colonial state, perpetrating the erasure of the indigenous Palestinian people, both physically and by means of appropriation of their culture, including indigenous food,” the activists wrote.
Source: Chefs take Israeli propaganda off the menu | The Electronic Intifada
You can be imprisoned if you disagree with the Israeli State and Australian (ODT)
Alqasem is a graduate of the University of Florida and a US citizen whose grandparents are Palestinian She tried to enter Israel to study on a Master’s degree programme at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, having been granted a student visa by the Israeli Consulate General in Miami.
Upon her arrival at the airport, Israeli officials denied the student entry. Her “crime”, according to the Strategic Affairs Ministry, is that while studying for her bachelor’s degree in Florida, she was president of an organisation that supported the BDS campaign against Israel.
via Israel Imprisoning Canary-Blackballed American Student at Airport support despite Valid Visa
Ireland leading the world (ODT)
The Irish Senate gave its support on Wednesday to a legislation prohibiting the import or sale of goods and services produced in occupied territories around the world, including Israeli settlements considered illegal under international law.
via Irish senate backs bill banning trade with Israeli settlements | News | Al Jazeera
Nora Barrows-Friedman Activism and BDS Beat 28 December 2017
The movement for Palestinian rights continues to grow across the world. (Alisdare Hickson/Flickr)
It took just four days for a world famous singer to cancel her Tel Aviv show in response to her fans’ urging her to respect the international picket line.
Lorde’s decision on Christmas Eve to pull the Tel Aviv show from her world tour – remarking that booking the gig in the first place “wasn’t the right call” – completed a successful year for the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement.
2017 saw artists, performers, athletes, politicians, cultural workers, faith-based organizations, students, academics, unions and activists grow the movement for Palestinian rights.
Israel has been taking notice, of course.
via What were the top BDS victories of 2017? | The Electronic Intifada
An interfaith group was stopped from boarding their flight in the US as Israel enforces ban on foreign BDS supporters.
Source: Israel challenges BDS at home and beyond | US & Canada | Al Jazeera
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…
Source: The war on Israeli BDS supporters | +972 Magazine
Norway’s largest trade union body has voted in favor of economic, cultural, and academic boycott of Israel over its treatment of Palestinians. In response, Tel Aviv said that the union “placed itself shoulder to shoulder with the worst enemies of Israel.”
Source: ‘Enough is enough’: Norway’s trade unions vote to boycott Israel over Palestine — RT News
Reut Institute founder says millions of anti-BDS dollars have made little impact.
Source: BDS is winning, admits top Israeli “sabotage” strategist | The Electronic Intifada
Palestinian activists and others have long faced actual travel bans, blacklists, and political persecution. Nevertheless, that some of the same methods are now being used against Israeli and American Jews is a worrying sign. One of the Israel government’s senior-most ministers said last year that Israeli BDS advocates must be made to pay a price for their political activism. A series of developments over the past month or so seem to demonstrate that he was completely serious, and that government efforts to target nonviolent political dissidents are escalating to worrying levels. [tmwinpost] First came the law banning entry into Israel…
Source: Blacklists and travel bans aren’t new in Israel — the targets are | +972 Magazine
The year will be “remembered as the year of Israel’s spectacular failure” as BDS continued to grow.
Source: What were the top 10 BDS victories of 2016? | The Electronic Intifada
A radical, left-wing British-Israeli has shaken up the race for the next president of the U.K.’s Union of Jewish students, and drawn international media attention. Eran Cohen talks BDS, diasporism, and being wounded by unfriendly IDF fire. By Matan Kaminer The election campaign for president of the U.K.’s Union of Jewish Students is not the kind of story you’d expect to be picked up by the international media. But Eran Cohen, a British-Israeli and a radical leftist, is not your usual kind of candidate, and his campaign has generated headlines in Jewish outlets in the U.S. and Israel. [tmwinpost] With political…
Source: Meet the radical Israeli looking to lead Britain’s Jewish students | +972 Magazine
As the Democratic party regroups ahead of the next election cycle, it would be wise for its leadership to examine areas where the Clinton campaign diverged from the party’s base. Israel-Palestine is one of those issues. The number of Americans who support imposing sanctions on Israel over its defiant settlement policies has shot up to 46 percent, the same percentage of Americans who voted for Donald Trump in the presidential election. [tmwinpost] That number has shot up nearly 10 percentage points over the past year, according to a national poll published by the Brookings Institute on Friday, on the sidelines…
Source: Nearly half of Americans support sanctions on Israel, poll finds | +972 Magazine
Israel’s campaign against the BDS movement threatens basic freedoms all over the world.
Source: Boycotting Israel is a free speech right | The Electronic Intifada
The boycott, divestment and sanctions movement is making headlines around the world for putting Israeli products in its crosshairs. But Israeli cultural icons and institutions have been boycotted for years. And while Israeli artists feel…
Source: WATCH: BDS hits the main stage | +972 Magazine