Three weeks after Israel’s latest assault on the Gaza Strip concluded, Israeli military and political leaders attended a conference next to Ben Gurion Airport to sell the successes of what Israel dubbed Operation Protective Edge, which killed more than 2,200 Palestinians including 521 children. The annual conference, named “Israel Unmanned Systems 2014,” took place in business-as-usual atmosphere — even with a complimentary beer keg. But the fare was anything but humdrum.
Palestinian efforts to encourage a boycott of Israel, modeled on the South African anti-apartheid global campaign, is gaining momentum as a democratic movement
On 9 August, hundreds of thousands of people worldwide took to the streets in response to a call from Palestinian civil society in the occupied and besieged Gaza Strip, and the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions, National Committee (BNC), for a Day of Rage.
This mobilization comes as grassroots pressure mounts on complicit Western governments to impose a military embargo on Israel.
In its nine-year existence, the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement has boldly redefined the battle for Palestine in the simple, straightforward terms of human rights. More than any other tactic of the Palestinian liberation movement, the BDS campaign has succeeded in creating a global outpouring of support for Palestinian rights and placed Israel’s violations of them under international scrutiny like never before.
In the United States, the issue of Palestinian rights has gone from the margins of the Left and Arab and Muslim communities into mainstream discourse and debate.
As Israel’s primary patron of economic, military and diplomatic support, the United States has a duty and the capacity to help resolve the Palestinian-Israel conflict. It should either comply with its domestic laws and cease military aid to Israel or simply step aside and allow international mechanisms to function without obstruction.
Ending aid will either restrain Israel and facilitate a political resolution or encourage a backlash that induces the global community to intervene.
Between 1949 and 2008, the U.S.
Professor Haidar Eid, steering committee member with the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, writes for the Socialism and Democracy journal on strategies of solidarity.
This statement was issued for Archbishop emeritus Tutu by Oryx Media
I am writing today to express grave concern about a wave of legislative measures in the United States aimed at punishing and intimidating those who speak their conscience and challenge the human rights violations endured by the Palestinian people.