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How to Put BDS out of Business

Sept. 7 2017

Behind the movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel (BDS) are a number of organizations connected to terrorism. Existing counterterror laws, as well as recent anti-BDS laws that have been passed by several American states and European countries, can thus be used to shut down these groups’ bank accounts, or prevent them from using services like PayPal. Benjamin Weinthal and Asaf Romirowsky explain:

[M]any BDS organizations are entwined with states and other entities that advance hate groups and terrorism at large. The Dallas-based bank Comerica said in May that it closed the account of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL) due to a “business decision.” [But most likely] Texas’s Governor Greg Abbott’s ratification of an anti-BDS law in early May set the stage for the shutdown of the anti-Israel organization’s account. . . . As the Harvard jurist Alan Dershowitz [noted], IADL “was founded as a Communist front and supported financially by the Soviet Union. It is anti-democratic to its core and supportive of terrorism and repression.” . . .

The IADL is part and parcel of a dangerous, growing BDS cottage industry in the West. . . . The interplay between terrorism finance and BDS is perhaps best illustrated by BDS South Africa—the so-called “mothership” of the anti-Israel campaign. In 2015, Farid Esack—an Islamic theologian and head of BDS South Africa—held a series of fund-raisers with Leila Khaled, a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) who participated in the 1969 hijacking of a TWA jet. The United States and the EU have classified the PFLP as a terrorist organization. . . .

The neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer has [also] long been a supporter of BDS. And the German neo-Nazi party Der Dritte Weg (The Third Way) raises funds for its BDS activities using PayPal. Members of the Der Dritte Weg can be seen on the website at the Hizballah propaganda museum in Mleeta, Lebanon.

Both legal tools and public pressure, write Weinthal and Ramirowsky, can and should be used to make it difficult for these groups to keep doing business.

Read more at National Interest

More about: American law, BDS, Israel & Zionism, neo-Nazis, PFLP, Terrorism

 

Israel’s Economy Thrives While the Middle East Disintegrates

Jan. 19 2018

Now that the data have come in from 2017, it is clear that the Israeli economy had another successful year, expanding at a rate higher than that of any other advanced country. Israel’s per-capita GDP also grew, placing it above those of France and Japan. Daniel Kryger notes some of the implications regarding the Jewish state’s place in the Middle East:

The contrast between first-world Israel and the surrounding third-world Arab states is larger today than ever before. Israel’s GDP per capita is almost twenty times the GDP per capita of impoverished Egypt and five times larger than semi-developed Lebanon.

Like any human project, Israel is a never-ending work in progress and much work remains to integrate ḥaredi Jews and Israeli Arabs into Israel’s knowledge economy. Properly addressing Israel’s high costs of living requires more economic and legislative reforms and breaking up inefficient oligopolies that keep the prices artificially high. However, by any standard, the reborn Jewish state is a remarkable success story. . . .

Much has changed since OPEC launched its oil embargo against the West after the failed Arab aggression against Israel in October 1973. Before the collapse of the pro-Arab Soviet empire, China and India had no official ties with Israel and many Western and Japanese companies avoided doing business with Israel. Collapsing oil prices have dramatically eroded the power of oil-producing countries. It has become obvious that the future belongs to those who innovate, not those who happen to sit on oil. Israel has today strong commercial ties with China and a thriving partnership with India. Business delegations from Jamaica to Japan are eager to do business with Israel and benefit from Israel’s expertise. . . .

[For its part], the boycott, divest, and sanction (BDS) movement may bully Jewish and pro-Israel students on Western campuses. However, in real life, BDS stands no chance of succeeding against Israel. The reason is simple: reborn Israel has . . . become too valuable a player in the global economy.

Read more at Mida

More about: BDS, Israel & Zionism, Israeli economy, Middle East, OPEC