Lectures by Terrorists, and the Universities That Allow Them

Sept. 3 2020

Leila Khaled’s claim to fame is having participated in a hijacking on behalf of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) in 1969, and—after using plastic surgery to disguise her identity—attempting a second one two years later. Still an active member of the PFLP leadership, Khaled is also a hero to the supposedly nonviolent movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction the Jewish state (BDS), as well as a popular speaker. Later this month, she is scheduled to lead an online seminar on “gender, justice, and resistance” at San Francisco State University. Jonathan Marks comments:

Khaled has indicated any number of times [that] she is in favor of violence against Israel. . . . It’s almost as if BDS isn’t dedicated to nonviolence, except as an adjunct to violence.

The real story here, [however], is less the event itself . . . than the mainstreaming of this kind of thing in the academy. . . . Last year, the Women’s Resource Center at San Diego State University was compelled to apologize for using images of Khaled in one of its newsletters. That the center apologized tells us that Khaled isn’t, after all, quite mainstream. But that she made her way into that most bureaucratic of productions, a newsletter put out by an academic administrative unit, also tells us that the cocktail of violence, anti-Americanism, and anti-Semitism Khaled represents causes no one to bat an eyelash until someone points a finger.

Perhaps because no one much cares about them, small programs like [San Francisco State’s center for Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies] can afford to hug a terrorist on Zoom. But what can be said of more mainstream elements within our colleges and universities that wink at or reward this kind of behavior? Nothing flattering.

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Read more at Commentary

More about: BDS, Israel on campus, Palestinian terror, PFLP

Will Costco Go to Israel?

Social-media users have mocked this week new Israeli finance minister Bezalel Smotrich for a poorly translated letter. But far more interesting than the finance minister’s use of Google Translate (or some such technology) is what the letter reveals about the Jewish state. In it, Smotrich asks none other than Costco to consider opening stores in Israel.

Why?

Israel, reports Sharon Wrobel, has one of the highest costs of living of any country in the 38-member Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

This

has been generally attributed to a lack of competition among local importers and manufacturers. The top three local supermarket chains account for over half of the food retail market, limiting competition and putting upward pressure on prices. Meanwhile, import tariffs, value-added tax costs and kosher restrictions have been keeping out international retail chains.

Is the move likely to happen?

“We do see a recent trend of international retailers entering the Israeli market as some barriers to food imports from abroad have been eased,” Chen Herzog, chief economist at BDO Israel accounting firm, told The Times of Israel. “The purchasing power and technology used by big global retailers for logistics and in the area of online sales where Israel has been lagging behind could lead to a potential shift in the market and more competitive prices.”

Still, the same economist noted that in Israel “the cost of real estate and other costs such as the VAT on fruit and vegetables means that big retailers such as Costco may not be able to offer the same competitive prices than in other places.”

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Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Costco, Israel & Zionism