College Trips to Israel Unethical?

horrendous-headlinesUCLA students running for their student government are being asked to sign a pledge that they will not travel to Israel on trips sponsored by certain pro-Israel organizations if elected.

The UCLA student newspaper reports that pro-BDS groups Students for Justice in Palestine and Jewish Voice for Peace, helped draft the “Joint Statement on Undergraduate Students Association Council Ethics.”

According to the statement, council members who sign the statement pledge to refrain from taking trips sponsored by AIPAC, the Anti-Defamation League, and Hasbara Fellowships.

Jonathon Tobin at Commentary called it the next step in the campus war on Jews:

The genesis of the effort at UCLA was, of course, the defeat of a pro-BDS motion by UCLA’s student government. But rather than debate the merits of a hate-driven motion whose purpose is to advance efforts to destroy Israel, the BDSers have decided that any vote cast by someone who had actually been to the Jewish state must be tainted by filing complaints with a student judicial board. Since the most potent threat to support for BDS is knowledge of what kind of country Israel is and the challenges it faces, their goal is to treat such trips as “unethical.”

Join the Fighting BDS Facebook page and take a stand against the delegitimization of Israel.

Indeed, the UCLA statement is a virtual case study in unethical behavior, but it has nothing to do with traveling to Israel.

The Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), which helped draft the statement, is not only openly pro-BDS, it even co-sponsors a five-day BDS Summer Institute: Summer Training on Divestment for Students.

So for the JVP, it’s unethical for students to receive training in Israel advocacy but those who want training in divestment can sign up for a program it helps run?

Yep, that pretty much defines the word hypocrisy. But then, ethics and honesty have never been part of the BDS strategy.

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