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Today’s Top BDS Stories:
1. Benjamin Netanyahu calls BDS a form of classic anti-Semitism. Lots of media outlets picked up on the comments.
“In the past anti-Semites boycotted Jewish businesses and today they call for the boycott of the Jewish state, and by the way, only the Jewish state,” Netanyahu said. “I think that it is important that the boycotters be exposed for what they are, they are classical anti-Semites in modern garb.”
Reuters focused on a different element of Netanyahu’s speech at the Conference of Presidents. Netanyahu said Israel would defeat boycotts through the high demand in its high-tech sector.
On the same note, Trade Minister Naftali Bennett pointed to the recent purchase of technology firm Viber for $900 million as evidence that Israel’s economy is marching forward.
2. Music industry insider slams Roger Waters for “trading in classic anti-Semitic stereotypes” in his quest for cultural boycott against Israel.
What consequences has Roger Waters faced for his far more extreme words and positions? As far as I can tell, none.
He continues to tour extensively throughout the world, making tens of millions. He was asked to play in the high-profile Madison Square Garden concert a year ago for Hurricane Sandy victims. He gave the keynote address at Billboard’s 2013 Annual Touring Conference. His music (and the music of Pink Floyd) continues to be played everywhere.
In short, Waters has gotten a “free pass” from the music industry and the world, despite his hateful views — which, had he expressed them about any other religious or ethnic group, or about gays, would certainly bring much more outrage from the media and his fans.
3. Dutch and Italian companies withdraw from bid on Haifa port.
Haaretz stated the decision of the construction companies to withdraw signalled a “deterioration of Israel’s international standing”.
The BDS movement is led by the pro-Palestinian intelligentsia and activists who question the legitimacy of Israel as a state and campaign for a rejection of all Israeli goods.
Other BDS-Related Content:
* Former presidential candidate calls BDS movement “embarrassingly stupid.”
Former Republican candidate Mike Huckabee paid a visit to Israel and spoke out about the boycott movement.
“The BDS movement is embarrassingly stupid because Israel represents the one place [in the Middle East] where freedom exists,” he said, adding that Israel is the only state in the Middle East that would allow a Christian to open a church, and yet it’s the only one that’s libeled as an apartheid state.
* Instead of being an advocate for Israel, try being a character witness for the state. That’s the advice proposed by noted political advisor Tal Becker:
“An advocate for Israel is someone who has the arguments in front of them to make the case. And very often, the fact that you have ‘advocate’ written on your forehead means that someone is not gonna listen to you.”
“A character witness says: ‘you know what, I know those Israelis,” he continued. “‘Now you know what, they may not get it right every time. But I’ve met them, I’ve spoken to them about the dilemmas that that country faces, and I know that they can bring to those dilemmas values that the Western world shares.”
* Letters from PLO ideologue Hanan Ashrawi and BDS founder Omar Barghouti’s brother Nasser appear in today’s New York Times. Both letters take issue with recent articles that questioned the motives of the BDS movement.
Graphic credit: Five Minutes for Israel website http://5mfi.com/posters-and-imposters-2014/
See yesterday’s Fighting BDS Roundup.