Everything you need to know about fighting BDS and the assault on Israel’s legitimacy.
Today’s Top BDS Stories:
1. Israel’s deputy foreign minister, Ze’ev Elkin, offers his solution for combating BDS – a new joint Israel-Diaspora project called Face of Israel.
Often, the primary goal of BDS campaigns is to turn support for Israel from a widely supported fact to a controversial issue. In this respect publicly campaigning against BDS, and thus giving it more media attention, often undermines our position.
I believe the most effective way to combat delegitimization is a preemptive strike. We must not be limited to reacting to threats but rather must work actively to make Israel a positive part of the public consciousness.
2. New York Magazine has a story on SodaStream and its recent burst into the headlines thanks its decision to hire Scarlett Johansson as its brand advocate. The story sheds some light as to why the company is such a lightning rod for BDS activists.
SodaStream is an Israeli company with a manufacturing plant in occupied territory in the West Bank, a fact that enrages a politically informed, far-left segment of the liberal-yuppie demographic the product is marketed to. By bringing environmental foodie-ism into conflict with humanitarianism, SodaStream has turned the most inoffensive of soft drinks — Sustainable! Sugar-free! — into a political liability for civilians and celebrities alike as they attempt to buy and endorse the correct products.
Meanwhile, the New York Post praises Johansson for her “casual dismissal of the BDS crowd.”
3. Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper calls out those who delegitimize Israel in a speech before the Knesset:
“In much of the Western world, the old hatred has been translated into more sophisticated language for use in polite society,” Mr. Harper said.
“People who would never say they hate and blame the Jews for their own failings or the problems of the world instead declare their hatred of Israel and blame the only Jewish state for the problems of the Middle East.”
Other BDS-Related Content:
* Turkish news outlet Worldbulletin.net reports that a few European companies, including another Dutch pension fund, are close to boycotting Israel.
* A group of Jewish and Arab business leaders in Israel are calling on the government to reach a peace agreement with the Palestinians because the conflict – and the boycotts it engenders – is bad for business.
The group of Israeli businesspeople will come to Davos at the invitation of the forum’s chairperson Prof. Klaus Schwab, who intends to dedicate a day of the forum’s proceedings to discuss the peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Leaders from Israel’s business community will meet world leaders to convey one simple message: “The conflict harms everyone’s pockets.”