Saturday, February 14, 2015

The Rising Tide of BDS on California Campuses

Behind a paywall at Haaretz, a  glimpse into the opaque funding of the BDS movement on California campuses. According to Dr. Andy David  the Israeli Consul General in San Francisco, there are 133 anti-Israel organizations, with an estimated budget of 9 million dollars a year in the Bay area  “including 95 full-time people who do nothing else" .

There is nothing grass roots about it. Yet for all its funding and all its efforts, the BDS movement on campus has yielded almost no tangible results

The Rising tide of BDS on California Campuses

...Prof. Ron Hassner at Berkeley’s political science department isn’t overly impressed with the BDS movement’s achievements.

In not one instance has a vote for BDS affected campus policy — in fact, California campuses and universities throughout the United States quickly declare they won’t change their policies toward Israel or companies, regardless of the student vote, he says. 

“In other words, this starts as student politics and ends as students politics .... And since it doesn’t affect university policy, it goes without saying that it has no effect on Israel,” Hassner says. “It also has no effect on Palestine because these resolutions aren’t aimed at supporting Palestinians. They aren’t pro-Palestinian but rather anti-Israeli resolutions, which is a shame.” 

Students are missing chances to reach out to Palestinians and offer financial, material and emotional support, he says. 

“These repeated votes have had one effect only: a deterioration of the campus climate leading to outbursts of anger and even violence,” Hassner says, adding that Jewish students have been subject to verbal abuse and sometimes physical abuse amid a steady rise in anti-Semitic incidents. 

“These anti-Jewish outbursts are not surprising since the anti-Semitism is rooted in the BDS movement itself,” he says. 

“At divestment meetings on my campus, BDS opponents have accused Israelis of putting rats in the vaginas of Palestinian women, stealing Palestinian organs and poisoning the water in Gaza. You’ll recognize these as classic anti-Semitic tropes from 19th-century Polish blood libels, for example.”

Read it all at Haaretz

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