Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Failing Boycott Campaign?

The claim that BDS efforts are failing is a favorite of pro-Israel opponents of BDS. Just this past weekend, in reaction to Madonna performing her "peace concert" Israel, the Board of Deputies of British Jews claimed that comparisons with apartheid-era South Africa were "a specious and desperate effort by a failing boycott campaign." 

Let's list some of these "failures" in the past few months:
  • Arizona State University student government votes to divest from Israel
  • Student-Run Cafe at The Evergreen State College Announces Boycott of Israeli Products
  • South Africa and Denmark to correctly label Israeli settlement products
  • World United Methodist Church Recommends Boycotts & Sanctions
  • UK Co-op boycotts exports from Israel's West Bank settlements
  • UMASS- Boston Student Senate Passes Resolution Calling for Divestment from Boeing
  • M.E.Ch.A., the largest association of Latin@ youth in the United States, voted to endorse BDS call
  • Two US Delegations Endorse BDS and Call for Action in the United States
  • Madonna may have played in Israel and the Red Hot Chili Peppers have yet to cancel their planned performance (more than 6,000 people have signed a petition asking them to respect the BDS call) but the list of artists who have cancelled concerts and events in Israel include the late Gil Scott-Heron, Elvis Costello, the Pixies, Mike Leigh, Klaxons and Gorillaz Sound System. Coldplay, U2 and Bruce Springsteen have declined invitations to play in Israel without supporting the boycott publicly.
If BDS were such a failure, why then waste time filing lawsuits, urging people to buy Israeli products or spending millions of dollars to fight against BDS efforts? 

The Presbyterian Church (USA) will vote on divestment from Caterpillar, HP and Motorola Solutions next month. Sign this letter of support and check out other ways you can get involved in BDS work