Sunday, July 19, 2015

Sunday Globe Special: BDS Success

I always check the UPC:

"Palestinian activists’ campaign gains strength, alarming Israel; Global boycott movement hits nation’s policies" by Tia Goldenberg Associated Press  July 12, 2015

JERUSALEM — Ten years ago, a small group of Palestinian activists had a novel idea: Inspired by the antiapartheid movement, they called for a global boycott movement against Israel as a nonviolent method to promote the Palestinian struggle for independence. 

It's the only card you really have.

Long confined to the sidelines, the so-called BDS movement appears to be gaining momentum — so much so that Israel has identified it as a strategic threat on a par with Palestinian militant groups and the Iranian nuclear program. 

OMG! The hyperbolic chutzpah!

While Israel says the movement is rooted in anti-Semitism, its decentralized organization and language calling for universal human rights have proved difficult to counter, resulting in a string of recent victories that have alarmed Israeli leaders. 

That's the only card Israel has to play, and it no longer works. It's the policies, stupid!

‘‘We are now beginning to harvest the fruits of 10 years of strategic, morally consistent, and undeniably effective BDS campaigning,’’ said Omar Barghouti, one of the group’s founders. ‘‘BDS is winning the battles for hearts and minds across the world, despite Israel’s still hegemonic influence among governments in the US and Europe.’’ 

That pesky Internet has helped a lot, and that genie isn't going back in even if the lights go dark.

The BDS movement — named for its call for boycotts, divestment, and sanctions against Israel — began as an idea by 170 Palestinian civil society groups worldwide in 2005. It has grown into a global network of thousands of volunteers lobbying corporations, artists, and academic institutions to sever ties with Israel.

Its members include campus activists, church groups, and even liberal American Jews disillusioned by Israeli policies.

Self-hating Jews, no doubt.

Most worrying for Israel, some of the group’s core positions toward products made in West Bank settlements are starting to be embraced by European governments.

Although the EU says it opposes boycotts of Israel, it is exploring guidelines for labeling settlement products, which many in Israel fear could be a precursor to a full-fledged ban. Settlement products, which make up a tiny percentage of Israeli exports, include wines, dates, and cosmetics.

At a time when peace efforts are frozen and show no sign of getting back on track under a new hard-line government, Israelis fear such sentiment will increase.

‘‘The concern is that there will be a spillover to a much wider phenomenon that will become mainstream and erode support for Israel,’’ said Emmanuel Nahshon of Israel’s Foreign Ministry.

Okay, it's already mainstream so he's in delusion there. The other thing to note is there is no talk of Israel changing course or action here. It's all concern, concern, concern. 

The BDS movement has three goals: to end Israel’s occupation of territories captured in the 1967 Mideast war, to end discrimination suffered by Arab citizens of Israel, and to promote the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to family properties lost in the war surrounding Israel’s creation in 1948.

All subject to negotiation and approval by Palestinians, of course.

For Israel, this last position is nothing less than a call for its destruction. 

It's not that, but maybe they are compensated? I know Israel likes the loot, and it could get expensive, but they could transfer  Holocaust™ racket dough for it.

Israel opposes the Palestinian ‘‘right of return,’’ saying a massive influx of refugees would mean the end of the country as a Jewish state.

Aside from the racist apartheid exhibited by Jewish supremacists, maybe the answer is to make it one big Palestine. Case closed. 

The international community favors a ‘‘two-state solution’’ creating a Palestinian state alongside Israel, and even Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has indicated willingness to compromise on the refugee issue under a final peace deal.

The offer of compromise is ignored, and....

Israel's Slow-Motion Genocide in Occupied Palestine
That map on the right was back in 2005. That means there is even less green now. I don't see how you create a two-state solution, even with land swaps.
Barghouti, a US-educated engineer who also holds a graduate degree at Israel’s Tel Aviv University, said the BDS movement is ‘‘completely neutral’’ on the political solution to the conflict. But he said he represents the Palestinian ‘‘consensus,’’ and any deal that ‘‘undermines our basic rights under international law and perpetuates the colonial oppression’’ is unacceptable.
As for his attendance at a university he asks others to boycott, he said Palestinians ‘‘cannot possibly observe the same boycott guidelines as asked of internationals,’’ adding that the ‘‘indigenous population’’ is entitled to all services they can get from the system.

Because they are under siege from that same power.

Israeli leaders see the movement as the latest move by antagonists out to destroy the Jewish people. ‘‘We are in the midst of a great struggle being waged against the state of Israel, an international campaign to blacken its name,’’ Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said. ‘‘It is not connected to our actions. It is connected to our very existence.’’

That's not true. It is the actions, and the constant whining and crying of victimhood as well as the never-ending threat of extermination is getting real old.

The BDS movement is led by a West Bank-based national committee with representatives from around the world, which sets guidelines but allows local branches to decide their own strategy. It focuses on battles with a reasonable chance of success. So some of the biggest companies active in Israel, such as Microsoft and Intel, have not been targeted.

I guess it's a partial success then.


As with most articles involving Israel, it's a one-day wonder (as opposed to the fossil fuel divesters and other controlled-opposition pressure organizations).  I suppose we are lucky they covered BDS at all.


The other side of it, the enabling, if you will:

"Carter to emphasize US military ties to Israel; Visit to Mideast aims to promote deal with Iran" by Robert Burns Associated Press   July 20, 2015

TEL AVIV — Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is scheduled to meet with Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon on Monday and with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday before traveling to Saudi Arabia and Jordan to consult on the implications of the Iran deal and to assess progress in the regional campaign against the Islamic State.

Look, he had to run right over there!

In his remarks to reporters traveling with him, Carter repeatedly mentioned that the Iran deal places no limitations on the US defense strategy or its military presence in the Middle East, which includes warplanes, an aircraft carrier, and tens of thousands of troops.

He gave no indication, however, that the Pentagon plans to immediately bolster that presence, which is anchored by the Navy’s Fifth Fleet headquarters in Bahrain, an air operations center in Qatar, and a military headquarters in Kuwait running the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

They are trickling back into Iraq, and now you have a sense of the other bases the U.S. has in the region.

In Washington, the lobbying fight over the pact with Iran has started. The State Department said Sunday it had submitted the agreement to Congress, kicking off a 60-day review period Monday.

Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to the United States, is trying to convince lawmakers that the deal is a historic mistake. On the other side, some liberal groups warned of political consequences for Democrats who undermine the agreement and cast opposition as a vote for war.

The debate there is the hardline Zionist AIPAC against the lightline Zionist J-Street. My Zionist war paper leaves it vague. 

Multimillion-dollar ad campaigns are underway by politically influential groups in each camp.

Keep that in mind.

Secretary of State John Kerry and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz made the rounds of the Sunday news shows and are set to brief lawmakers this week.

I never watch those anymore.


President Obama used his weekend radio address to try to counter what he predicted would be “a lot of overheated and often dishonest arguments” in the weeks ahead.

See: Iran Deal No Good

Related: Obama Takes Aim at AIPAC

Also seeReading the Iranian Agreement

I don't need to; I have the Bo$ton Globe to do it for me!

In his press briefing Sunday, Carter previewed the message he will convey to Israel, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia on behalf of Obama, who already has called a number of Mideast leaders to reaffirm US support and to explain the Iran deal.

“This is a good deal,” Carter said. “It removes a critical element of danger, threat, and uncertainty from the region.”

Carter said the deal accomplishes this in a way that can be verified not only by the United States but by the international community.

Asked whether he thinks the Iran accord makes it more likely Israel will launch a preemptive military strike on Iran, Carter noted that the United States has discussed military options with Israel for years. He said the deal does nothing to remove that option.

The US-Israel defense relationship has deepened in recent years, even as tensions on how to contain Iran’s nuclear program have grown.

The United States has invested hundreds of millions in an Israeli air defense system known as Iron Dome, designed to shoot down short-range rockets, mortars, and artillery shells fired into northern Israel from southern Lebanon and into Israel’s south from the Gaza Strip.

The United States has also worked with Israel on a wide range of other defenses. Two years ago, the Pentagon committed to providing advanced radars for Israel’s fleet of fighter jets and KC-135 refueling aircraft and to making Israel the first country to buy the V-22 Osprey hybrid airplane-helicopter.

Two months ago, Washington announced a $1.9 billion arms sale to Israel for a range of missiles and bombs, including bunker busters that can penetrate reinforced defenses to reach underground targets. Not included is the Pentagon’s biggest bunker-buster bomb.

Israeli officials insist they are not prepared to discuss American “compensation” for the Iran deal, saying that would imply acceptance of the accord. Israel believes there are loopholes in the deal that will allow Iran to emerge as a nuclear power eventually.

“Everybody talks about compensating Israel,” Netanyahu said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.” “I guess the question you have to ask yourself is, if this deal is supposed to make Israel and our Arab neighbors safer, why should we be compensated with anything?”

This guy is really an extreme jerk! They whine, they cry, the extort, they blackmail, and then they say, hey, if it were a good deal why do we need to be paid off yet again?

The United States and Israel have been holding talks on renewing a 10-year defense pact set to expire in 2018. Under the current deal, Israel receives about $3 billion in military aid from the United States each year.

This as America's social service budgets are slashed. For a prosperous country, we are told.


The more you look through the Zionist prism of the world, the more foreign you feel:

"We’ll always be the foreigners" by Stephen Kinzer   July 20, 2015

Even though the United States has plenty of good ideas about how to run countries, many countries don’t adopt them.


This frustrates Americans. We have learned a difficult truth that makes modern wars so difficult to win: Many people don’t like to side with foreigners, no matter how good their ideas may be.

The main reason people in other countries often reject American advice is it comes from somebody who is “not from here.” This cripples any interventionist project. It means that no matter how hard we try to create friendly regimes in countries we invade or occupy, in the long run we are destined to fail simply because we come from far away.

Ignore the death, destruction, and privation caused by policy until that point. 

I mean, the level of arrogance and the acceptance of the narrative regarding AmeriKan exceptionalism coming from such a smart guy.... ugh! 

RelatedReport on interrogation tactics roils academics

Apparently torture is not only a good idea to run a country, it's a good way to ingratiate yourselves with the torturers and further a career.

We imagine that our ideas will attract people to us.

I used to think that when I was young, to many a rude awakening.

In fact, ideas are often secondary. More important is: Be from here. People often prefer solutions made at home, even bad ones, to those imported from the other side of the world.

That holds true here at home, too. I wouldn't want China or Russia invading to fix things.

In some countries, patriots are more eager to be free of foreign influence than to have good government. This is difficult for Americans to grasp. We don’t know the humiliation of living under a government dominated by a foreign power.


The recent demonstration of AIPAC power on Capitol Hill would tend to argue against that.

How can Kinzer be so blind?

Yet this is part of recent historical memory for millions around the world — and for many, “foreign power” means the United States. 

And here at home, too -- although that memory is being erased by political correctness even as I type this.

If the bad news is that most of our military adventures are doomed to failure, there is also good news. We have another way to influence foreign countries. The triumph of American popular culture in the world is total. With sneakers and pop stars come ideas we want to promote. These ideas transform societies. Cultural imperialism, sometimes called “soft power,” is one of America’s most potent weapons. We should let it do its slow work. 

Just don't attempt to wear a kimono

Btw, there are the beginnings of a backlash to our culture since it contains flattening nations and the underlying principle of usury. That's one reason the war is being carried to Muslim societies; they have a simple flat fee for loans, an alternate model that is threatening to western banking in$titutions.

American interventions aim to unite foreign peoples behind our vision for their country. Often they have the opposite effect.

See: The Wall Says It All

The coalition that deposed the Shah of Iran in 1979 included groups that hated each other, but shared a burning desire to end United States control of their country. Some Afghans support the Taliban not because they favor its program, but because the Taliban is from Afghanistan and they see the other side as a tool of the United States. In Iraq, former officers of Saddam Hussein’s ultra-secular army have joined with religious fundamentalists to fight the American-backed government.

Don't forget Libya! (Sort of explains why Assad is still popular, too). 

Btw, some beg to differ.

People in countries that the United States invades, occupies, or dominates may flock to our side for a while.

Like they did the Germans and Japanese. 

In the end, though, many come to see us above all as foreigners — because that is what we are. It is folly to assume that the United States, or any outside power, can use military power to win “hearts and minds” in a faraway land.

That is such a yesterday phrase. This war criminal government that he collectivizes as us all lost that war long, long ago.

For centuries this didn’t matter. Instead of trying to win the friendship of local people, big powers simply crushed them.

Nothing has changed. In fact, it is worse now in every way (refugees, destructive power of weaponry, environmental destruction) save for the death tolls that are being added to each day.

Only when that went out of fashion did we invent the fantasy that an invading army can win hearts and minds. Generations of wise Americans have sought to purge it from the American soul. Among the first was William Graham Sumner, the renowned Yale professor who invented the term “ethnocentrism.”

“We assume that what we like and practice, and what we think better, must come as a welcome blessing to Spanish-Americans and Filipinos,” Sumner warned more than a century ago as the United States prepared to take its first overseas territories. “This is grossly and obviously untrue. They hate our ways. They are hostile to our ideas. Our religion, language, institutions, and manners offend them. They like their own ways, and if we appear amongst them as rulers, there will be social discord.”

This is as true today as it was then. Yet the illusion that people around the world are eagerly awaiting our guidance is deeply rooted in the American psyche. In the wake of the Cold War, some went so far as to claim that all nations were finally concluding our way of life is best for everyone. It isn’t. Nations and peoples want to find their own way, not follow formulas from the other side of the world. We win friends by letting them do so.


That article opened my eyes wide this morning.