Divest This! has been writing a series of responses to the sessions scheduled at the upcoming BDS conference to be held at the University of Pennsylvania in a few weeks. Today's post, PennBDS – Packaging BDS, deals specifically with how BDS is marketed as a progressive cause.
virtually the entire BDS vocabulary is designed to reach a very specific section of the political marketplace: progressive audiences. In fact, the reason why anyone choosing to defend Israel and counter these accusations (including this blog) is frequently condemned as “right wing” is because the BDSers want to claim full ownership of the left end of the political spectrum.Naturally, Divest This! goes on to point out that all the progressive targets of BDS, such as universities, unions, food coops, etc. have repeatedly rejected BDS.
Beyond just trying to gain adherents to their cause among progressive individuals and organizations, the boycotters make it very clear that their agenda item is not just one among many but is the single defining issue for left-leaning audiences with anyone who disagrees cast out as a member of the “racist right.”
I always thought that supporting the notion of a "social safety-net" was the central tenet of progressivism. So I find it interesting that the faux-progressive, anti-Israel bloggers are having a love-affair with Ron Paul because of his non-interventionist positions - in particular his view on Israel. This gives a new meaning to "Israel firster." "We will throw away any progressive value we hold because we put our hatred of Israel first."
The BDS movement is about denying to the Jewish people the right of self-determination, the right to a sovereign nation. It is about trying to slander Israel as uniquely evil and worthy of elimination. It is about denying the history of the Jewish people and their connection to the Land of Israel. It is about supporting demands that if put into effect will result in the physical endangering of 5.5 million Jews. It is about ignoring the responsiblities and obligations of the Arab countries to the refugees that were created by their decisions to engage in war. It is about ignoring the human rights violations of those countries. This is not progressive. It is racist. It is anti-Semitic.