Sunday, July 15, 2007

perspectives on the academic boycott

In a very intelligent post, Rabbi David Forman from the Rabbis for Human Rights argues that use of an academic boycott and terms such as 'apartheid' in the context of Israel/Palestine are not helpful.

However, with rare humility he also says

And yet, we know in our hearts of hearts that while such boycotts are not justified on the universal plain of comparisons, there are more than a few elements of truth in what these hypocrites claim.... Israel’s present situation is still not politically analogous to South Africa’s history of discrimination; and so, we confidently argue that “apartheid” is not an appropriate term to apply to what we are doing in the West Bank. But what term would one choose to define a privileged protectionism for a few thousand Jews in the West Bank over a separate and unequal existence for over two million Palestinians?

The fact that compared to other countries we are a paragon of moral virtue does not obviate another fact: We have shamed ourselves as a Jewish state..

And as Howard Jacobson in yesterday's Independent points out, opposing an academic boycott is not necessarily to imply support of the occupation.

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Blogger Karin said...

An interesting article, Joe, thanks for bringing it to my attention. Kx

5:51 AM  

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