Cutting through the bullshit.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Shop till you drop

Now elevated to the status of ‘the premier global Jewish advocacy organization’, on 1 December the American Jewish Committee unveiled its latest strategy in the campaign to defeat global anti-Semitism.

“Our collective response to the haters of Israel is to shop,” said AJC Executive Director David Harris, who led a large group to Ricky’s, a store in New York’s Union Square…“Chanukah, when we celebrate our freedom as Jews, is the perfect time to show our support for Israel by purchasing Israeli products,” said Harris.  “We need to speak out and act. Shopping for Israel is the right thing to do."

In an aside attempting to ridicule the BDS campaign, Harris quipped, 

By the way, I can't help but wonder if the anti-Israel boycotters, for consistency's sake, also ensure before using their computers and cell phones, or seeking life-saving medical care, that there are no Israeli products or innovations involved.

What doesn’t appear to have penetrated is that BDS is not just a moral gesture.  With the supine International Community powerless to redress the injustice of Israel’s ongoing occupation of the territories it seized by force in June 1967, Palestinian civil society groups have called on supporters to inflict economic and other kinds of pressure on Israel.  It doesn’t matter what wonderful inventions Israelis have come up with.  What matters is what kinds of actions we consider will have the greatest economic impact at the time and what kinds of forces we can mobilize in support of the campaign, along with other tactical issues. 

Reducing the campaign to a question of some imagined moral consistency evidences incomprehension of what it’s all about.  To be fair, I suspect that it is beyond Harris’s capacity to understand solidarity, at least outside the tribe.

Stick to what you’re good at, David, and shop till you drop.

1 comment: