Search the Lounge

Categories

« Antebellum Cemetery Trivia | Main | Eric Mitnick Appointed Interim Dean at U.Mass. Law »

June 16, 2016

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

anymouse

He holds the Bruce W. Wayne Chair in International Law at Hebrew. Is that the Bruce Wayne of Batman fame?

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

Why don't you call Alfred and ask.

Guest

Batman was a mossad agent, just ask the conspiracy wackos who increasingly own the space at the wsj and other media. Oh yes, obama, all the CIA chiefs, Bush and Clinton are also secret mossad agents.
On a more serious note, this certainly shows BDS is a total garbage and bankrupt movement.

twbb

Putting aside any larger arguments about the wisdom or ethics of BDS, your argument in this specific instance is fundamentally flawed, Steven, at least to the extent I understand it. Honestly, some of the things you say here are a little difficult to decipher.

In any event:

1. The ASA boycott is not of individuals; it wouldn't "ban" Dean Karayanni's participation in an ASA event or by a participating ASA member or member institution, it would simply not allow a formal collaboration with him in his capacity as dean. I'm not quite sure what kind of "ban" you are even thinking of.

2. I also am not sure what you mean by the listed projects being "prohibited." And I don't mean that as some sort of rhetorical tactic; it honestly does not make sense as written. The ASA's boycott does no, nor could it, "prohibit[]" the existence of projects or municipalities. I don't know what prohibiting a community would even entail.

3. If you mean that under the ASA boycott the ASA would not enter into a collaboration with these communities (and why would an academic association dedicated to studies of the United States would enter a collaboration with a village in Israel?) that is also wrong under the plain text of the boycott resolution. It is aimed purely at academic institutions.

4. But your overall point seems to be that the boycott will hurt an Israeli Arab, which somehow thwarts its supporter's intentions, I think that is a form of begging the question. Based on your multiple posts regarding this topic, you seem to be assuming the boycott is an anti-semitic attempt to hurt or punish Israeli Jews, rather than an attempt to force policy change in a specific government, and that is thus not furthering its insidious goal here. Whether you agree with their goals or tactics, supporters of the boycott understand that blameless individuals might be harmed in the short-term, both Jewish, Muslim, and other, who are affiliated with Israeli government institutions. The principle behind such boycotts is to force change at the governmental level. It is not a way to hurt individual people.

twbb

By the way, I am not defending BDS generally; I have mixed views on the movement. I do, however, think that any debate on it should address what it says. Honestly, I find that when it comes to criticisms and defenses of the Israeli government, both sides tend to go to unsubstantiated hyperbole way too quickly.

to twbb

The problem with BDS is that it is selective and discriminatory as it picks on Isreal for "policy change". There are many nations that inter alia - allow honor killings, torture prisoners, execute political dissidents, prevent females from driving, and engage in other conduct that clearly is at odds with Western values. Yet none of these nations are selected for "treatment" only Israel. That is the problem many of us have of the BDS movement let alone the response that Isreal is not guilty of the "crimes" the BDSers accuse it of.

twbb

BDS is a single-issue advocacy group. Criticizing it for not taking on other issues makes little sense.

While the claim that Israel's critics tend to give a pass to other countries who also do immoral things is widespread -- I've seen it pop on multiple TFL stories -- it is also a falsehood. Those major globally-focused human rights organizations that have criticized Israel have also without exception criticized other countries for every single thing you name. Without exception.

Steve L.

Anon (whichever Anon you are): I deleted your post because it made a personal accusation against twbb. Your point about the UN resolutions against Israel was well taken, and you may repost it if you wish -- but keep personalities out of it.

anon

My point was this: "major globally-focused human rights organizations that have criticized Israel have also without exception criticized other countries for every single thing you name. Without exception."

Like, for example, the UN? Proportionality is the byword of the opponents of Israel. Can you truly see proportionality in the UN?

My second point was that we have experience with banning Jews from universities. This sort of "elimination" is not unfamiliar and has an odious nature. The point of the post above is, as I understand, to test the "anti Israel" v. "anti Jew" nature of the BDS movement (we are constantly told it is the former and not the latter).

My third point was that we cannot excuse odious and unwarranted discrimination because the organization that promotes it is devoted to that "single issue."

My fourth point was that far more than condemning the countries that surround Israel for violating the civil rights of their own citizens is warranted. It is equally important to recognize that many of these countries have, as a matter of government policy, ruthlessly attacked Israel and threatened its existence from the outset of its formation. The response of Israel to these long decades of attacks is scrutinized, but too often the provocation is ignored.

to the twbb poster

twbb you are way off base when you claim the BDSers also critique "other nations". That is total bull. Please provide links or proof if what I am saying is not correct. Moreover, there are no other nations which are being targeted for boycott - is Saudi Arabia - women cannot drive; Iran - kill the gays and torture dissidents, China - Falun Gong anyone? Russia - go to jail and get beaten to a pulp, Qatar - go to the police and file a rape complaint, oops woman is guilty for "extra marital sex". Come on, and BDS targets Israel for defending itself?

twbb

To anon: UN is not a "human rights organization"; it's an international organization dedicated to preserving world peace, a goal which, even if you do not agree with BDS, by its definition does not preclude BDS. The reason that boycotts have been increasingly used is because they, especially voluntary ones like BDS, are considered more ethical means of change than violence.

As for your comment "My second point was that we have experience with banning Jews from universities," two problems with that: first, you're undercutting your argument by posting it on a story which criticizes the potential effect of BDS on a non-Jewish academic. Second, you can't excuse the actions of a purportedly modern democracy by making vague references to past mistreatment of people who share the same religion. I would suggest if those who think Israel's current policies are moral and just find the only way they have to defend them is to reference bad acts committed by other countries or in the past, then maybe they should rethink what they are defending. A government does not get a blank check to do whatever it wants because its leaders share a religion with other people who have been mistreated elsewhere in time and space. The idea that any other country, let alone a modernized, supposedly democratic and secular one, would not be criticized for, say, allowing settlements in the occupied territories, defies belief.

And it also draws attention to the big problem Israel's defenders have; if this is driven just by anti-semitism, then why now? Why is public sentiment turning against Israel recently instead of throughout its history? Is the allegation that the world is more anti-semitic than it was 10 or 20 or 30 years ago?

"My third point was that we cannot excuse odious and unwarranted discrimination because the organization that promotes it is devoted to that "single issue.""

That doesn't make too much sense; single issue organizations are single issue organizations. The discrimination is in targeting one entity for malfeasance while ignoring other entities, but single issue organizations do that almost by definition. If your argument is, on the other hand, that criticizing Israel is by definition discrimination, well that's absurd.

As for your comment "The response of Israel to these long decades of attacks is scrutinized, but too often the provocation is ignored," Israel has had overwhelming defense support from the West, including direct military intervention (e.g., Suez Crisis) and massive financial support (e.g., United States). The suggestion that sentiment in the West has suddenly turned against Israel out of spontaneous anti-semitism, rather than a change in how Israel comports itself, is not credible. Sentiment in the United States, for example, is largely pro-Israel and anti-BDS; among the American public it is more often than not refusing to scrutinize Israel's actions in favor of an automatic Palestinians-as-terrorists narrative.

As for the next poster:
To provide specific examples of prominent BDS supporters (I don't want to be accused of cherry-picking obscure ones):

1. Code Pink, which was one of the organizations that submitted the 2014 BDS petition to the United Nations, has critiqued several other countries in the area for human rights violations:
http://www.codepink.org/saudiarabia
http://www.codepink.org/turkeys_renewed_war_on_the_kurds
http://www.codepink.org/stop_the_violence_in_yemen

2. Human Rights Watch, a prominent BDS supporter, has criticized most of the countries in the Middle East as well as China for exactly the things you mention:
https://www.hrw.org/middle-east/n-africa/syria
https://www.hrw.org/middle-east/n-africa/egypt
https://www.hrw.org/europe/central-asia/russia
https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2015/country-chapters/china-and-tibet

3. Do I even have to provide evidence that Black Lives Matter criticizes entities other than Israel?

As for individuals, if you can find a prominent BDS supporter who hasn't also criticized human rights violations in other countries, let's hear them. Many BDS supporters are out of the academic left, and it is wrong to the point of delusional to argue that the academic left is silent on human rights violations outside Israel and the occupied territories.

As I've pointed out, I'm not even a BDS supporter; presumably someone who is would be more knowledgeable on the issue and able to provide you with a lot more information.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

I am with the very first poster. I would rather just discuss Batman.

anon

twbb

Wow. Too much misdirection in the argument to rebut. I'll take on a few:

1. "To anon: UN is not a "human rights organization"" ...

Article 1, UN Charter:

"To achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion."

2. "ou're undercutting your argument by posting it on a story which criticizes the potential effect of BDS on a non-Jewish academic. Second, you can't excuse the actions of a purportedly modern democracy by making vague references to past mistreatment of people who share the same religion."

I noted the point that Lubet appeared to be making. ("The point of the post above is, as I understand, to test the "anti Israel" v. "anti Jew" nature of the BDS movement (we are constantly told it is the former and not the latter).") Second, we aren't discussing "excusing the actions" of Israel.

3. "And it also draws attention to the big problem Israel's defenders have; if this is driven just by anti-semitism, then why now? Why is public sentiment turning against Israel recently instead of throughout its history."

Geez. Where to begin? This is a sort of unfathomable statement. Start with 1948, twbb. And on. and on. and on.

4. "single issue organizations are single issue organizations. The discrimination is in targeting one entity for malfeasance while ignoring other entities."

And so? What is your point? Singular focus is somehow an excuse?

5. "The suggestion that sentiment in the West has suddenly turned against Israel out of spontaneous anti-semitism, rather than a change in how Israel comports itself, is not credible."

Again, unfathomable argument, as no one has said that "sentiment in the West has suddenly turned against Israel out of spontaneous anti-Semitism." This is a pure creation, so rebutting it doesn't really mean anything.

6. "As I've pointed out, I'm not even a BDS supporter; presumably someone who is would be more knowledgeable on the issue and able to provide you with a lot more information."

I think this statement speaks for itself.

to the twbb poster

to twbb
you have proven my point. I had pointed out that BDS selectively and discriminatorily targets Israel for boycott. You respond that various orgs like human rights watch condemn other nations as well. But...so what? Everyone knows that Saudi Arabia prevents women from driving and that dissidents in Russia and China are tortured and killed. And yes, in Qatar rape victims are the guilty ones of indulging in extra marital sex. Yet NONE of these nations academics are singled out for boycott. NONE of these nations speakers are met with throngs of protesters organized by the BDS movement. NONE of these nations products are subject to ban. And of course, the absurdity id more outrageous when in context, Israel does not engage in these activities. In Israel, there are muslim judges and muslim members of parliament. When was the last time a jew or christian or hindu was part of the government or judiciary in qatar, saudi arabia or kuwait? When was the last time peaceful political protests were banned in Israel? In Israel you can critique the govt try that in other nations you will get executed. Yet BDS targets Israel? Pure unadulterated jew hatred. Its cyclical I guess the world gets tired of it after a huge massacre (ww2) now the memories are fading so its time again for blame the jew game. Sickening. Well at least the jews now have Israel so they will be able to defend themselves. BDS...Hitler would be proud.

The comments to this entry are closed.

StatCounter

  • StatCounter
Blog powered by Typepad