Dozens of Jewish Groups Back BDS Movement, Slam False ‘Antisemitism’ Claims

(MEMO— Dozens of Jewish groups worldwide issued “an unprecedented joint statement on Tuesday backing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and saying that criticism of Israel’s actions does not equate to antisemitism”, reported The New Arab.

The initiative was led by US-based Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and the signatories include 36 Jewish groups from 15 countries, including Britain, South Africa, Germany and Brazil.

“As social justice organizations from around the world, we write this letter with growing alarm regarding the targeting of organizations that support Palestinian rights in general and the nonviolent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, in particular”, the statement begins.

“These attacks too often take the form of cynical and false accusations of antisemitism that dangerously conflate anti-Jewish racism with opposition to Israel’s policies and system of occupation and apartheid”.

The statement highlights in particular the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism, which, it says, “is worded in such a way as to be easily adopted or considered by western governments to intentionally equate legitimate criticisms of Israel and advocacy for Palestinian rights with antisemitism, as a means to suppress the former”.

“This conflation undermines both the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality and the global struggle against antisemitism. It also serves to shield Israel from being held accountable to universal standards of human rights and international law”, the statement continues.

The signatories “urge our governments, municipalities, universities and other institutions to reject the IHRA definition and instead take effective measures to defeat white supremacist nationalist hate and violence and to end complicity in Israel’s human rights violations”.

Notably, some of the groups who signed the statement “support BDS in full, others in part, and others have no formal position on BDS”, but “all affirm the current call for BDS as a set of tools and tactics that should not be defined as antisemitic”.

Leah Levane, from the UK’s Antisemitism Consortium, said: “There is no room for hate speech, but equally there must be no suppression of legitimate political protest, nor chilling of critical discussion, as is happening to pro-Palestinian activists in the UK and elsewhere”.

Creative Commons / Middle East Monitor / Report a typo

This article was chosen for republication based on the interest of our readers. Anti-Media republishes stories from a number of other independent news sources. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect Anti-Media editorial policy.

Since you’re here…

…We have a small favor to ask. Fewer and fewer people are seeing Anti-Media articles as social media sites crack down on us, and advertising revenues across the board are quickly declining. However, unlike many news organizations, we haven’t put up a paywall because we value open and accessible journalism over profit — but at this point, we’re barely even breaking even. Hopefully, you can see why we need to ask for your help. Anti-Media’s independent journalism and analysis takes substantial time, resources, and effort to produce, but we do it because we believe in our message and hope you do, too.

If everyone who reads our reporting and finds value in it helps fund it, our future can be much more secure. For as little as $1 and a minute of your time, you can support Anti-Media. Thank you. Click here to support us