I am sorry to say that the “boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS)” movement against the state of Israel is once again picking up steam in the United States. The Anti-Defamation League has published a good overview of recent events as well as a response to the BDS campaign which explains far better than I could why the movement is misguided.
What I will say is that if you look closely enough at the leadership of most of the organizations participating in this movement, you will find anti-Semites and people whose ultimate goal is not to end the Israeli “occupation” of “Palestine,” but rather to end the existence of the state of Israel. The participants who are truly supporting this movement out of a desire to uphold human rights are, by and large, being misled and manipulated by those who wish to destroy the Jewish state.
The BDS movement has chosen June 2009 as the time to aggressively organize boycotts against stores that sell products imported from Israel. Trader Joe’s, in particular, has been targeted. If you oppose the BDS movement as I do, and if you live in an area with Trader Joe’s supermarkets, then now would be a great time to shop at Trader Joe’s. While you’re there, ask to speak to the store manager, and thank him or her for carrying Israeli products and not giving in to pressure from anti-Semites. You can also contact them on-line.
Israel is the only democratic country in the Middle East and the only one in which ethnic and religious minorities are given full civil rights. These attacks against Israel are simply unconscionable, and we must stand up to them.