Kauft nicht bei Juden – “Don’t buy from Jews” – is back. The call to boycott Jewish commerce is Europe’s oldest political appeal. Once again, as the tsunami of hate against Israel rolls out from the Right and the Left, from Islamist ideologues to Europe’s cultural elites, the demand is to punish the Jews. That the actions of the Israeli government are open to criticism is a fact. But what are the real arguments?
Firstly, that Israel is wrong to defy international law as an occupying force on the West Bank. But what about Turkey? It has 35,000 soldiers occupying the territory of a sovereign republic – Cyprus. Ankara has sent hundreds of thousands of settlers to colonize the ancient Greekowned lands of northern Cyprus. Turkey has been told again and again by the UN to withdraw its troops. Instead, it now also stands accused of destroying the ancient Christian churches of northern Cyprus.
Does anyone call for a boycott of Turkey, or urge companies to divest from it? No. Only the Jews are targeted.
Or take India; 500,000 Indian soldiers occupy Kashmir. According to Amnesty International, 70,000 Muslims have been killed over the past 20 years by these soldiers and security forces – a number that far exceeds the Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in the same period. But the Islamic ideologues focus on Jews, not Indians.
May we talk of the western Sahara and Morocco, or Algeria’s closure of the border there, making life far worse than that of Palestinians in Ramallah or Hebron? No, better not.
Voltaire – anti-Semite that he was – should be alive today to mock the hypocrisy of the new high priests calling anathema on the heads of Jews in Israel.
You can read the whole thing here.
And this, belatedly, was my own small contribution to last week's 'Buy Israeli Goods' day, organised by Stand With Us International: