The widespread adoption of laws by states — most recently Kentucky — prohibiting their governments from doing business with entities that boycott Israel, is a recognition that these boycotts are “a form of economic warfare, steeped in hate and discrimination, aimed at the lone Jewish state in the world,” a Senior Policy Analyst for The Israel Project wrote Monday in an op-ed for The Algemeiner.
Jacob Millner, who also serves as TIP’s Midwest Regional Director, noted that since Illinois became the first state to pass a law opposing discriminatory boycotts of Israel in May 2015, 25 other states have adopted similar legislation, making laws targeting the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, “one of the most successful efforts in recent legislative memory.”
“In a nation seemingly divided on everything, legislatures and governors from New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota, all the way to Colorado, Arizona, Texas, Florida, and many others have forcefully identified BDS as a form of hate,” Millner wrote. “Kentucky is the latest addition to states who oppose these boycotts. And these states should be applauded. Americans must not condone taxpayer dollars going to subsidize discrimination.”
Millner quoted statements by Gov. Matthew Bevin (R – Kan.), Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D – N.Y.), and Gov. Greg Abbott (R – Texas), explaining that the laws adopted by their states were meant to fight BDS. He observed that the governors, who represent the bipartisan consensus on this issue, “all understand that boycotting Israel for political purposes is unfair and creates a double standard, which the US State Department has deemed antisemitism.”
Calling the BDS campaign generally, or boycotts that single out Israel, anti-Semitic is appropriate, Millner explained, because “the singling out of the lone Jewish state for divestment and sanctions under the guise of ‘opposing occupation,'” while raising no objections to the “hundreds of other territorial disputes,” is a double standard that “should not and cannot be tolerated.”
The legal effort of states to fight discriminatory boycotts of Israel has been successful, according to Millner, because “American state legislators and governors, Democrats and Republicans alike, as well as our friends in Europe, all reject the ideology of hate and discrimination that lies at the heart of the BDS movement, which is aimed at the destruction of Israel.”
[Photo: Bevin-Hampton Administration / YouTube ]