Photo Credit: U.S. State Department
Peter Beinart speaking at the U.S. State Department

In the wake of worldwide pressure, Israel is sending a clear message to the world, that the day of the Jewish state bowing down is over. The country realizes and recognizes its most important function is to remain a Jewish State and will do all it can to ensure the country remains safe.

In the UK, there are hate laws whereby enemies of the country are denied entrée to the nation. The United States has a myriad of laws and systems to ensure that those opposed to America do not enter our boundaries. In any democracy, someone seeking to harm a country is not permitted to enter.

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This week in Israel, a group of Members of Knesset, from across the political spectrum – including those in opposition – presented a bill whereby boycotters of Israel will not be permitted entrée’ to the country. MK Yinon Magal (Bayit Yehudi) presented a bill which was co-sponsored by Zionist Union, Yesh Atid, Kulanu, United Torah Judaism, Shas and the Likud which stated “anyone who is not a citizen or permanent resident of Israel will not be allowed to enter Israel if he or she, or a company or organization he or she represents, calls to boycott Israel.”

According to the 2011 Anti-Boycott Bill which passed Israel’s Supreme Court, a boycott is “Deliberate avoidance of economic, social or academic ties or ties to a person or other body just because of his connection to the State of Israel, its institutions or regions under its control, in order to harm it economically, social or academically.” The words “regions under its control” is specifically mentioned, as it denotes and includes those who specifically call to boycott the West Bank.

As the bill noted, “The absurd situation in which a person can be active in boycotting Israel and harming it abroad and then come to Israel and be accepted with open arms must be stopped. A country that wants to live cannot allow such a reality.”

This policy is a continuation of one whereby Prime Minister Netanyahu recently said, “The boycott generators do not see the settlements in Judea and Samaria but the settlements in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Beersheba, Haifa, and of course, Jerusalem, as the focus of the conflict.”

Netanyahu noted “We must not cave into the pressure, [we must] expose the lies and attack the attackers. We shall unite forces in Israel and abroad, expose our enemy’s lies, and fight for the Israeli citizen’s right to live their lives peacefully and safely.” Isaac Herzog, the leader of the Labor Party added “For years, I’ve devoted efforts in the fight against the boycott movement. We will fight to protect Israel’s good name. This is a diplomatic intifada being waged by the haters of Israel.” Centrist Yair Lapid, said that the boycott “… is not about policies, or about the settlements, or about the peace process; this is classic anti-Semitism in a modern disguise.”

A few months ago, Israel’s High Court of Justice ruled that Israel’s Finance Minister can “impose fines and withhold funding from Israeli NGOs calling for boycotts of businesses in all or parts of Israel and the power to file lawsuits against those NGOs.” New Israel Fund (NIF) sponsored organizations, including Gush Shalom, Adalah – the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) challenged that ruling in court – and were opposed.

Justice Hanan Meltzer described boycotts as “political terrorism,” clarifying that the State of Israel has a right to defend itself from them.

There are those in the Jewish community that think they can “thread the needle” by being both “pro-Israel” and “pro-boycott” as long as the boycott is only of items from Judea, Samaria and Eastern Jerusalem. There are few things that unite the political left and right in Israel today, however standing up against the Israel boycott is clearly one of them.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. I'm glad to see some concrete steps being taken to deal with the BDS supporters and the rock throwing terrorists attempting to kill Jews at every opportunity they can. Truth be told, if Israel gave away all it's land for peace and moved to a small island off the coast, Palestinians would want that too.

  2. In general, I really appreciate how this Pro-Israel publication, explains all the issues clearly, showing all sides of each issue, I wish more U.S. media outlets would follow this example. Yes, anyone who leads a boycott of Israel should be banned from Israel. I am proud NIM INTERNATIONAL Political Lobby has supported ISRAEL since the organization's foundation since 1989. http://www.nimcrown.com

  3. Please, G-d, let this bill pass. Beinart is possibly the most dishonest writer on the conflict. His book, "The Crisis of Zionism," denies that the Arabs rejected Israel in 1967, makes the ludicrous claim that Palestinians in the West Bank don't have enough water. He takes two quotes from Hamas leaders, in the entire history of Hamas, which show a mere incling of recognition of Israel and argues Hamas has reformed. He literally, literally, takes a quote by Shlomo Ben Ami and cuts it in half, and misquotes him. The quote was about rejecting camp David. Beinart quotes only this part, Ben-Ami says, "if I were a Palestinian I would have rejected Camp David," Yet, the full quote is, "If I were a Palestinian I would have rejected Camp David, but Taba!" Which meant Ben-Ami blamed them for rejecting Taba. But, it doesn't matter, because Ben-Ami has another quote where he says the opposite, and blames Arafat for rejecting Camp David. Which means, Ben-Ami gave self-canceling statements, and Beinart chose half of the quote he wanted, and tore it out of context and quoted it falsely. Also, Beinart constantly, constantly says, that Palestinians have been denied the right to vote for 50 years. Which makes him a compulsive liar. The Palestinians have held several elections. Beinart is an immoral, dishonest, and corrupt person. He should be banned from America also. He can live in Iran or Gaza. I don't even see how his book was published it has so many factual errors.

  4. Beinart is the issue and the subject of the discussion here. He is obviously entitled to his opinion, but I always believe that in addition, one has to look at the person, his make up, psychology, ambition and what drives him. Therein lies the rub. Beinart is entitle to make a success of his chosen career, but not at the expense of his people. I suspect he hit on the age old formula that to side with the Jews/Israel's enemies is a sure, quick and easy way to make a name for yourself. I have heard Beinart talk in Cape Town and he was so obvious.

    We Jews most often are our own worst enemies. We limit ourselves in how we respond and can respond and leave the way open for our detractors and those who wishus harm or abuse us. Good idea to limit these people. Didn't Israel do so with certain Jewish memebers of the Mafia? So it should be with those of our religion who do and wish us harm.

  5. Kudos for johansson, she has shown some integrity. As for Beinart, he needs a right message, and this bill would be the right one. Action leads to reaction, and this is the right one for those who think the world would be a better place if only Jews were punished. Any time in history, for whatever reason. Saudis fro UNHRC would applaud.
    However the real grounds for punishment is antisemitism, a racist bigotry, disguised as the fight for human rights.

    Kudo

    Thank you, Ms Johansson.

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