Photo Credit: El Al
Peace is coming

Israel’s peace treaty with the United Arab Emirates remains on center stage in the news and is still being analyzed from a variety of angles.

One of those angles is the question of what peace with the UAE, and potentially with other Arab states, could have on the BDS movement.
For example, Emily Schrader — a research fellow at the Tel Aviv Institute — writes that With the UAE deal, the BDS movement is over. Considering the official BDS reaction to the announcement of the peace treaty, the threat to the movement is real.
She notes the self-righteous indignation on their official webpage, not only accusing the UAE of being both a ‘dictatorship’ and a ‘police state,” but also of allowing Israel to use the agreement ‘to support its military interventions and war against democracy in the region’
Schrader notes:

Funny how the BDS movement has no problem with oppressive and authoritarian regimes which murder their own dissidents, minorities, women and others when they are anti-Israel. In fact, in condemning peace with the UAE, the BDS movement publicly aligned itself with some of the world’s biggest violators of human rights today: Iran and Turkey, which also forcefully condemned peace.

While the Associated Press quotes Hanan Ashrawi singing the praises of BDS —

While #BDS is proving to be an effective tool of peaceful resistance & responsible, ethical investment & consumer responsibility to hold Israel to account, this happens! [emphasis added]

— this peaceful strategy includes the Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine as part of the global leadership of the BDS operation.
Tablet Magazine has an article on  the Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine, also known as PNIF
Among PNIF’s members are five different groups designated by the US as terrorist organizations, including Hamas, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the Popular Front – General Command (PFLP-GC), the Palestine Liberation Front, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).
So much for tools of peaceful resistance.

But as Schrader points out, the Arab world in general — and the UAE agreement in particular — are a rejection not only of the Palestinian Arab refusal to sit down with Israel, it is also a rejection of the BDS strategy as well.

One would expect the UAE to be even more opposed to the BDS Movement given its radical ties to terrorism which contribute to chaos in the region and has connections with Iran.
But will that matter?
BDS has been criticized before for its hypocrisy — that those who preach boycott are found to be using Israeli products.
The negative effect of anti-Israel boycotts on Palestinian Arab workers is a common point as well.
In fact, as David Suissa — president of Tribe Media/Jewish Journal — points out, boycotts of Israel will now start affecting Arab states as well:

How can they continue to undermine Israel if Arab countries announce that it’s good for the health of their societies to do business with the Zionist state?

A response to these criticisms has been that BDS is not a ‘moral principle.’
It is a tactic.
BDS is no more a moral stand than If Not Now saying Kaddish for Palestinian terrorists is an attempt to save their souls.
These groups thrive on the publicity generated by the controversy and chaos they can cause.
Will that change because one Arab state enthusiastically signs a peace deal with Israel?
Will it make a difference if more Arab states sign-on?
The BDS movement and its allies will experiment with different tactics and voices to address this peace treaty. They may rethink the veiled attempt to encourage armed rebellion in the UAE.
Or maybe not.
Saudi Arabia’s position as a US ally in the Middle East was severely tarnished by the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.
It remains to be seen what the BDS Movement and its allies will come up with.

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Bennett Ruda has been blogging at since 2003. He also contributes to the Elder of Ziyon website. Bennet lives in Elizabeth, New Jersey, with his wife and two children