The H.R.6940 bill, a.k.a. “Israel Anti-Boycott Act,” that was submitted on March 3 for the approval of the 117th Congress is intended “to impose additional prohibitions relating to foreign boycotts under the Export Control Reform Act of 2018, and for other purposes.”
On Wednesday, I received an email from Hadar Susskind, President and CEO of Americans for Peace Now (see him in the picture with Ilhan Omar and Keith Ellison – he captioned it, so help me: “With old friends and new. It’s amazing what can happen when we actually get to know each other and work together rather than just believing the worst of what other people say”) urging me to ask my Member of Congress to oppose this effort “to conflate Israel with the occupied territories and to penalize protected speech.”
According to the bill, “due to the increased anti-Israel economic activity in international governmental organizations, it is necessary to update Federal authorities to combat anti-Israel boycotts and other discriminatory activity in such fora, including the United Nations Human Rights Council,” and combat “actions to boycott, divest from, or sanction Israel represent a concerted effort to extract concessions from Israel outside of direct negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians.”
The bill also states that “the United States-Israel Strategic Partnership Act of 2014 should be fully implemented through enhanced, governmentwide, coordinated United States-Israel scientific and technological cooperation in civilian areas, such as with respect to energy, water, agriculture, alternative fuel technology, civilian space technology, and security in order to counter the effects of actions to boycott, divest from, or sanction Israel.”
There’s a lot more, and all of it is as pro-Israel as the US Congress can get. It’s also mostly Republican, so who knows if this House will pass it. There’s one more reason to vote Republican come November.
According to the president of Americans for Peace Now, “the anti-boycott laws pushed by right-wing Jewish and evangelical organizations have resulted in a multi-state patchwork of anti-free speech laws that intentionally erase the (green) line between Israel and the occupied territories. While we continue to fight back in the states against these laws, it is vital that we work to prevent similar laws from being enacted at a federal level.”
Stuck in 1994? You bet. Ignoring the fact that easily 70% of Israeli Jews are opposed to the two-state solution some of them supported before buses started flying and rivers of blood were spilled in 1995? Goes without saying. It’s safe to say that by now, close to 30 years after that traumatic, anti-Zionist experiment, Americans for Peace Now is nothing more than a branch of the PLO, if not Hamas.
Here’s how Hadar Susskind views H.R.6940:
“If enacted, this legislation will be used as a cudgel to punish Americans, in violation of our First Amendment rights. It intentionally erases the distinction between Israel and the occupied territories, creating a situation where those who attempt to differentiate between Israeli goods and those made in the settlements, such as the United Nations Human Rights Council’s database of companies doing business in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights in March 2016, will be in violation of this law.
“The Israel Anti-Boycott Act not only undermines the distinction between Israel and the Palestinian territories, it also undermines the bedrock democratic principles that make up the foundation of our constitution. For the future of our democracy, it is vital that Congress not succeed in legislating against political speech. For a future two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it is necessary that the distinction between sovereign Israel and the settlements be maintained.”
Hadar Susskind reminds me of the members of the US Communist Party who remained loyal to the cause even after Russia and all of Eastern Europe had dropped it like a sack of garbage – with one distinction: American Communists did not try to push communism on the people of the former Soviet Union. Americans for Peace Now continue to fight wherever and whenever they can to impose their disastrous ideology on millions of foreigners thousands of miles away.