[Gerald] Steinberg, the founder of NGO Monitor, an organization that tracks human rights-related non-governmental groups, said that “people with an anti-Israel orientation don’t wait for organizations to issue boycotts.”
Almost since the inception of the BDS movement a dozen years ago, and especially since the British academic boycott movement began flexing its muscles in 2002, individual academics in Europe and elsewhere have tried to impose a “soft” or “silent” boycott of Israeli academics, especially those in the natural sciences, Steinberg said.
“It’s harder for Israelis who are not of the ‘proper’ political persuasion to get published in many journals, and there are many examples of Israelis not invited to conferences, or in some cases are uninvited,” Steinberg said. “There’s a sinister process going on and I don’t think the ASA will change that, one way or the other.”
Steinberg would like to see Israeli academics do much more to fight these attempts to marginalize Israel.
“The Israeli academic community has been far too silent and ostrich-like to expect political warfare to disappear,” he said. If it were up to Steinberg, the Israeli government would confront European governments, “and especially the EU,” over the “20 million Euros” these governments give to organizations “that use a disproportionate amount of that money to promote BDS.
“The government should tell these governments that if their funding promotes BDS, that takes Europe out of the peace process,” Steinberg asserted.