Click for full articleGerald Steinberg 2 (2).


The political warfare against Israel known as the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement has been gradually losing ground. In the economic sphere, these campaigns never amounted to much, and Israeli firms are continuing to expand sales and partnerships worldwide. “BDS lite,” in the form of European labelling for goods produced beyond the pre-1967 “green line” (including the Golan) has had no measurable impact. Culturally, the artists’ boycott has had a terrible year (or rather, Israelis had a good concert season), as performers from around the world have come this summer.

However, there are other battlegrounds where BDS continues to advance, including a major push to demonize the Jewish National Fund and to increase pressure in the academic realm and among mainline Protestant churches.

More dangerous are the campaigns seeking to revoke the JNF’s charitable status in Canada, Britain and the United States and thus cripple its activities on behalf of Israel and Zionism. Led by marginal groups such as the Green party, as in the wider BDS campaign, they exploit the combination of fundamental ignorance and bias against Israel, and use a few fringe Jews as fig leaves to claim legitimacy.

…the fight against BDS in its various forms remains crucial for Israel and the Jewish People. Overstating the threat does not help, but neither does the effort to diminish the impacts or pretend that the war is over.