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Challenging Israel’s identity as a nominally Jewish state — a form of delegitimization – seems to be an acceptable way of denying Israel’s right to exist. Objecting to the right of Jews to live in areas acquired in 1967, likewise, ignores Israel’s legal and historical claims, the proven consequences of withdrawal, and the dangers posed by creating another Arab Palestinian state.
Paradoxically, a “two-state” plan, instead of reducing resistance to Israel, increases it. The prospect of a Palestinian state and sovereignty only raises expectations that it will replace Israeli sovereignty, and bring Israel’s downfall.
By arguing against what they claim are Israel’s “racist policies,” its “illegal occupation of Arab lands,” its “colonialism,” anti-Israel groups claim the moral high-ground.
Decrying “the occupation as a moral disaster” for Israel, therefore, identifies Jews as “occupiers,” immoral, backed by a state-sponsored immorality, a legal and historical fraud that sharpens the sword of delegitimization and justifies BDS campaigns.
When the Gaza Strip is considered “a vast prison,” for example, then attacking those who made that prison is justified.
If a Jewish, democratic state is inherently discriminatory and “racist,” those who oppose it can be honored as “freedom fighters.” If Israel “steals Arab lands,” those who struggle to regain what is rightfully theirs are reasonable and justified. If Israeli settlements are “illegal,” that crime should be punished. This ugly representation of Israel is an intentional, one-dimensional portrait of evil.
The goal of BDS campaigns is not only to remove Jewish/Israeli presence from Judea and Samaria, Golan and eastern Jerusalem, but total Israeli surrender. Moreover, anti-Israel BDS campaigns can be used on many issues simultaneously, ad infinitum.
This explains the misconception that Palestinian leaders “never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity [for peace].” It’s not a mistake; it’s policy — never recognize Israel’s right to exist; never negotiate the refugee issue; never compromise on Jerusalem. The problem, therefore, is not territorial, but existential.
Ironically, BDS campaigns and unilateral Palestinian moves towards UN recognition and statehood sweep away illusions and clarify the real issues: secure and recognized borders, and ending the conflict.
The convergence of BDS hate-campaigns, delegitimization efforts, anti-settlement activities, anti-Semitism and a virulently anti-Israel media are not only dangerous to Israel; they are shameful examples of bigotry and intolerance.
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