Israeli, Zionist, and supporting BDS

No, you didn’t read that title wrong. The time really has come to stop fighting the BDS movement, and to whole-heartedly support it.

But you BDSers need to do it right, because let’s face it, guys. You really don’t get what boycotting a country is about.

It’s not just refusing to see certain movies, hear certain concerts or attend certain lectures by visiting professors. (Ironically, an inordinately high percentage of Israelis involved in the arts and academia tend to agree with your basic pro-Palestinian, pro-two-state solution ideals. But that’s none of my business).

Proper boycotting of Israel is much more than that.

It involves finding out everything that Israel produces, then making sure that you have nothing to do with it — in any way, shape or form.

It means not allowing yourself or your loved ones to benefit from any of the medical, scientific or technological breakthroughs that are being made by Israelis — in Israel, and to a lesser extent, abroad — on an almost daily basis.

You may think that you are “taking a stand” when you refuse to answer scholastic inquiries by school children, like Cambridge researcher Marsha Levine did recently to 13-year-old Shachar Rabinovitch.

But let’s be honest. That’s not boycotting Israel. That’s just bullying a child.

If you want the world to really see and understand your principles, then you can’t build a “Boycott Israel” website using the Israeli Wix platform, like the Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of Denver did not too long ago.

(Side note to the Denver SJP branch — you really do lose all credibility and make yourselves a laughing stock when you defend yourselves by saying that just because you want to boycott Israel, it doesn’t mean boycotting all Israeli products! Come on!! You are students at an institute of higher education, for crying out loud! Do you really not understand the meaning of the word “boycott”? Jeez!)

Seriously, BDSers — get to work. If you want Israelis to take your boycott seriously, you’ve got a lot to do.

Start by checking the internet and finding a list of what you would need to stop using in order to boycott Israel.

Of course, just conducting that search would likely involve using a number of Israeli technologies, but you can be forgiven your ignorance for now, as long as it brings you to a better understanding in the near future of how to boycott responsibly.

I would offer to help you figure out which sites, inventions, innovations, medicines, etc. to boycott, but I am Israeli, and accepting my help would threaten everything you stand for. God knows I hate a hypocrite!

So it’s on you, BDSers, to do this right. Boycott Israel in every way you can, if that’s what it takes for you to convince yourselves that we really are the source of all evil and unrest in the Middle East. I, for one, support your efforts, and hope that other Israelis and friends of Israel will join me in doing the same.

But keep it real. Drop the BS. Really boycott us — completely and totally.

I have no doubt that you will be more hurt by not using anything produced in Israel than Israel will be hurt by the lack of revenues generated by the handful of you that have the guts and the brains to do this properly.

But bring it on. I’d love to see it!

About the Author
Asher Zeiger grew up (well, sort of) in North Carolina and moved to Israel in 1988. He lives in Modi'in with his wife and two daughters, and works as freelance writer, editor and translator. In his spare time, he tries hard at not taking himself or life too seriously (successfully) and at unwrapping himself from around his daughters' little fingers (not so successfully).