Boycott the boycott

An academic obscenity is taking place in Britain. On April 28, the union bosses who claim to represent some 50,000 university professors in the UK, voted to boycott two universities in Israel. But they gave the  Israeli teachers a choice: They could escape the boycott if they denounced their own country.

In response, I emailed British friends and colleagues that I would not set foot on British soil until the boycott was rescinded. Two Canadian academics did likewise. A Swedish professor emailed me with his heartfelt outrage against to the union bosses. An online peition has collected thousands of protest signatures. An Oxford professor wrote that he felt ashamed of his country. Professor Emanuele Ottolenghi of NYU demanded to be added to the targets of the boycott.  The New York Academy of Sciences protested.

Why is the boycott so disgraceful? Real scholars known in their bones how deeply it violates academic values. Free speech, free communication, open—mindedness, an effort to understand other people's point of view, respect for the scientific achievements of a tiny democracy under siege, all are part of the story. This is nothing like the international campaign to shame South Africa into giving up apartheid. In fact, the universities involved have been in the forefront of promoting dialogue between Palestinians and Israelis. They give more diplomas to Muslim women than any Islamic university in the Middle East.

Rather, the academic boycott is a conscious effort to demonize and dehumanize an instinctively peaceful people who have been under vicious assault for decades. No one yearns for peace more than Israel. No one has given more land for peace ——— today Gaza, yesterday the entire Sinai peninsula. No one feels more agonized when innocent children are ruthlessly targeted for murder in order to drive the Jews into the sea, as we have seen happen time and time again in the last few years. In no other country does the Supreme Court routinely take legal petitions from the enemy, often deciding against its own government. No other country is under assault with more vicious propaganda every day (see MEMRI's collection of  cartoons). No other country, except America, has been so singled out by the European media for hatred.

A tiny group of fanatics ——— I call them Left Fascists ——— has managed to take control of the union of 50,000 academics in Britain . They did not bother to ask their members to vote, but simply sneaked through their boycott without giving opponents time to speak. In other words, they acted  just like the Stalinist fascists who took over labor unions in America, claiming to speak for longshorement and  screen actors and teachers. Yet the same fascists did nothing to protest the genocide of Christian and African animists that is going on at this very moment in the Sudan, about the Balkans genocide ten years ago, or Rwanda ——— not to mention mass extermination campaigns by the Left itself in the Ukraine, Russia, China, Cambodia.

Some newspapers have voiced outrage at the boycott. But they may be helpless. British people are fundamentally decent, and their parents would have been deeply shocked. Israel is under assault, just like London during the Blitz. It is taking casualties every day. Its enemy aims to kill and kill and conquer. The fact that Britain no longer understands the plight of tiny democracies under siege speaks volumes about the rapid degradation of British politics.

Race—baiting played a big role in the Labour Party strategy in last week's election.  The big effort was to keep Muslims voting for Labour. The party therefore resorted to the most cynical racial stereotypes to appeal to new Muslims immigrants, who are flooded with Nazi—style propaganda on a daily basis . But Labour was out—demagogued by George Galloway, the shameless suck—up to Saddam Hussein, who was paid off by Saddam's Oil For Food scam. Parliament now has a first—class racist demagogue in its ranks. In order to regain the Muslim vote, Labour is sure to try more race—baiting in the next election. It shows the direction of European politics, as more and more Muslim immigrants move in and take over.

This is indefensible. Decent men and women cannot stand by and see Europe fall back to its revolting past.  Sixty years ago, King Edward VII tried to negotate a treasonous peace with Hitler, against Churchill's outraged opposition.  We are seeing another betrayal of common decency in Europe, a treason of the intellectuals, just like the ones who sided with Stalin and the Nazis half a century ago.

What can Americans do? Europeans are hypersensitive to American public opinion.  We can sign petitions. We can inform ourselves, and pass the word to others. And for those of us who feel strongly enough, we can boycott the boycotters. Money talks, and taking away some tourist income will send a strong message.

In just three weeks, on May 26, a small group of rebels will force a reconsideration of the union boycott. They may win, and vindicate fundamental British decency. Or they may lose. If they cannot stop the boycott, I look forward to exploring the beauties of America and Israel on my future travels. Europe will look far too much like its slimy past.

An academic obscenity is taking place in Britain. On April 28, the union bosses who claim to represent some 50,000 university professors in the UK, voted to boycott two universities in Israel. But they gave the  Israeli teachers a choice: They could escape the boycott if they denounced their own country.

In response, I emailed British friends and colleagues that I would not set foot on British soil until the boycott was rescinded. Two Canadian academics did likewise. A Swedish professor emailed me with his heartfelt outrage against to the union bosses. An online peition has collected thousands of protest signatures. An Oxford professor wrote that he felt ashamed of his country. Professor Emanuele Ottolenghi of NYU demanded to be added to the targets of the boycott.  The New York Academy of Sciences protested.

Why is the boycott so disgraceful? Real scholars known in their bones how deeply it violates academic values. Free speech, free communication, open—mindedness, an effort to understand other people's point of view, respect for the scientific achievements of a tiny democracy under siege, all are part of the story. This is nothing like the international campaign to shame South Africa into giving up apartheid. In fact, the universities involved have been in the forefront of promoting dialogue between Palestinians and Israelis. They give more diplomas to Muslim women than any Islamic university in the Middle East.

Rather, the academic boycott is a conscious effort to demonize and dehumanize an instinctively peaceful people who have been under vicious assault for decades. No one yearns for peace more than Israel. No one has given more land for peace ——— today Gaza, yesterday the entire Sinai peninsula. No one feels more agonized when innocent children are ruthlessly targeted for murder in order to drive the Jews into the sea, as we have seen happen time and time again in the last few years. In no other country does the Supreme Court routinely take legal petitions from the enemy, often deciding against its own government. No other country is under assault with more vicious propaganda every day (see MEMRI's collection of  cartoons). No other country, except America, has been so singled out by the European media for hatred.

A tiny group of fanatics ——— I call them Left Fascists ——— has managed to take control of the union of 50,000 academics in Britain . They did not bother to ask their members to vote, but simply sneaked through their boycott without giving opponents time to speak. In other words, they acted  just like the Stalinist fascists who took over labor unions in America, claiming to speak for longshorement and  screen actors and teachers. Yet the same fascists did nothing to protest the genocide of Christian and African animists that is going on at this very moment in the Sudan, about the Balkans genocide ten years ago, or Rwanda ——— not to mention mass extermination campaigns by the Left itself in the Ukraine, Russia, China, Cambodia.

Some newspapers have voiced outrage at the boycott. But they may be helpless. British people are fundamentally decent, and their parents would have been deeply shocked. Israel is under assault, just like London during the Blitz. It is taking casualties every day. Its enemy aims to kill and kill and conquer. The fact that Britain no longer understands the plight of tiny democracies under siege speaks volumes about the rapid degradation of British politics.

Race—baiting played a big role in the Labour Party strategy in last week's election.  The big effort was to keep Muslims voting for Labour. The party therefore resorted to the most cynical racial stereotypes to appeal to new Muslims immigrants, who are flooded with Nazi—style propaganda on a daily basis . But Labour was out—demagogued by George Galloway, the shameless suck—up to Saddam Hussein, who was paid off by Saddam's Oil For Food scam. Parliament now has a first—class racist demagogue in its ranks. In order to regain the Muslim vote, Labour is sure to try more race—baiting in the next election. It shows the direction of European politics, as more and more Muslim immigrants move in and take over.

This is indefensible. Decent men and women cannot stand by and see Europe fall back to its revolting past.  Sixty years ago, King Edward VII tried to negotate a treasonous peace with Hitler, against Churchill's outraged opposition.  We are seeing another betrayal of common decency in Europe, a treason of the intellectuals, just like the ones who sided with Stalin and the Nazis half a century ago.

What can Americans do? Europeans are hypersensitive to American public opinion.  We can sign petitions. We can inform ourselves, and pass the word to others. And for those of us who feel strongly enough, we can boycott the boycotters. Money talks, and taking away some tourist income will send a strong message.

In just three weeks, on May 26, a small group of rebels will force a reconsideration of the union boycott. They may win, and vindicate fundamental British decency. Or they may lose. If they cannot stop the boycott, I look forward to exploring the beauties of America and Israel on my future travels. Europe will look far too much like its slimy past.