Once again British university lecturers are being asked to boycott Israeli trachers at Israeli educational institutions and those who teach there. This time the boycott call is broader and the shame for such unconscionable behavior greater:
The largest university and college lecturers union in Britain is likely to decide shortly to recommend that its 67,000 members boycott Israeli lecturers and academic institutions that do not publicly declare their opposition to Israeli policy in the territories.
The boycott motion, which was drafted by the southeast region of the National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education (NATFHE), will be brought to a vote at its annual national conference, which will be held May 27—29. It comes about a year after the last boycott by British lecturers.
In April 2005, the British Association of University Teachers (AUT) decided to impose an academic boycott on Bar—Ilan and Haifa universities, but subsequently reversed the decision. The two lecturers organizations are slated to merge at the beginning of June.
Unlike the previous boycott, which targeted two specific institutions, the current motion relates to all lecturers and academic institutions in Israel. Now that the University of Haifa has threatened the AUT with a lawsuit, the NATFHE motion is more cautious: instead of recommending the lecturers union boycott Israeli institutions, it calls on the union to suggest its members carry out the boycott.
If our own institutions of higher learning weren't so blinkered themselves, I'd suggest they notify their British counterparts that any participating institution will be sibject to the same treatment here.
Clarice Feldman 5 09 06