Media Watch

Michelle Goldberg's Slight of Hand on BDS

The following letter was submitted to The New York Times in response to "Anti-Zionism is not Anti-Semitism" (Dec. 7)

Letters to the Editor
The New York Times

To the Editor:

It is Michelle Goldberg, not those who assert that the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement is anti-Semitic, who engages in sleight of hand ("Anti-Zionism is not Anti-Semitism," Dec. 7). 

The movement in its conception and origins rejects the legitimacy of the Jewish state. Omar Bargouti, the founder of BDS, refers to the state of Israel as a racist, colonialist state. Its goal is to make Israel disappear, not to make Israel better.

Goldberg tries to prettify this ugly movement by saying that it is not anti-Semitic to reject Israel's "ethno-Nationalist state." This is the old saw for denying Israel's right to exist and justification for the 70 year siege against Israel by the Arab world.

Israel is the only Jewish state in the world created on the land that was the connection for the Jewish people for three thousand years. At the same time, it is a democracy (the only real one in the Middle East) with rights for its minority populations.

And it is necessary to reach a two-state solution to protect Israel as Jewish and democratic and to realize rights of the Palestinians as well.

Not everyone who supports BDS is anti-Semitic and distinctions should be made. Unfortunately, Ms. Goldberg, intentionally or not, provides fodder to those worst instincts that lie behind BDS and its aim to delegitimize the Jewish state.


The Anti-Defamation League