5 Ways ADL is Combatting BDS

August 11, 2016

1. On the Ground: Working on a Local Level

ADL is on the ground, actively working to combat and marginalize the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement and other efforts to delegitimize the State of Israel.  Each and every day, through our 27 offices across the United States and our partnerships around the world, we work – often behind the scenes – with key constituencies to fight divestment and boycott campaigns.  

2. Monitoring Anti-Israel Groups

ADL actively monitors the BDS campaign. Students for Justice in PalestineJewish Voice for PeaceAmerican Muslims for Palestine, are among the groups promoting, funding, training and implementing BDS action on campuses, boardrooms, municipalities, churches.  They are also behind campaigns demanding entertainers, retailers, academics and others boycott Israel.  ADL shares information on these groups with those being targeted, and provides assistance and support to counter these campaigns.  

3. Educating and Empowering

ADL educates and empowers students, campus administrators and campus law enforcement to deal with BDS and other anti-Israel activities, and enact best practices.  

    • We train Jewish students on how to recognize and respond to anti-Israelism, anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism. 
    • We prepare campus officials on best practices in dealing with anti-Israel actions on campus, and how to recognize when anti-Israel activism crosses into anti-Semitism. 
    • We take student leaders from across the country to Israel where they interact with Israeli Jews, Arabs and Palestinians, hear diverse perspectives and experience the everyday contradictions and realities of life in Israel.  These members of student government, leaders of campus organizations and student journalists, return with a greater understanding of Israel, and actively work for a more balanced and constructive approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on their own campus. 

4. Fostering Strong US-Israel Relations

ADL uses its voice to foster a strong relationship between the United States and Israel – on the municipal, state and federal levels.  We encourage public officials to speak out against BDS and deepen the alliance between the U.S. and Israel.  We educate about Israel and the conflict so there will be greater knowledge and understanding of these complex issues.  We expose efforts to delegitimize Israel, or hold it to a different standard. 

5. Real-Life Strategies: Researching the Issue

We are actively developing real-life strategies to fight and marginalize the BDS campaign.  Through our project with the Reut Institute, we are mapping where the BDS campaign is most effective today, where it might appear tomorrow, and the most effective tools ADL and wider Jewish community can employ to counter it.

"The tactics employed by the BDS movement - along with the continued efforts by anti-Israel student groups seeking to stifle discourse about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Israel in general through disruption and defamation - is a deeply troubling phenomenon that has contributed to an atmosphere at some institutions where Jewish and pro-Israel students feel uncomfortable voicing their views or even asserting their Jewish identity." - ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt