Israel Increasingly Sees Boycotts as Existential Threat
While rarely successful in high-profile cases, BDS has succeeded in legitimizing the notion that Israel shouldn’t exist
A handful of recent victories for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement have Israelis concerned that this growing phenomenon could become, and perhaps already is an existential threat to the Jewish state.
“BDS has been winning the battle for public perception,” noted prominent columnist Ben-Dror Yemini in Yediot Ahronot. “Those who claim that BDS will not affect the Israeli economy are correct. For now. …But it’s an illusion. On campuses, at research institutes, and in media outlets, there has been a consistent, protracted, and dangerous erosion of support for Israel.”
The most stunning achievement of the BDS movement has been legitimizing the notion that Israel has no right to exist at all. BDS exploits the language of human rights in order to attract well-meaning people, even as delegitimizing the miracle of Israel’s modern rebirth.
Yemini and others worry that Israel, content with legal victories and the steady support of older generations, is doing too little to combat this phenomenon.