Thursday, 23 May 2013

D Kirsner et al THE PUNCH / BDS / Hot chocolate a cure for those who ignore history

18 August 2011

This article was co-authored by Professor Douglas Kirsner, Ari Suss and Geoffrey Winn.
A militant campaign that singles out Israel alone in the world as worthy of boycott, divestment and sanctions has met with a surprising form of resistance. Michael Danby MP, the Member for Melbourne Ports, has been organizing these Hot Chocolate ‘sit-ins’ together with members of the ALP leadership and other public figures such as Gerard Henderson and Jana Wendt.
Kevin Rudd and fellow Labor MP Michael Danby at the Max Brenner Chocolate Bar. Picture: Ben SwinnertonKevin Rudd and fellow Labor MP Michael Danby at the Max Brenner Chocolate Bar. Picture: Ben Swinnerton
Gerard Henderson explained the context in his Sydney Morning Herald column Jews know acceptance still has its exceptions when he pointed to the 1930s British Fascists’ targeting and smashing up Jewish-owned shops in London’s East End.
After reading Henderson’s column,  Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd suggested to Danby that he join him for a hot chocolate at Max Brenner’s Melbourne CBD shop. That Max Brenner shop was the target of violent anti-Israel protest by BDS militants on July 1. The police made nineteen arrests during the violent protest.
Four of these have now been rearrested for breach of bail conditions. Similar events were repeated in Sydney and again in Melbourne, halting commerce at nearby businesses as well.
Following this, Communications Minister, Senator Stephen Conroy and Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Senator David Feeney joined Mr Danby at Max Brenner’s South Melbourne premises
Senator Conroy was even stronger than Mr Rudd in the Australian Government’s condemnation of what they perceived as a boycott of Jewish commerce, “I am here as a Senator of Victoria and to represent the official position of the ALP that is for the State of Israel and against the boycotts”. Senator Conroy also raised concerns regarding the boycotts : “The Gillard Government remains concerned by any groups advocating a boycott of Israeli products or services or Jewish businesses and business people like Frank Lowy and Revlon’s chairman, Ronald Perlman, who is a trustee of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre”.
Michael Danby was harshest in his comments about the BDS militants: “Let’s call a spade a spade. These people advocate a boycott of Jewish commerce. Anyone who wants to see what these people really stand for need to only look at the slogan chanted by them when they protest Max Brenner or other Israeli and Jewish shops. Their slogan From the River to the Sea is a Hamas slogan.”
These are not people who want some equitable solution to the Palestinian question with a Palestinian state alongside Israel they want a Palestinian state instead of Israel hence the slogan “from the River ( Jordan) to the Sea (Mediterranean )”.
Danby organized a third Hot Chocolate event in Marrickville in Sydney where Greens Mayor Fiona Byrne had her Council pass a motion boycotting Israeli businesses. He was joined by AWU Secretary Paul Howes, former ALP president and Indigenous activist Warren Mundine, Sydney Institute Director Gerard Henderson, former NSW Treasurer Eric Roozendahl, and author and broadcaster Jana Wendt, and comedian Sandy Gutman.
Automatic Israel critic Antony Lowenstein has of course jumped on board to defend the Green left weekly boycotters, claiming in his blog that the “peaceful” protestors have been maligned in the Murdoch press. He assailed The Australian as loving “Muslim-bombing” and The Australian journalist Cameron Stewart for his “poor journalism” because he failed to search Google to find a Max Brenner “connection” to the Israeli Defence Forces! Apparently, according to the tortured stream of “logic” by defenders of this selective boycott like Lowenstein, the Strauss Group who owns Max Brenner also owns Elite Chocolates, which provides chocolates in packages to units in the Israeli army.  This is the basis for Lowenstein and others obsession with undermining chocolate shops in Newtown, Brisbane’ Southbank or the Adelaide Mall. 
It is hypocritical for Lowenstein to support a boycott of Israel using the absurd leaps of logic to alleged human rights violations, when they are silent over Syria, which has this year murdered 2000 of its own civilian protestors using tanks, helicopters. This carnage barely registers on Loewenstein’s blog, most of his and the militant far lefts interests focus in how awful Israel is. Loewenstein and his fellow boycotters focuses on Israel,  suggesting motives beyond the actual situation on the ground in the Middle East
Meanwhile, Victorian Government’s call for the ACCC to investigate the anti-Israel boycotts is a valuable move. Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu called the boycott campaign deeply offensive and unacceptable. “The targeting of businesses because of their religious or cultural association offends the whole community and undermines our multicultural society,” he said. Victorian Consumer Affairs Minister Michael O’Brien also voiced his serious concern. ‘‘To target businesses because they’re owned by Israelis or because they do business with Israel is entirely unacceptable and in our view sets a very, very ugly precedent,’’ Mr O’Brien said.
The success of the proposed referral to the ACC will be a matter of law, but it highlights the bigotry of the BDS movement that attacks Israel alone for alleged abuses of human rights. It must be emphasized that the protestors have not shown an equal willingness to target Australian businesses that sell goods from clearly repressive regimes including Libya and Syria, where thousands of activists have been killed this year.. These demonstrators target one country alone, and as Foreign Minister Rudd observed, it should recall for all Australians a shocking historical precedent. 

Most commented



    • Charles says:

      07:30am | 18/08/11
      An article in ‘Jerusalem World News’ reports that Meyer M. Treinkman, out of the kindness of his heart, offered to assist them in their boycott make their boycott complete. 
      An extract follows: “A Muslim who has heart disease must not use Digitalis, a discovery by a Jew, Ludwig Traube. Should he suffer with a toothache, he must not use Novocaine, a discovery of the Jew, Alfred Einhorn. If a Muslim has diabetes, he must not use insulin, the result of research by Oskar Minkowski, a Jew.”

    • John the Zombie says:

      08:32am | 18/08/11
      Isnt there a gentlemen who had funny white hair and glasses who is the basic father of modern day pyhics and is the reason we have so many of todays modern inventions due to him. He was a Jew as well.
      Yes its Albert Einstien but dont tell the greens that.
      Also note a spoke to someone from the Greens party the other day ad they had bo idea about the world at all.

    • Andrew says:

      04:24pm | 18/08/11
      Arabs invented nothing I guess, number 0 comes to mind.

    • Ronk says:

      04:59pm | 18/08/11
      Andrew, you should have stopped after your first three words which are basically correct. Arab Moslems invented nothing useful of any consequence. The concept of zero was an Indian invention which the Arabs stole and passed off to Europeans as their own.
      From the dawn of recorded history to the 7th century AD, the Middle East was the cradle of civilisation, at the forefront of just about every technological and civilisational advance. Then in the 7th century the Moslem armies conquered it and within a couple of generations all this came to the end and the Middle East became the world’s technological and civilisational backwater which it has remained ever since.

    • Al says:

      09:27am | 19/08/11
      It is well worthwhile reading a Wikipedia article before posting a link to it. Avicenna was a Persian, not Arab. Most Persians will find it offensive that you cannot tell the difference.

    • fml says:

      11:45am | 19/08/11
      I know, But the original poster quoted muslim. Didnt make reference to whether they were Arab or persian.

    • Fred says:

      01:39pm | 20/08/11
      Why don’t the Greens baptise/rename Marrickville Nuremberg No 2. The laws of boycott and sheer hatred would come out
      easier.They are priming Australia for their dictatorship.

    • Spaghetti Godess says:

      08:04am | 18/08/11
      This is the 21st Centruy!  I would have thought by now sane people would have woken up tothe fact the holey books are a mixture of fiction and fable and the believers stopped thinking their version of the invisible man was right.  So instead, insanity reigns in the name of faith.

    • Timmy says:

      12:48pm | 18/08/11
      This is the 21st Centruy!  I would have thought by now sane people would have woken up tothe fact the holy books are a mixture of fiction, fable, poetry and a surprising amount of verifiable historical accuracy.
      I would also think that those opposed to religious views could attempt to put their views respectfully, rather than using derisive language in order to imply that the religious minded of the world people of the world are somehow all mindless idiots. A fact that actually does not exist in reality (as evidenced by the first post in this forum).
      While I do not agree with Judaism, and feel that the state of Israel could treat others better, I would content that the left’s issue here stems from the (possibly unjustifiable) favour that Israel traditionally enjoys in the American right.

    • malohi says:

      12:55pm | 18/08/11
      Do they also include a mixture of holes?

    • stephen says:

      08:11am | 18/08/11
      The AFP should try and find a connection between this mob of chocky-haters and Hamas…then ban them.

    • John the Zombie says:

      11:04am | 18/08/11
      Actually by right if someone wanted they could take the Greens and this mob to the UN human rights commission and have them charged with racial vilification.

    • fml says:

      05:34pm | 18/08/11
      Green isn’t a race so its not racism.

    • Fiddler says:

      08:18am | 18/08/11
      Good to see some Labor figures actually showing some form of common sense in showing opposition to these feral lefties

    • Tom says:

      01:16pm | 18/08/11
      Agreed, who would have thought that Conroy had some decency? He just went up a few points in my eyes.

    • Craig says:

      03:22pm | 18/08/11
      We should also organise a counter-boycott of Palestinian goods and services to show how we disapprove of “tactics” like targetting civilians with missiles and repressing their own citizens in the name of Islam.
      Oh, wait a minute, Palestine’s only significant export these days is terror.  Never mind then.

    • podreda says:

      09:32pm | 18/08/11
      @ Tom. Why would you suggest that Conroy lacks decency? You gave no examples, no indication that such a thing was evidenced. And then, in a moment of what?, thought?, you changed your mind somewhat.
      What sent you one way, and then sent you the other way? Or are you just another Abbotteer. Uninformed criticism for the sake of uninformed criticism?
      Please answer. It should be most interesting.

    • TomZ says:

      11:46am | 19/08/11
      @podreda, I am glad you asked. Conroy wants to inflict a white elephant NBN on Australians. Whenever he is confronted with legitimate questioning, he just blathers. The mouth motors and the words just tumble out. It is a “skill” that Conroy developed in his shop steward days.
      Conroy wants to put censoring on the NBN, which raises more than just a suspicion that he is of totalitarian inclinations. Whenever he is confronted with legitimate questioning, he just ....
      Conroy has emerged from a “whatever it takes” culture that thrives in NSW Labor and has spread to the Federal sphere. Conroy is thick in a union culture that thinks its OK to smash up parliament house in anger, buy prostitutes for their mates with union money, accept bribes, associate with pedophiles and sell out Australian workers who had trusted the Conroys of the world to protect them.
      Given that hating Jews is the latest little fetish of the wanking class being the Greens and inner city Labor types, I had wrongly thought that Conroy would jump straight onto that bandwaggon (as I am sure plenty of his “mates” are already there). I was wrong because Conroy refused in this case to go along with the disgusting anti-Jewish racism starting to emerge in Australia and, as I said, all power to him.

    • Nigel says:

      08:23am | 18/08/11
      Its funny how nobody blinked an eye at the boycotts of countries like South Africa which had racist and separatist policies which the broader world found unacceptable. Yet strangly when a country like Israel has the exact same policies any expression of disgust and abhorrence of these blatant breaches of human rights is immediately condemned.
      What hypocrisy. When will people have the spine to stand up against any form of human rights violations and racism irrespective of who the perpetrators might be. Does the holocaust give Israel a permanent “get out of gaol free” card to deny people their right to dignity and autonomy?
      How many more human rights violations do you turn a blind eye to before the overwhelming evidence is enough to persuade you that what’s wrong is wrong no matter who is doing it.

    • Alex says:

      08:56am | 18/08/11
      Which policies are exactly the same? Can you be specific.

    • HappyCynic says:

      09:10am | 18/08/11
      If you want to boycott Israeli goods then do so, the Israeli government is certainly not above criticism, but just remember now all Jews are Israelis and vice versa.  Boycotting Jewish businesses because you’re too stupid to realise that those of the Jewish faith aren’t all from Israel or even supportive of Israel just makes you look like a bigot and you should rightly be called out for your idiocy.
      Also using any form of violence or vandalism is absolutely unacceptable, you have much better ways of getting your point across, try using them once in a while.

    • John the Zombie says:

      01:49pm | 18/08/11
      Nigel shall we boycott China (oops there goes our trade), should we boycott India, should we boycott Sri Lanka, should we boycott the USA, should we boycott the UK etc, etc.
      tell me Nigel should we boycott them all. Do not forget that Isreal was set up legally by the world body, and if you disagree then read my bit about Pakistan/India. It was 5 Muslim countries Iran, Syria, Eygpt, Palastine, Lebenon and Yemen that declared war on Isreal. Seems you forget that over the period these countries used loud speakers to tell the Isreali’s they were coming to kill them and to drive them to the sea. Start reading the fully history before making comment.

    • Tom says:

      02:42pm | 18/08/11
      @John the Zombie, it is a waste of time asking Nigel to “Start reading the fully history before making comment.” He just doesn’t understand.
      Nigel is from the left and the left just love the sound of their own cliches. However, ill informed and bigotted their argument might be, they lace their diatribes with puffed up self-righteous bombast in order to crash though the crap detectors.

    • fml says:

      05:33pm | 18/08/11
      John the Zombie,
      Iran never declared war on israel. Once again this article asks to learn history. not make it up

    • fml says:

      05:35pm | 18/08/11
      The right just make up plain lies and call it the truth,
      When was the last time Iran started a war? Tell me that, which is what John the zombie claims as truth?

    • Nathan says:

      02:10am | 19/08/11
      Firstly i am from the left but still think calling Israel racist and separateness a bit much. If you had those surrounding you wanting to wipe you off the planet you would be selective as to who comes and goes. In saying that though there are question marks over Israel but to solely blame them is stupid.
      As for Iran don’t ever pretend that they are not a threat. They are you know it don’t defend a regime that does what they do.

    • Al says:

      09:36am | 19/08/11
      John the Zombie:
      It was Iraq who declared war on Israel in 1948, not Iran.

    • TomZ says:

      12:10pm | 19/08/11
      “Iran Declares War Along its Northwest Border, Israeli Air Plan Ready?”
      The point by John the Zombie, you so wish to slither away from is that Israel is not the sole aggressor and evidence points to the opposite being the case.
      BTW: since you choose to be so pedantic, John the Zombie, used the word “declared”, not “started”. At least have the decency to apply the same rules you stipulate for others to your own biased poison.

    • Darren says:

      08:43am | 18/08/11
      I boycott Max Bremmer - cause their hot chocalate tastes like crap - did nott know the guy was Jewish - and who cares!

    • AFR says:

      02:51pm | 18/08/11
      Speak for yourself - i think their HC craps on those snobby places where they hand you an empty mug and two small jugs of chocolate and milk and expect you to make it yourself….

    • MarkS says:

      08:50am | 18/08/11
      Israel is an apartheid state, founded by terrorists & ethnic cleansing. But many still believe that Israel can be made to see reason. Nobody believes that states such a Syria will ever see reason. Frankly I consider that the boycotts are a waste of time.
      Many will scream that I am anti-Semitic, leaving aside for the moment that both Israelis &  Palestinians are semitic, it is simply not true. But I refuse to wear a blindfold when those I consider friends do something I dislike.
      Most nations have their sins of origin, Australia does, but we have tried to make it better. At present Israel is making it worse. The occupation & settlement building is an abomination, that I fear will result in the final destruction of both the Isaeli & Palestinian peoples.

    • John the Zombie says:

      11:09am | 18/08/11
      MarkS this arguement can be put also against Pakistan if you knw what happened during partation in 1947. Let me ask you this, if India today annouced that it wanted Pakistan back as it was illegally taken from it in 1947 then would you agree with them and if Pakistan refused and India went to war with them and fired missiles and sent suicide bombers into Pakistan would you be accepting that they are alllowed to as they are fighting for their land back.
      Remember most Indian did not agree with Ghandi, Jindah and Nehru splitting India into two.

    • AdamC says:

      11:27am | 18/08/11
      Spot on, John. I have always found Pakistan’s occupation of north western India quite outrageous. Unfortunately, Pakistan is an apatheid state founded by terrorists and based on ethnic cleansing (much more successful than Israel’s) and can’t ever see reason.
      You might call me islamophobic, but there are more muslims in India than in Pakistan and they, by and large, manage to avoid the lure of extremism, unlike those in Pakistan. (Or Palestine, for that matter.)

    • John the Zombie says:

      12:26pm | 18/08/11
      AdamC I dont find you that at all. As it was my community and the Hindu community who felt the violence.
      Many will argue it was both sides but what many dont know is that it was Pakistan who started it. Pakistan that sent the first train to India, Amristar with dead bodies and women raped.
      It was Pakistan that sent soldiers to kill sikh and Hindu families and it was Pakistan that first used the raping of women as a way of breeding the sikh and hindu out of Pakistan.

    • Shane says:

      01:50pm | 18/08/11
      John, Wondering who in Pakistan or India is calling for a boycott campaign.  Seems to me like attempting to divert peoples attention from the issue at hand (much like the article itself).
      In 2005, Palestinian Civil society called for a non-violent campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanction against Israel until it complied with international law, gives the Palestinian people the right of self determination, allows refugees to return to their homes and gives Palestinian Israeli citizens equal rights under law to Jewish Israeli citizens.

    • John the Zombie says:

      02:37pm | 18/08/11
      Shane so the constent rockets that are fired into Isreal are non violent, the constent suicide bombing are non violent. Also Shane I think you better have a closer look at what the Palastines really want. They want Isreal gone, not to exsist. For them to be driven into the seas as HAMAS the legal govt that they voted in put it. Nothing more then that.
      How did Isreal steal the land, were they not at war and who won. Isreal did and by international law the winner gets the goods.
      Ok Shane here is one. Large numbers of Sikhs in India are calling for a independent state called Khalistan. This will be made up of the entire north region which is Punjab. This will include Dehli as well. Are you willing to support it?

    • AdamC says:

      02:59pm | 18/08/11
      John, I wasn’t being sarcastic. Well, I sort of was, but I think the comparison is warranted. Palestinians seem to be some sort of protected species in international relations, with only a few nations - Australia among them - prepared to hold Palestinians to anything like the same standards as Israel.
      I don’t understand why any fair minded person would ‘boycott’ Israel and not heaps of other countries. Or, for that matter, they should boycott Hamas which, on anything like a fair or even simply sane assessment, is much worse than Israel.

    • Nathan says:

      02:16am | 19/08/11
      @ John the Zombie
      You really make me laugh with one sided comments. I know people from the region you discuss who have a disdain for Indians as many of their family was murdered by Indians and feel more equated with the Pakistani’s.
      The two situations are different you know they are as well you are actually an antagnostic person who is most likely well read and educated but still narrow minded

    • adam says:

      11:08am | 18/08/11
      I see why this article may have “disappeared” for a while the

    • Anna C says:

      11:30am | 18/08/11
      While Israel may have its problems; it is a beacon of democracy when compared to the rest of the Middle East which can only be described as an Islamic cesspool.
      I think it is very hypocritical of groups like the Greens to be calling for boycotts/sanctions against Israel and Jewish businesses, when any sane person can see that Islamic countries in the Middle East as responsible for far more human rights abuses than the state of Israel.
      The Greens should get their head out of the sand. They should do something useful such as advocating for the rights of women in these backward Islamic states?

    • Speck says:

      11:50am | 18/08/11
      Anna, as a Jew (but not an Israeli) I find the ‘Islamic cesspool’ part of your comment very unhelpful to the narrative.  Many Jews are after a real peace, and have no problem accepting a two-state solution, many agree that Israel does not always help its cause with its reactions. Many are happy to work with their Islamic neighbours.  While I agree the actions of the Greens are exceptionally disappointing, I don’t think using inflamatory language against another group adds anything positive to the conversation…

    • Nigel says:

      11:52am | 18/08/11
      So Anna what you are saying is that if you only abuse people’s human rights a little then that is OK. You can’t be a little bit pregnant. Either you abuse human rights or you don’t.
      Seems like the UN and NATO have no problem supporting those people in the Middle East who strive for democracy - except for the Palestinians.
       And Israel a “beacon of democracy”? I don’t think so.
      And by the way Alex, if you have to ask “what policies” then you really have no idea about what is happening in Israel, Gaza or West Bank.

    • Anna C says:

      02:32pm | 18/08/11
      “So Anna what you are saying is that if you only abuse people’s human rights a little then that is OK.”
      Nigel name me a country which hasn’t been accused by someone or some group of having abused someone’s human rights? I can’t think of any.

    • fml says:

      05:39pm | 18/08/11
      Spot on. It seems like the situation between Israel and Palestine is being muddied by people who are not directly involved, usually quite aggressively too.

    • Anna C says:

      08:21am | 19/08/11
      fml, you are mistaken. Switzerland has also committed human rights abuses according to Amnesty International. Have a look for yourself
      I was a member of Amnesty International for many years and can pretty much guarantee that there are no countries who haven’t violated someone’s human rights. I used to spend my free time writing letters to all sorts of countries lobbying on behalf of people who have had their human rights trampled upon.

    • fml says:

      11:47am | 19/08/11
      It was worth a guess!
      Ummm, what about Canada? they seem pretty cruisy

    • Anubis says:

      11:38am | 18/08/11
      The Racial Vilification laws should be used against these bigotted ar*ewipes who are participating in these protests.

    • Max, of Rocky says:

      11:42am | 18/08/11
      Multiculturism is alive and not well in our wide brown land.  Insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting different results.  USA and Britain being a couple of cases.  We are no different, just we have not had as long for the rot to start smelling.

    • daya nand says:

      11:55am | 18/08/11
      Interesting to read the various comments. Now let us wait and see who is fair and just and whether some action should be taken against those who apparently are racists and therefore ilegal. And some are our politicians??

    • TomZ says:

      12:24pm | 19/08/11
      Quick, take the red one.

    • AllanJ says:

      11:58am | 18/08/11
      Most people try to temper their feelings about particular racial groups and, in so doing, to gain a balanced view of their circumstances and motivation.
      It is, therefore, of particular concern when we witness such blatant, malicious and rampant racism as this surfacing within our own community.  They are not targeting Israel because of what they have done (much worse has been and is being done elsewhere) but because of who they are.
      Israel is a tiny country less than one tenth (1/10) the size of New Zealand with a population of 7 to 8 million (of which about 5.7 millions are Jews), who are enveloped by an ocean of 200 million Arabs and Persians, many of whom vehemently desire to see them wiped of the face of the earth.
      Have they over-reacted at times?  Arguably yes, but then anything they do in self-defence these days is deemed an over-reaction.  If I was in that situation I would probably over-react also.  What I am quite sure of is that if their harshest critics had to ensure their own survival in similar circumstances they would over-react to a far greater degree.
      Don’t expect these anti-semites to grow up and take a broader view of what is happening in the Middle East.  People swathed in such a cloak of malevolent hatred enjoy the feeling of moral superiority that it gives them and they seldom want to give it up, certainly not in the short term.

    • Steve Putnam says:

      12:37pm | 18/08/11
      Surely a case “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”. The logic of such a protest would lead to a boycott of all countries.
      The argument isn’t advanced by citing Henderson’s article as giving “context” to the protests. As with most of his stuff “context” is conspicuous by its absence. He points to Mosley’s British Union of Fascists thuggish activities but makes no mention of the stiff opposition they encountered. When they tried to march through a Jewish area of the East End in 1936 they were prevented from doing so by a crowd estimated at 300,000 by the Metropolitan Police. As the Jewish population of England at the time was about 50,000, it is obvious that the overwhelming majority of people were bitterly opposed to Mosley’s anti-semites, but Henderson gives the impression that they were tolerated. In doing so, Henderson is no better than the idiot left he denounces.

    • Leto says:

      12:48pm | 18/08/11
      Clearly if you don’t like the way the Israel treats Palestinians, you must be an anti Semitic Jew hating neo Nazi.
      Israel is a country, and Judaism is a religion. Guess what? I can disagree with Israeli policies without bringing religion into the equation.
      I don’t buy anything made in Israel, my own little economic sanction. Israel does not get a free pass on human rights because of the Holocaust.

    • AFR says:

      04:12pm | 18/08/11
      Your little protest isn’t exactly difficult. What do they make in Israel again?

    • stephen says:

      10:16pm | 18/08/11
      Not even the Zionists really believe that they need a home, at the expense of the Palestinians, because of the Holocaust.
      Jews need a home because they’re still alone. The Holocaust reminds them of this.
      You cannot believe that they merely want a compensation for crimes, and everyone else’s ignorance ?
      I don’t believe it.
      Pre ‘67 borders may not be enough for Israel to be fully self-functioning, and certainly the Palestinians should not get right-of-return.
      (And if you keep describing yourself as (not) an ‘anti-Semitic jew hating neo Nazi’ you will eventually become one.)

    • Shane says:

      01:43pm | 18/08/11
      This article is full of spin and seems unable to actually address any issues.  It begins by suggesting that Israel has been singled out as “alone int the world as worthy of boycott”.  Rather than speak to the issues these protests raise, the author suggests that if you don’t campaign about every problem in the world you should campaign about none.  To suggest it is “hypocritical for Lowenstein to support boycott of Israel . . . when they are silent over Syria which has murdered 2000 of its own civilians” is clearly diversionary.  No where in this article does the author attempt to answer the protestors critisisms of Israeli human rights abuses and apartheid structures.
      Authors then accuse the protestors of being anti-simetic and violent.  None of the 19 arrested have been charged with any violent offences.  When pressed in court as to what violence was seen at this demonstation, Police prosecution alleged that the picket line had “leaned” into the police line and that a protestor had kicked Police in the shins.  Hardly the violent demonstrations that police media releases and media outlets seem to be suggesting.  These allegations have not been proved and no charges have been laid in regard to them.  Footage of demonstrations clearly shows that Police have targetted those who spoke or held megaphones in an attempt to remove the leadership.
      Finally boycott call targets Israeli policy as opposed to Jewish people.  Any attempt to suggest the two are synonomous should offend Jewish people around the world.  Profits from Max Brenner does go directly and intentionally to supporting the Israeli Defence Force.  This makes it a clear and legitimate target of boycott.  Suggestions that this is anything like targetting of Jews in the 30s is again a diversionary tactic to avoid speaking to the real issues of the continuing oppression and disposession of the Palestinian people.

    • marley says:

      08:55am | 19/08/11
      As a matter of fact, targeting Max Brenner is EXACTLY synonymous with targeting Jewish people - because that’s what you’re doing.

    • Al says:

      12:00pm | 19/08/11
      It is indeed hypocritical to support this BDS campaign for the exact reason stated in the article – when there are far, far worse human right abuses in so many countries around the world. Imagine a police force arresting and jailing people for jaywalking, yet allowing murderers to walk free. This is exactly the kind of thing this BDS campaign is supporting.
      “Profits from Max Brenner does go directly and intentionally to supporting the Israeli Defence Force”
      Really? I thought Max Brenner is owned by a private company, with the profits going to shareholders. I did not realise it is owned by the state of Israel or its armed forces. Can you tell me please when this change of ownership took place?

    • Paulb says:

      03:04pm | 18/08/11
      Classic piece of Jewish “poor me” propaganda.  Only an ANTI-SEMITE would be critical in the slightest of Israel and its larcenous, murderous ways.  BDS is the first stand, long overdue, by people who believe Israel should at least live up to the standards so many Jewish “Social Justice” activist types are happy to set for everyone else.

    • John the Zombie says:

      04:01pm | 18/08/11
      Get over yourself Paulb. What would be your position if a group like BDS did the same for Australian business’s over our treatment of Aboriginals.
      Also note Isreal is only reacting to a group of murderers themselves. Now will BDS cover all countries that have committed human rights offences or you just gonna be selective.

    • Shane says:

      04:30pm | 18/08/11
      Can’t speak for Paul, but I would think it was fantastic.  The Intervention and other treatment of our First People is appalling

    • AdamC says:

      04:34pm | 18/08/11
      Actually, PaulB, the thing that most annoys me about Israel is the front of legitimacy it gives to obvious anti-semites like you. (Not that you wouldn’t find something else, anyway, of course.) Why don’t you boycott other countries that ate nastier than Israel? For that matter, why don’t you boycott Hizbullah?
      The fact is, you are just channeling your ethnic and religious intolerance towards something you can (unconvincingly) spin as being legitimate political activity. It’s quite transparent, if you were wondering.

    • fml says:

      05:43pm | 18/08/11
      What Hezbollah products are currently available on the australian market?

    • nikki heat says:

      03:09pm | 18/08/11
      economics and geography, science and maths, and latin and french or german are subjects taken by students that ignore history and english.
      Welfare and Government housing awaits those that ignore history and journalism ( history’s first draft ). You too can become the next Rick Castle!

    • Nikki Heat says:

      03:11pm | 18/08/11
      if you get hot chocolate when you ignore history, what do you get if you ignore coffee club gossip? The Tea Party

    • stephen says:

      03:34pm | 18/08/11
      Mate, if your on it, get off it.
      (And don’t forget your Capitals.)

    • Craig of North Brisbane says:

      03:24pm | 18/08/11
      Please don’t paint these BDS troglodytes as “the left”.  Me and all my lefty friends are also aghast at what these useful idiots for Hamas are doing.  Just call them what they really are, which is nuts!

    • John the Zombie says:

      03:41pm | 18/08/11
      Shane and others who support this type of boycott the problem I have is that you are selective about it. You choose to join the anti-Israel boycott as it is the in thing. You are not truly concerned about the truth of what’s happening but more of its cool to do so. Have you ever read the Fatwa and what it calls for and I am not talking about the one that calls for a boycott of good from Israel but the one that call for all Jews to be driven to the sea.
      Also if you were so serious about human rights and looking for justice why didn’t you and the Greens on June the 6th call for justice in regards to the Sikhs killed in India during operation blue star were over 8,000 innocent ppl were killed.
      How about joining in October to condemn the Indian govt in regards the 1984 anti-Sikh riots that saw mobs supported by police and politicians kill innocent Sikhs. In this case over 5,000+ were killed. Seven reports have been filed by different organisation outline politicians who were involved and guess what not one has been charged at all. Not one.
      How about when the Tiananmen Square massacre day comes across will the greens and you go and call for a ban on the sale of Chinese goods and the sales of good from Australia to China. The large amounts of profits go to the Chinese govt not the ppl and props there military allowing them to stay in power by oppressing the ppl. The ppl in that demonstration called for democracy yet were killed or jailed. Why are there no protests against Chinese goods or a boycott on Chinese goods? Will these ppl be standing in front of the Chinese stores and say to the shoppers they shouldn’t by the goods as they help prop are evil govt.  Shane you said that it is cos the Palatines want the right so how about the call from Muslim Chinese to allow them to have self-determination or from Buddhist monks who would like their homeland of Tibet back.
      Im sorry but by only supporting a cause and saying it is because human rights have been abused but at the same time not boycotting other groups that have committed worse atrocities then the Isrealis and in most cases they have been just protecting themselves.

    • fml says:

      05:45pm | 18/08/11
      Ok then John,
      What right did the british have to take away a peoples land and create the state of Israel in the first place?

    • John the Zombie says:

      11:32pm | 18/08/11
      Fml the British didn’t create Israel it was created after WW2 by the International community.
      Also fml if you go back in history all the Middle East was originally Jewish land and even further till the time of no religion.

    • Nathan says:

      02:35am | 19/08/11
      So the Jewish community has had a really easy run over the last thousand years or so and the land has no significance to them? It was actually the UN not Britain, the land was to be shared but only one side found this acceptable. The Jews wanted something for them wouldn’t you after the Holocaust and general treatment they received?
      I know there are two sides to a story and in all honesty the Israelis need to be held accountable for some of their actions. At the same time you have an unreasonable bunch trying to kill them all….i know which sides makes more sense to me. Oh and i an “lefty” as well

    • fml says:

      12:24pm | 19/08/11
      I dont want to see anybody killed, palestine at the time was a british mandate, i also dont think that it was right of the UN to take the land away. I do believe the israelies deserve their own home land, but i dont believe it should be at the expense of others,.

    • marley says:

      01:13pm | 19/08/11
      #fml - so, if Israel has a right to a homeland, but not at the expense of others, what exactly is your proposal?  Don’t you see, your statement is irreconcilable.  Which is the root of the problem in the first place.

    • stephen says:

      03:43pm | 18/08/11
      I’d like to see a protest against vicious dogs.
      (Um, yeah, something like the police line outside Brenners last week.)

    • Malleeringneck says:

      06:56pm | 18/08/11
      What I cannot understand is that when the left acts in a racist manner there are all kinds of supporters climbing out of the woodwork to defend them.
      When someone from the right or conservative side acts in the same manners all we hear are comments deriding there voice or actions and half the time they end up in court.
      So obviously there are totally different ways everyone and the law look at the same issue.
      Just depends who you are and who you are vilfying I suppose.

    • Ron V. says:

      10:07pm | 18/08/11
      Not a bad photo of Kevin Rudd and Michael Danby. Geez, Kev still looks pretty pale after his operation. What a shame we didn’t know that Conroy and Feeney were going to join them. Stephen knows how to spend money, he could have shouted coffee all day and claimed it as another expense to the NBN.

    • Mileidi says:

      11:31am | 08/02/12
      You miss the point.Not for the first time has a law been pasxed in a legislature who’s proponent’s know will be overturned by a court.The proponents of the bill have set a trap which ‘Peace Now’ (among others?) have fallen into.When the High Court strikes down this law will ‘Peace Now’ strike down their boycott?  I doubt it.  So after the law is struck down, ‘Peace Now’ members in Israel will look disloyal, and they won’t have an anti-boycott bill to hide behind anymore.

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