Aletho News

ΑΛΗΘΩΣ

Senate Dems Join Republican Attack on Palestinian Solidarity

teleSUR | February 10, 2017

On Tuesday, eight Democratic senators joined former Republican presidential hopeful Marco Rubio in introducing a Senate bill attacking the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, BDS, which aims at ending the illegal occupation of Palestine and ongoing violations of human rights by Israeli authorities.

Rubio said the bill, titled The Combatting BDS Act of 2017, will “fight back” against the the growing BDS movement by “affirming the legal authority of state and local governments to take tangible actions to counter economic warfare against Israel.”

The bill would allow state and local governments to withdraw funding for any organization “engaged in BDS conduct,” thus giving them “an offensive capability against entities seeking to economically harm Israel,” according to Rubio’s statement announcing the legislation.

“This bipartisan legislation gives state and local governments a legal way to combat the shameful boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel,” said Democratic senator for West Virginia Joe Manchin, a co-sponsor of the bill.

Rubio also explicitly stated that the proposed legislation is a response to the historic U.N. Security Council resolution calling on Israel to end its construction of illegal settlements in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Rubio’s bill is the first attempt to make national several anti-Palestinian solidarity measures passed by state legislatures in Wyoming and New York. Similar to those attempts, however, this legislation will likely fail any constitutional test.

“The Rubio bill doesn’t solve the fundamental problem with these anti-BDS laws, which is that they violate the First Amendment,” said Rahul Saksena, a staff attorney with Palestine Legal, in an interview with The Electronic Intifada.

“Boycotts have been used throughout U.S. history ― from the Boston Tea Party, to the Civil Rights Movement, to the anti-South African ( Apartheid movement ― to challenge injustice and promote social change,” said Palestine Legal and the Center for Constitutional Rights in a statement responding to New York State’s so-called “blacklist” bill passed in December of last year.

Launched in 2005 by 170 Palestinian civil society organizations — including unions, refugee networks, women’s organizations and professional associations — and inspired by the anti-Apartheid movement, the BDS movement calls on individuals and organizations to pressure the Israeli government to end its illegal occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, recognize the right of return of Palestinian refugees and guarantee full civil and human rights to Arab-Palestinian citizens of the Israeli state.

February 10, 2017 - Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Another case of the USA Government’s Bi-partisan approach to protecting Israel while America’s domestic problems take a back seat. These politicians(Repubs and Democrats) sing from the same hymn sheet when it comes to Israel, every time.
    Instead of America’s political representatives(of the people) being pressured to sign a document endorsing Israel when they get elected, they should be required to sign a document endorsing the USA.
    Israel CLEARLY exercises “UNDUE INFLUENCE” over America’s domestic, and international politics….

    Comment by Brian Harry, Australia | February 10, 2017 | Reply

  2. Thank you for this posting. Rubio — and Manchin and all the other traitorous Zionist Israel-firsters infesting the U.S. government (sic), Jews or not — should be shipped off to some unknown destination and eventually erased from the pages of time and history. That won’t happen, of course, and the Palestinians are consigned to suffer yet more years and probable decades of vindictive oppression, deprivation of human rights, illegal occupation of their land, and a vast enterprise of injustice that exceeds any other.

    Palestine Is Still THE Issue!

    Comment by roberthstiver | February 10, 2017 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s