End Times - Summary
End Time Signs
The True End Time Church
Electronic ID - Human Implants
Middle East War
Israel - its Purpose
Equality Law & End Times
Roman Catholicism - Babylon?
Climate Change - IPCC
Climate Change - Hoax
Prophecy Coming True
God Judging Nations
Second Coming of Christ
End Times - Indepth Study
End Times - The Millennium
Apologetics - Summary
Abortion: Facts & Ethics
Truth - What is it?
Truth - The Source
Laws of Life
Paths of Life
Pluralism - Ways to God
Entry to Heaven
After Death - What?
Israel's Legal Borders
Israel Goods Boycott
The Palestinian Problem
Reality - Verify the Bible
Morality & Ethics
Age of the Earth
Biblical Dating of Earth
Young Earth Creationism
God's Amazing Design
Dawkins God Delusion
Atheism is Illogical
Evolution - the Truth
It's God's Weather
A Hurting World - Suffering
Religion Is Bad News
Steps You Should Take
Gifts For You
Promises For You
Adam: real or symbolic?
The Persecuted Church
Authority in Christ
Browse the Bible
Boycotts are social protests with the general aim of changing Israeli government policy.
A major and serious boycott for Israel is the economic boycott. One form is divestment (the opposite of investment), where investors refrain from investing in Israeli companies or in companies that trade with Israel. For example, in the future major European banks will bar their institutions from providing loans to Israeli companies that manufacture, build or conduct commerce in 'occupied' territories. This could include a bar on providing funding for mortgages in these territories.
Perhaps the best known boycott is the consumer boycott of Israeli products or businesses that operate in Israel. Other forms of boycott are the academic boycott of Israeli universities and scholars (including granting of scholarships and research funding) and the boycott of Israeli cultural institutions or Israeli sport venues.
But it is also claimed that the BDS campaign has a much wider objective; namely, the elimination of the Jewish State (calling it an inherently illegitimate, criminal entity like apartheid South Africa):
The Boycott is Illogical - and Your Loss!
Israeli fruit. Image: bigfoto
Since we live in an interconnected world it is virtually impossible to avoid using Israeli products. Take fresh agricultural produce for example. In 2010, Israel's fresh agricultural exports totalled $1.33 billion, and some 87% was exported to Europe [UN Commodity Trade Statistics]. Fruit, vegetables and herbs grown in Israel and on its settlements in the West Bank can be seen on sale at all the major supermarkets and greengrocers. The UK is the top market for Israeli citrus fruit, followed by Scandinavia, Russia, Germany and France. In UK supermarkets you will find avocado, sweet potato, tomatoes, galia melon, peppers, chilli, figs, strawberries, grapes, mango, plums, pomegranate, lychees and nectarines - all from Israel and its 'illegal' settlements! Is it logical to boycott Israeli fresh produce when we eat so much of it? And, despite increasing difficulties for Israeli exporters, will the boycott be totally effective? According to prophecy it won't:
"Israel will blossom and sprout, and they will fill the whole world with fruit." (Isa 27.6)
OK. So you should shop around for non-Israeli fresh produce (shopping may take a little longer). But what about your hi-tech world? Does your laptop have an Intel chip inside, or use a firewall, the Google search engine or Microsoft Office? If so, then you are using Israeli designs and innovations (likewise for your cell phone). In 2013 UK cosmologist Prof Stephen Hawking withdrew from a high-profile Israeli Presidential Conference in support of an academic boycott of the country. But to be consistent and fully boycott Israel his whole computer based communication system must be changed since it runs on Intel microchips designed in Israel!
Water for agricultural purposes is at a premium throughout the world - including Israel. But Israeli agricultural research has developed new technologies to enable farmers to use brackish (salty) water for irrigation. Since brackish water is abundant in most desert areas of the world, these Israeli techniques have wide international applications - providing they are not boycotted!
And what happens when you get sick? Are you going to boycott Israel's excellent medical work in areas of breast cancer, leukaemia, heart monitors, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease ... the list goes on and on. For more see the video:
Finally, but by no means least, do you realise that your boycott (which is a form of hatred towards Israel) puts you on the wrong side of the God of Israel? Remember, God says to Israel:
"I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse" (Gen 12.3)
The Boycott has no Legal Foundation
Today Israel is under international pressure (spearheaded by the UN) to withdraw from 'illegal' territories gained in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. As a start, the UN requests that Israel refrain from further settlement in such territories. The argument, quite understandably, centres on humanitarian grounds and the suffering of Palestinian Arabs. But the legality of the UN position needs to examined. In June 2011, Dr. Jaques Gauthier, an international human rights lawyer from Toronto addressed the European Parliament in Brussels on the legal issues regarding Jerusalem and Israel. Referring to the 1922 British Mandate for Palestine and to Article 80 of the UN Charter he said:
"For anyone who is interested in justice, these are issues which we have to study carefully ... the rights vested in the Jewish people stand on very solid legal ground and are valid to this day."
So let's take a quick look at the legal issues:
(for a detailed look at the historical and legal case for Israel see Israel's Borders)
Historically, although Muslims dominated Palestine at the start of the 20th century, there was no distinctive 'Palestinian people'. Historian Richard Hartmann claims that the inhabitants didn't share a common Arab identity but were an ethnic mix. So naturally the League of Nations 1922 British Mandate for Palestine (to establish a Jewish State) didn't recognise the existence of a 'Palestinian people'. Whilst Article 2 of the Mandate safeguarded the civil and religious rights of all inhabitants of Palestine irrespective of race or religion, it did not identify a Palestinian people.
In 1946 the League of Nations was dissolved and its assets and duties transferred to the UN. So the 1922 British Mandate Trust for Palestine was transferred to the UN (article 80 of the UN Charter). This Mandate included Gaza and today's West Bank (up to the Jordan) and so at this time these areas were legally mandated as part of the Jewish homeland and Jews could settle anywhere between the Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea. Legally, at this time these areas had never formally been allocated and were strictly unallocated Palestine Mandate territory. So there was no concept of 'occupation of illegally owned land'.
Shortly after the Jews proclaimed an Independent State of Israel in May 1948, five Arab armies (Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq) invaded Israel (the 1948-49 war). At the end of the war, Egypt held Gaza and Jordan held the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and east Jerusalem. Jewish communities in the West Bank that had existed prior to the Arab invasion were demolished, as was the Jewish quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem. From 1948-67, the city was divided between Israel and Jordan.
Here is the crucial point conveniently forgotten by the boycott campaign: it is the taking by war of mandated territory (territory mandated to the State of Israel) and subsequent occupation and annexation between 1949 and 1967 by Arab countries. So the Arab countries annexed the West Bank and E. Jerusalem only by war, and in 1967 Israel simply took back the Mandated Land!
Rather than admit this historical fact, the world insists that the 1967 war 'culminated in the occupation of E. Jerusalem and the West Bank' by Israel. The world believes a lie.
The 1967 UN Resolution 242 called for the "Withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict". It did not demand that "Israel pull back to the 1967 lines". Probably in recognition of the historical facts, Lord Caradon, the British Ambassador who drafted the resolution said:
"It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions prior to June 1967 (i.e. to the 1948 Armistice Lines) because those positions were undesirable and artificial."
Similarly, Arthur Goldberg, a drafter of Resolution 242 repeatedly stated that:
"... the armistice lines of 1948 were intended to be temporary ... this, or course, was particularly true of Jerusalem. At no time ... did I refer to East Jerusalem as occupied territory."
This view is supported by Prof. Judge Schwebel (former President of the UN ICJ) who states:
"The armistice agreements of 1949 expressly preserved the territorial claims of all parties and did not purport to establish definitive boundaries between them."
Given these UN statements regarding the pre-1967 war boundaries (the 'Green Line'), calls of 'occupation of Palestinian land' and 'illegal Israeli territories' are without legal foundation. The boundaries were 'artificial' and 'temporary', but this and the 1922 Mandate for Israel seems to have been conveniently forgotten by the international boycott community.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is the UN's highest legal body, and both the UN General Assembly and the UN Security Council look to the ICJ for legal advice. It is comprised of 15 international judges. The 2004 ICJ Advisory Opinion dealt with the legal implications of building a wall on the West Bank and the court declared the wall illegal. To counter this ruling, Israel maintains it only built the wall and fence to defend its citizens from Palestinian attacks and suicide bombings that had taken nearly 1,000 Israeli lives. Israel maintains that no court or international organization has the authority to determine how Israel protects its citizens.
Some use the 4th Geneva Convention to argue the Palestinian case for the West Bank. Article 49(6) states: "The occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own population into territories it occupies." Hence the call to stop settlements in the West Bank. But the historical fact remains that no Arab nation or 'Palestinian People' ever legally owned the West Bank - they simply annexed it by war. So it follows that Israel never legally 'occupied' it! The right of Jews to settle in the West Bank is still protected by Article 80 of the UN Charter.
Historically there have been several attempts at a 2-state solution. The Peel and Woodhead commissions of 1937 and 1938 recommended partitioning Palestine into a small Jewish state and a large Arab state, but this was rejected by the Arab leadership. Then in 1947 the UN General Assembly adopted a partition plan (UN Resolution GA 181) that partitioned Palestine equally into an Arab state and a Jewish state. The Jews accepted the UN resolution but again the Arabs rejected it.
In 2012 UN General Assembly resolution 67/19 upgraded Palestine to 'non-member observer state' status in the UN (like the Pope). In effect, this officially recognised a Palestinian State. But, legally, it is internationally recognised that the UN General Assembly can only recommend the establishment of a Palestinian State (as Resolution 181 recommended the establishment of the Jewish State in 1947). It is up to States themselves to assert state-like-control over their territory and affairs. But the 1988 Algiers declaration of Palestinian Statehood proved ineffective because the PA and the PLO could not meet the criteria for control. Can the Palestinian State control the various Arab factions (Fatah, Hezbollah, Hamas, al-Aqsa Martyrs, Muslim Brotherhood and al-Qaeda)? Incidently, BDS rejects the 2-State solution (see first video)!
The international boycott community has been lied to regarding 'occupied land' and 'illegal settlements'. Such terms are not legally justified and organisations like the UN, EU, banks and BDS have fallen into the well-known trap:
"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it ... the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie ..." [Joseph Goebbels]
Indeed, the real truth about Israel's borders has been removed from the media. As the Bible says;
"Truth has stumbled in the street ... yes, truth is lacking ..." (Isa 59.14,15)
Bible quotations are from the New American Standard Bible