By Sun Tzu
The University of Pennsylvania is the home of the 2012 “National Conference of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement” (BDS), whose origins lie in the actions of nations and groups including Iran, Hamas, and Hezbollah. The three-day event will take place on the U Penn campus February 3-5 and feature a variety of speakers with antisemitic, extreme views, such as Ali Abunimah, who has stated, “none of the European and American leaders who constantly lecture about Holocaust denial will dare to admonish Netanyahu for his bald lies and omissions about Israel’s ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians.”
The group’s official web page states:
PennBDS is a recognized student group at the University of Pennsylvania that advocates for, and educates the Penn community about, the growing global campaign to boycott, divest from and sanction (BDS) the State of Israel until it complies with its obligations under international and human rights law. We categorically oppose all forms of bigotry and racial, ethnic and religious discrimination, including anti-Arab, anti-Semitic, and Islamophobic racism and hate. We are presently in the process of formulating a two-tiered campus boycott and divestment campaign that will target Israeli products on campus and the financial services corporation TIAA-CREF. We hope to formally launch these campaigns at our 2012 National BDS Conference.
Front Page Magazine remarks that the university may be granting leniency to this group with rules that govern other organizations hosted by the school:
They say that the university is on record as not supporting this movement, yet they let the event go forward, providing space and possibly funding, despite the fact that the sponsors may not meet school requirements as a recognized group and that their anti-Semitic message is deeply hostile to academic freedom and basic human decency. The university appears to be bending rules that would be rigidly enforced for sponsors of another cause.
U Penn’s willingness to enable the BDS conference is particularly inexplicable given the fact that this growing movement to boycott Israel and Israeli-produced goods, force divestment from any companies that do business with Israel, and establish sanctions against Israel due to its supposed violations of human rights, was created by nations and groups seeking to delegitimize and destabilize Israel such as the terrorist-sponsoring nation of Iran and the terrorist groups Hezbollah, and Hamas.
As Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz has noted, the BDS movement abets terrorism: “People who advocate boycotts and divestiture will literally have blood on their hands,” he said. “They encourage terrorism and discourage the laying down of arms.” Even Noam Chomsky stated recently that BDS was “hypocritical” in its pretense to be concerned about Israeli human rights violations and that the movement could be called anti-Semitic “with justice.”…