Only one musical eminence in Israel boycott list

A roll of 343 UK academics have published an advertisement in the Guardian today, pledging to boycott Israeli institutions until Palestinian rights are restored.

The ad is a direct response to the letter by J K Rowling and others last week, urging dialogue rather than boycott as the best means of progress in the Middle East.

Today’s BDS list contains many of the usual suspects from a variety of disciplines. Surprisingly, there seems to be only one music scholar of international standing.

Step forward Laurence Dreyfus, of Magdalen College, Oxford.

laurence dreyfus

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      • He is not being silly, have a look at Hamas’s charter which aims to “kill all Jews” and eradicate the state of Israel

        • Your point about the Hamas Charter is valid.
          The word “Palestinian” is however not synonymous with the word “Hamas” or the word “murderer”.
          Part of the problem is that nobody seems to be able to go near any topic even remotely linked in any way to Israel/Palestine for longer than 5 minutes before the invariable “all Israelis…”/”all Palestinians…”/”all Jews…”/”all Muslims…” emotionally charged claptrap or outright hate-speech starts.

          • Interesting that your link is to a summary of the Charter rather than the full text. The 2nd para refers to the Zionist state. Zionism and Israel are not synonymous with Jews and Judaism, anymore than the Apartheid state was the embodiment of the white population, or the Nazi state was the same as the German people.

            The other para that you refer to is unpleasant indeed, but it is a direct quote from the Quran rather than a clear statement of aims by Hamas. It is also from a much longer article which outlines how Hamas should follow the prescriptions of the Quran. Moreover, the context of the quoted text from the Quran is a description of the end of time, rather than a call to action, in much the same way as all the Abrahamic religions predict similar bloodshed on the Day of Judgement. The passage in the Quran also distinguishes between righteous and sinful Jews.

            Now, personally, I don’t believe in any of this stuff. And there are plenty of bits of the Charter that I find offensive that you didn’t refer to. But to claim that the primary aim of Hamas or any section of the organised Palestinian resistance is to ‘kill all the Jews’ is false. The idea seems to be that so long as Jews and the rest of the world perceive Hamas as a successor to Pharaoh, Herod and Hitler then all the barbarism committed against the Palestinians is justified in order to prevent another Holocaust viz. Netanyahu’s bizarre recent attempt to blame the Grand Mufti (certainly a despicable person) for that genocide.

  • I am glad to see this and applaud them for their courage. Everyone is entitled to his opinion and free to make it known to the public. It is not easy to make a dialogue with someone (Israel) who always thinks the other’s point of view doesn’t count, especially as he is always pretending do make concessions but never does. As long as this blodshed continues and human rights are constantly violated, there is no credibility in any ‘cultural dialogue’. Mutual understanding has to take place on both sides and to be sincere and not just makeup. Recent utterances by Mrs Hotovely don’t help and make matters worse.
    I am afraid there will be no real solution to this ongoing and extremely complex problem without both sides making concessions that will touch sensitive points of their very being. Religion will have to be separated from politics to achieve any solution there. As long there is so much fanatism connected with ignorance, there will be no peace.

    • Ignorance is your word which describes your post very well. Do you people never listen to what the Palestinians say? They want all the land and the Jews dead. Any negotiations involving Palestine is a farce.

      • Read carefully Max Grimm’s post without saying : “The Palestinians”. I know the cyberspace in general, and this blog in particular, are not really a forum for moderate, nuanced, reasonable voices, but please could we avoid hasty generalizations (on both sides)? Can we recognize that Israel’s policy regarding the Palestinian problem is a failure and leads to dangerous, very dangerous consequences, without stigmatizing “the Israeli” in general? Can we agree that Palestinians have shown a very poor judgment in choosing their leaders, and that killing innocent people will not further their cause, without calling all Palestinian murderers ?

        • I take it that when someone approaches you wielding a knife with the clear intent to murder you, all you can think is “my policy to defend myself is a failue and leads to dangerous, very dangerous consequences”?

          • Hmmm… I’m trying to figure what your point is (if there’s any). The fact that innocent people get murdered should not prevent anybody from questioning both the legitimacy and the efficacy of their government’s policies. But of course, your appeal to emotion does not make for a rational argument, so I’m at loss.

            You’ve just proven my point about the impossibility of moderation and reason about this issue (and many others) in the cyberspace – and elsewhere, unfortunately.

      • …and vice versa. One of Israel’s biggest problem is that a considerable number of its inhabitants and influential friends abroad show the most primitive stubbornness and aggressive behaviour towards anything that might alleviate mutual understanding and respect. Unfortunately, some of them sit in the government. But they are certainly not in the majority, and probably never were. As for the militant part of the Palestinians – We all know their actions and opinions. But, please, what do you expect, if they are constantly provoked in the most rude and derogative way? They have no less national pride than their neighbours.

  • A list of Palestinian terrorist lovers works both ways, we can see those who are so gullible that they have swallowed Arab propaganda wholesale. They have no integrity and their judgement is flawed. We will remember you.

  • Another snoozer of an article. How many years has it been and we are still talking about cooperation between Palestinians and Israelis? All the acedemics in the world can sign that document an you won’t get inch closer to peace.

  • I must thank Tommo for being an excellent advertisement for the Palestinian cause. His racist rantings and ravings make our points about the nature of Zionism almost better than we can. Perhaps he is really a Hamas plant? Keep up the good work Tommo!

    • It must be particularly galling to you Palestinian lovers when they attack Israelis, fire rockets across the border and continue with their threats to murder Jews and take all their land. Your little brain must work overtime devising excuses for terrorism and trying to explain it away while somehow shifting the blame onto Israel. And then thankfully the Palestinian authorities issue a fake film or a staged incident that can save the day so that you needn’t have worried – lies and deceit have again salvaged your reputation as a useful idiot.

      • ‘Fake film’; ‘staged incident’?? Let me guess, your theory about the Kennedy assassination is that it was Arafat on he Grassy Knoll, as part of a plot to take over the USA and nuke Israel.

        Now me and my ‘little brain’ have got work to do, plotting the next move in our conspiracy to further the cause of international terrorism.

    • I do so wish I could put my finger on all this courage and leadership Nancy keeps saying NL displays. You two wouldn’t by chance be related, would you? The academics who signed the ‘advertisement’ (known as a letter if it is on NL’s side, but an ‘ad’, American-style, if not) show courage and leadership. Anyone who doesn’t think it takes courage for academics to take a stand on anything these days has never known academia, and certainly doesn’t now! That last line directed at Laurence Dreyfus is rather chilling, is it not? Has he not already stepped forward? Is there more you’d like him to do? If so, what? Are you now indeed the arbiter of what all others may or may not or should do? All you’ve ever done is stick up posts directing the attention of those of us who may not have seen it to a communication emblazoned on a press release or a page in a newspaper.

  • “Thank you Norman for your courage and leadership” means what? The current leadership of Israel is making no effort to commence a dialogue or to try defusing the conflict. More and more Israelis are buying weapons. The situation is headed for a blood-bath that will be historic by any measure and neither Norman or the majority of the Israeli public seem to want to avoid that. American support is slipping away and they do not care. Real leadership would want to find a way out of the tunnel. This conflict was historically not always moving toward darkness. It is now.

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