By Avraham Reiss
November 23, 2010
A few regulars on the JC Blogs have recently been cooperating with each other in combatting a blatant anti-Israeli decision by the Methodist Church in the UK, to boycott goods from Israeli settlements.
Read the actual decision at:
-which is a private blog owned by a Methodist minister.
Note at the end, the wording:
"The Conference notes the call of the WCC in 2009 for an ‘international boycott of settlement produce and services’ and calls on the Methodist people to support and engage with this boycott of Israeli goods emanating from illegal settlements (some Methodists would advocate a total boycott of Israeli goods until the Occupation ends)."
And very near the beginning, note also:
"The Methodist Church has consistently expressed its concern over the illegal Occupation of Palestinian lands by the State of Israel."
In other words, the Methodist Church has decided that (1) Israeli rule over Judea, Samaria and Gaza represents "illegal Occupation of Palestinian lands by the State of Israel", and (2) calls for a boycott of Israeli goods emanating from illegal settlements (and note the "extra" in brackets at the end).
Jonathan Hoffman, vigilant as ever, pointed out the severity of the above decisions, and a few JC Bloggers entered the fray.
Basically, we pointed out to them that "Palestine" ceased to exist on 15th May 1948, that all lands under discussion thus became Israeli, Jordanian or Egyptian, this continuing until June 1967, when in a defensive war the IDF gained control of these areas. In subsequent, separate peace agreements with Egypt and Jordan, both these two countries refused to take back the areas under discussion, thus leaving them under Israeli control, which is the position today.
There cannot be, therefore, any possible "illegal Occupation of Palestinian lands" (sic), since there have been no such things as "Palestinian lands" since 1948, at which time the Jews living in Eretz Yisrael were also "palestinians", and so therefore were their lands. But NOT since 1948. There is no "Palestine", and there are no "Palestinians".
The Methodists involved in the discussion had no rebuttal to these facts, and wriggled out of the implication that honesty required them to re-think their decision, by saying "we view history differently". Of course, no explanations as to how "differently", were offered.
Had these people been a little more knowledgeable about the people they had decided to boycott, they could have given us a much better answer.
It would have gone as follows:
"What are you complaining about? Your own New Israel Fund regards these areas as Occupied, and strives to end this Occupation. How do we know? Because it says so on the New Israel Fund's website, at:
"If you scroll thru to the page on that website at:
you will see an article headed "Selected NIF Policies", under which you will find written:
"What is NIF's position on boycott, divestment and sanctions?
NIF supports an end to the occupation of Palestinian territories as a central tenet of the strategic framework in which we operate."
Further down on that page, you will find:
"NIF will not fund BDS activities nor support organizations for which BDS is a substantial element of their activities, but will support organizations that conform to our grant requirements if their support for BDS is incidental or subsidiary to their significant programs."
"In other words, the New Israel Fund won't get too mad if organisations supported by them boycott Israeli settlements goods."
We bring this up chiefly to show that everything telegramsam does on this blog is in line with NIF policy. He can argue till he is blue in the face (halevay!) that he doesn't represent them. But the facts remain. Know where he is coming from, and where he would like us to go ...