January 22, 2015

In Uncategorized

Finkelstein comments:  

In a recent posting, Asad AbuKhalil ( writes:

“[Finkelstein] basically say[s] that BDS is in contradiction because on the one hand it claims that international law rules supreme but then refuses to endorse a two-state solution.  The only flaw in this argument is this: when did BDS say that it believes (like you) that international law rules supreme?  Who said that?”

Below I quote in full the 2005 official BDS Call, with my emphases.  I also quote from Omar Barghouti’s authoritative book, BDS: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights.  Although I am no longer a Maoist, I do believe Chairman Mao often gave sensible advice;  for example: “No investigation, no right to speak” (Selected Works, Volume III, p. 13).  In other words, if you haven’t a clue what you’re talking about, it’s prudent to shut up.


Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS

Palestinian Civil Society Calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel UNTIL IT COMPLIES WITH INTERNATIONAL LAW and Universal Principles of Human Rights

9 July 2005


One year after the historic Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which found Israel’s Wall built on occupied Palestinian territory to be illegal; Israel continues its construction of the colonial Wall with total disregard to the Court’s decision. Thirty eight years into Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Gaza Strip and the Syrian Golan Heights, Israel continues to expand Jewish colonies. It has unilaterally annexed occupied East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights and is now de facto annexing large parts of the West Bank by means of the Wall. Israel is also preparing – in the shadow of its lanned redeployment from the Gaza Strip – to build and expand colonies in the West Bank. Fifty seven years after the state of Israel was built mainly on land ethnically cleansed of its Palestinian owners, a majority of Palestinians are refugees, most of whom are stateless. Moreover, Israel’s entrenched system of racial discrimination against its own Arab-Palestinian citizens remains intact.


Given that, since 1948, hundreds of UN resolutions have condemned Israel’s colonial and discriminatory policies as illegal and called for immediate, adequate and effective remedies; and

Given that all forms of international intervention and peace-making have until now failed to convince or force Israel to comply with humanitarian law, to respect fundamental human rights and to end its occupation and oppression of the people of Palestine; and

In view of the fact that people of conscience in the international community have historically shouldered the moral responsibility to fight injustice, as exemplified in the struggle to abolish apartheid in South Africa through diverse forms of boycott, divestment and sanctions; and

Inspired by the struggle of South Africans against apartheid and in the spirit of international solidarity, moral consistency and resistance to injustice and oppression;

We, representatives of Palestinian civil society, call upon international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era. We appeal to you to pressure your respective states to impose embargoes and sanctions against Israel. We also invite conscientious Israelis to support this Call, for the sake of justice and genuine peace.

These non-violent punitive measures should be maintained until Israel meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law by:

  1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall
. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.


“The BDS Call, anchored in international law and universal principles of human rights, adopts a comprehensive rights-based approach, underlining the fact that for the Palestinian people to exercise its right to self-determination, Israel must end its three forms of injustice that infringe international law and Palestinian rights” (Barghouti, BDS, p. 6).