I know many people are using the BDS issue as a mark against Tulsi Gabbard and, considering the defense I posted of her, I am surprised I have not gotten more blowback myself.. yet.
First off, let me state that I am in favor of BDS, personally. If I find a product which states, “product of Israel” I will not purchase it. I abhor Haim Saban. One thing you should realize is that Haim Saban is a major funding source for TYT. So, if you claim to support BDS yet watch TYT, you’re deluding yourself. Note that he does NOT fund the Jimmy Dore Show.
However, I will not go to the extent of memorizing or carrying a list of companies that sell products in Israel. That’s just petty.
I did read and understand that the creator of the BDS movement is against the existence of the Israeli state. I strenuously object to the wording of HR246, which conflates the Israeli state with the Jewish religion, which is a false equivalency.
No matter how we can try to educate people we will deal with political forces, including the corporate media, intentionally distorting any criticism of the Israeli state into an attack on the Jewish religion. We know this and there is no denying it. We understand that Israel is an abusive, genocidal rogue government and majority populace. We know they will continue to attempt to completely eradicate the Palestinian people and the Muslim population in the Middle East by any means possible.
Let’s make this clear. The two state solution is the only solution which is viable. If there were a one state solution, Israel will control that state by any brutal means possible. Nearly every government in the United Nations has recognized the existence of the state of Palestine, except for the US and Israel. Even the UK has recognized the Palestinian state.
While I can publicly state that I support BDS, the situation is different for elected officials like Tulsi. She literally took the only reasonable course she could take on the issue. She supported HR246 because of the points raised in it. Considering the fact that the creator of BDS advocates for the elimination of the Israeli state, no elected official could possibly endorse the BDS movement publicly and maintain office. Yet if you read all of HR246, the bill itself advocates for the right of Americans to protest. In addition, Tulsi cosponsored HR496, which endorses the rights of Americans to participate in boycotts as a means of civil protest.
All this stated, it is a travesty that 27 states have laws regarding BDS specifically. Most of those states read exactly as a red state list. However, CO and CA are also on that list. We cannot deny that AIPAC is far too powerful in this country and those who support Israeli rights over Palestinian rights should absolutely be shamed. No state should have laws impacting the employment of an individual for engaging in political protest against another country. This is absolutely an infringement of our freedom of speech.
One should note that Hawaii is NOT on the list of states with laws against BDS.
Yet I will state that I criticize Tulsi for seeming to overstate US/Israeli friendship, I recognize that she is consistently in favor of a two state solution. She absolutely needs to be stronger on her statements for Palestinian rights. My view is that she should visit Gaza and see the conditions for herself with a film crew to document it. Considering her history, I believe she would be the candidate most likely to do exactly that and go against the status quo on the subject. Perhaps if enough of her supporters write to her office on the matter, she would take steps in that direction. All WE can do is try, right?
No matter what, we have to understand the issues involved and educate others. On both sides of this issue there are extremists intent on destroying the opposing side. Any effective elected official or candidate has to strive for a balance in their approach. An unbalanced and extremist criticism will not help anything.
Personally, I feel that the US should cease all monetary support of Israel in addition to an arms embargo until they engage in productive peace talks which include restoring rights and territory to Palestine. Then force Israel to do the same with Syria. Then question why we were ever giving them money at all.