HRC Research Analyst Jake Beaumont affirms that Canada was right to condemn the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement in a letter published in the Daily Gleaner today:
Canada’s Ottawa Protocol dictates that “singling Israel out for selective condemnation and opprobrium — let alone denying its right to exist or seeking its destruction — is discriminatory and hateful, and not saying so is dishonest.”
Legitimate criticism of Israel in itself is not anti-Semitic, and like any country in the world, criticism serves to keep governments in check to serve the public’s and nations best interests. The Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement (BDS) however, is and should not be considered a form of legitimate criticism, as the root of the organization itself seeks to dismantle Israel, rather than genuinely wanting to better it.
BDS calls for a one-state solution, and the “right of return” of millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants, an action which would destroy Israel demographically.
Instead of pushing for a two-state solution, BDS and its leader Omar Barghouti, only hinder the peace process by encouraging leaders not to participate in peace plans, while calling for Israel’s demise as a democratic state. Bluntly speaking, a one state solution and “right of return” would only lead to another Arab-majority state, and as evidenced by other Arab states, this would lead to the end of Israel’s democracy, and the beginning of a dictatorial state.
Being that Canada is a democratic country, it’s our obligation to support other democracies. Since Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, it has never been more important to recognize its right to exist, and to reaffirm strong allegiant ties with the land in a world where terrorism is ever increasing.
Supporting BDS is not a criminal action as BDS supporters have the right to espouse their views, but so too does the government of Canada have the right to condemn the movement for what it is, a hateful and bigoted campaign waged against the Jewish people and Jewish state exclusively.