31 May 2006

NATFHE boycott and blacklist of Israelis

I have strenuously avoided commenting on the NATFHE boycott and blacklist of Israelis, partly in the hope that it wouldn'’t pass and because so many other blogs do a much better job of commenting and analysing the arguments.

Still, NATFHE passed the motion and I am left wondering what it actually achieves?

Does it help the Palestinians one iota? No. Will it change Israeli government policy? No

So who will benefit from this motion? 1) I suspect some ex-student radicals with more inclination to posture than think. 2) The extreme right will be overjoyed at the "“lecturers taking a stand against the Zionist entity"”, etc

All very predictable and troublesome, but is there a ray of hope?

Probably, it seems that some academics will make a conscience effort to strengthen links with Israeli academics and hopefully with their Palestinian counterparts, examples such as the Olive Tree project should be expanded upon not curtailed.


SnoopyTheGoon said...

It is really amazing how some people could justify senseless acts like this one. And you are right - aside of further alienation of the "peacenicks" in Israel, this resolution will not help anyone.

What bothers me more is the unblinking way NATFHE approved a McCartheist (sp?) measure like this. See for example this quote from Guardian:

...said Tom Hickey, a philosophy lecturer from the University of Brighton, member of the union's national executive committee and proposer of the motion. "Turning a blind eye to what an Israeli colleague thinks [sic!] about the actions of their government is a culpable blindness."

I thinks Orwell would be proud of Mr. Hickey as a living proof of his dire predictions.

Beast from the Middle East said...

You raise some valid points. Though the teacher's union is free to preach what it wants to preach. Will peacenkids in Israeli universities be affected by this boycott?