Supporters of Israel can get the latest from Mossad on how to spread Zionist propaganda in their home countries at conferences like #DigiTell18. The red-haired chap wearing glasses behind the lady holding the sign looks very much like Luke Akehurst. Akehurst is a Blairite member of the UK Labour party, and like many on the right in UK Labour, he has politicised anti-semitism in order to attack Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters. Anti-semitism, in this case, means criticising Israel and/or supporting Palestinian rights.
One of Israel’s strategies to counter BDS is to promote the so-call ‘new’ anti-semitism by widening the definition of anti-semitism to include BDS. Once BDS against Israel is accepted as a form of anti-semitic racism it comes under section 18c of the The Racial Discrimination Act 1975…
“unlawful for a person to do an act, otherwise than in private, if the act is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people; and the act is done because of the race, colour or national or ethnic origin of the other person, or of some or all of the people in the group.”
This law has already been used to curb free-speech in Australia. In 2002 The Human Rights Commission found that certain opinions on the persecution of Jews in WW2 were offensive and therefore unlawful. Unfortunately, some of the attendees at the #DgiTell18 conference were Australian citizens. We know Israel uses the courts to harass Palestinians and their supporters (‘lawfare‘), so we should not be surprised if BDS promoters find themselves before the Australian Human Rights Commission for racially vilifying Jews, even if they are Jewish themselves.
This week the Israeli newspaper Haaretz confirmed something that The Electronic Intifada has been reporting for years.
The Mossad, reputedly Israel’s most ruthless and violent spy agency, is involved in the war against BDS, the nonviolent boycott, divestment and sanctions movement for Palestinian rights.
Israel’s strategic affairs minister Gilad Erdan leads Israel’s fight against BDS.
Erdan’s official diary for 2018, obtained through a freedom of information request, shows that he met with Mossad chief Yossi Cohen to discuss “the struggle against the boycott,” the paper revealed.
As The Electronic Intifada reported last year, a meeting between Erdan and the head of Mossad was previously confirmed on at least one other occasion – in 2016 – along with meetings with heads of other spy agencies.
Since 2015, the Ministry of Strategic Affairs has effectively been Israel’s anti-BDS ministry.
It is largely staffed by veterans of Israeli spy agencies, especially military intelligence.
Sima Vaknin-Gil, the civil servant responsible for leading the ministry’s day to day operations, worked for 20 years in Israel’s air force intelligence, and still holds her ranks as a reservist.
This ministry is involved in a global campaign of what one Israeli journalist has called “black ops” against Palestinian campaigners, human rights defenders and solidarity activists.
Despite plowing tens of millions of dollars into this war against civil society activists working for justice and equality, in private Israel’s anti-BDS forces admit their campaign is not working.
A secret report by a ministry-linked think tank in 2017 candidly admits to Israel’s failure to stem the “impressive growth” and “significant successes” of BDS. Obtained by The Electronic Intifada, the report states that, despite increasing anti-BDS spending by a factor of 20, “results remain elusive.”
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