United Church, Boycott, and the Palestinian-Israeli Products

The United Church has been roundly criticized for its boycott of Israeli products produced in the occupied settlements in the West Bank of Palestine. The criticism has been manifold: how dare you criticize the victims of the holocaust, how dare you criticize this instance of malfeasance when others in the world are not criticized, et cetera.

Let me suggest some reasons for supporting this boycott.

Gaza ‘will not be livable by 2020’ – UN report.

Gaza tunnel trade squeezed by Egypt ‘crackdown’. Gaza depends on the smuggling of goods from Egypt to provide basics, like batteries.Israel blockades many goods, like cement and rebar.

Egypt troops step up campaign against Sinai militants. Question: why does this bother the Israelis?

Rachel Corrie: Court rules Israel not at fault for death
Rachel Corrie stands between an Israeli bulldozer and a Palestinian house on 16 March 2003 in the Rafah refugee camp in the Gaza Strip. Corrie was involved in a campaign to stop Palestinian homes in Gaza being demolished.
An Israeli court has ruled that the state of Israel was not at fault for the death of US activist Rachel Corrie, who was killed in the Gaza Strip by an Israeli army bulldozer in 2003.

Wikipedia: notice the bulldozer was about to demolish a Palestinian house, not clear brush and bombs as in today’s news.

A video taken at the time of Rachel Corrie’s death (plus quite a bit of narration).

So, while Israel is taking this action in Gaza, we are supposed to not-allow Israeli goods produced in the West Bank or Gaza to be identified and thus potentially discriminated against.

The United Church has, at least for now, decided differently. To quote,

The resolutions also single out Israeli settlements as a principal obstacle to peace in the region, call on Israel to suspend settlement expansion, and express regret for previously asking Palestinians to acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state.

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