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American Studies Association Calls for Boycott of Israeli Universities

“Critical discussions of Israel’s policies towards Palestine no longer taboo,” says David Lloyd, n English Professor at the University of California

By: Zak Edwards
Published: November 27th, 2013 in News » World
Supporters of the BDS movement against Israel

The latest resolution by the American Studies Association (ASA), which calls for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions, joins a growing bias against Israel’s ongoing conflict with Palestine, reports JTA.

At the annual ASA conference in Washington, members voted overwhelmingly in favour of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement (BDS) against Israeli academic institutions. The movement’s website claims their “nonviolent measures [are] similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era.”

The site then asserts that “Israel’s legalized system of racial discrimination meets the apartheid criteria as defined under normative international law.”

JTA reports that, at the conference, “a number of the speakers, particularly Palestinians, said the American Studies Association and the field it represents is a refuge from what they describe as an American society that is uninterested in their viewpoint,” a claim that counters established Palestinian biases in major American news outlets like the New York Times.

“The ASA’s open meeting was a clear indication that the time of fear and of the blockade on debate may be over — and that there is a new climate in which critical discussion of Israel’s policies towards Palestine will no longer be taboo,” said David Lloyd, an English Professor at the University of California, riverside, via Electronic Intifada.

The BDS movement will operate against Israeli universities and corporations that, according to English professor Steven Salaita, will “facilitate or profit from Israel’s occupation and other abuses of Palestinian rights.”

Related articles: BDS, Boycott Israel, American Studies Association, Jewish News, Apartheid, Israel News
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