New York, (Mondoweiss) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is directly involved in growing efforts to combat the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement, according to Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth.
Nahum Barnea, a leading Israeli commentator, reported June 25 that Netanyahu met with a small group of unnamed “Jewish millionaires” at the Israeli Presidential Conference last week in Jerusalem.
Netanyahu “sought to raise their money and use their connections for the war against the anti-Israel boycott movement”--a movement Barnea says is “arousing great interest in Western countries, leaving its mark on the academic system, on economic decisions made by business and political organizations and on the media.”
The details from Barnea are yet another indication of how seriously the Israeli establishment is taking the BDS movement. Netanyahu's desire to combat BDS comes about a month after Israeli businessmen warned the prime minister that without progress towards a two-state solution, foreign investments would be withheld and "no one" would "buy goods" from Israel.
And in a speech this week, Netanyahu "promised to implement the recommendations of [the Jewish People Policy Institute] with regards to countering international 'delegitimization' and boycott initiatives," as the Electronic Intifada's Ben White noted.