Ah, Scotland, the land of the brave and of fried Mars Bars, Haggis, the Edinburgh Festival, Chivas Regal and passionate football teams.
It is now, also, the land that imposes anti-Jewish boycotts.
In 2009, West Dunbartonshire Council passed the following motion while Israel was defending its citizens from an onslaught of rocket attacks by Hamas from Gaza:
‘This Council deplores the loss of life in Palestine which now numbers well over 1,000. This Council also recognises the disproportionate force used by the IDF in Palestine and agrees to boycott all Israeli goods as a consequence. Officers should immediately cease the purchase of any goods we currently source, which were made or grown in Israel. Officers should also ensure we procure no new goods or produce from Israel until this boycott is formally lifted by WDC.’
Now, for example, books that are printed in Israel will not be taken by West Dunbartonshire libraries. Does this apply to books by Israeli Christians and Muslims, nearly 20% of Israel’s population, or does it only apply to books by Israeli Jews?
Funnily enough the boycott is not restrospective, which would then have entailed the council having to remove their computers; much of the hardware and software having been produced in Israel. But such is the hypocrisy of the modern-day Israel boycotter.
It is all so reminiscent of the hypocrisy of the likes of Mustafa Barghouti who proposes a worldwide boycott of Israel despite studying at an Israeli university.
Whatever the “loss of life” in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead (estimates vary considerably and many were Hamas terrorists) Israel was doing no different than what NATO forces are currently doing in Afghanistan and Pakistan; that is killing Taliban and Al Qaeda terrorists with the inevitable and tragic loss of civilians caught in the middle.
Jim Bollan, who proposed the original motion, said this in a recent exchange of emails:
“Hamas was elected and are freedom fighters alongside the Palestinians fighting an illegal occupation of Palestine by Israel.”
Would such “freedom fighters” include those Palestinians who showed off their blood-caked hands after they had just lynched two Israeli soldiers in Ramallah in 2000, or the two Palestinians that recently hacked to death the Fogel family, including a three month old baby, while they slept, or the Palestinians that shot dead a group of Israelis last August, including a pregnant woman, near Hebron or the many Palestinians queueing up to walk into Israeli restaurants to blow them sky high while families eat pizza?
Bollan should know that many thousands of innocent Israelis have been either murdered or left disabled by Palestinians over the years, but maybe he doesn’t wish to know. Either way you would never hear of a boycott of Palestinian produce or books.
And Bollan is now complaining that he is receiving contradictory emails with some claiming Israel was defending itself after an onslaught of 6,000 Hamas rockets while another claimed it was 8,000 and another said it was 26,000.
“Who to believe?,” Bollan cheekily asks.
Well, according to B’Tselem, Israel received 8031 attacks from Gaza between 2005 and 2008. Up to the end of Operation Cast Lead 19 Israeli civilians were killed by such attacks but the intent was for thousands to be killed. It is only because Israel builds shelters for its civilians, in contrast to Hamas which prefers making Qassam rockets, that many more weren’t killed.
So, incredibly, in 2011 we are back to boycotting just the Jews, albeit Israeli ones; proof that as a society we have not progressed, we just think we have.
I will now be carrying out my own boycott of Scotland. It will be fun. I will be studying the labels on all products I buy for the word “Scotland”. I won’t visit Scotland and I will encourage all those I know not to also.
Many Americans are already boycotting Scotland after the safe release of al-Megrahi, the Lockerbie Bomber, back to Libya.
And I will be happy in the knowledge that my boycott of Scotland will probably hurt me far less than if I boycotted Israel, when comparing what Israel has already given to the world in its short 63 years to what Scotland has.
In the meantime here are some email addresses that can be used to help escalate a boycott of Scotland until this iniquitous boycott is lifted: