Two Republican Congressmen, Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) have introduced the “Boycott Our Enemies, Not Israel Act,” which seeks to push back against the campaign employed by the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
BDS, which advocates for a boycott of Jewish imports from the State of Israel, has been described by some as a virulently anti-Semitic movement, due to its singling out of Israel alone and complete disregard for other nations.
The BDS movement has been primarily advocated for by Islamist and leftist groups on American college campuses, and backed by radical college professors. The movement faults Israel entirely for any issues concerning the Israel-Palestinian dispute, and lays no blame on the Palestinian population for unrest in the region.
The founder of the BDS movement, Omar Barghouti, received his education at Tel Aviv University in Israel. He was born in Qatar and raised in Egypt, but considers himself a Palestinian.
Barghouti has been accused of promoting racial bias and having anti-Semitic leanings. He once declared that he would not let a “white person” lecture him on any topics, professor Steven Plaut has reported.
Congressman Lamborn released the following statement in introducing the pro-Israel resolution:
Today, we introduced H.R. 1572 to thwart efforts by Palestinian organizations to pressure different corporations, companies and educational institutions to boycott, divest, and sanction Israel. Recently the Palestinian Authority declared a boycott against Israeli goods, depriving their own population of most basically needed products. Threats of similar actions emerged out of the European Union. These attacks and the falsehoods being spread about Israel are harmful to any honest effort to bring peace to the region.
My bill will require that any prospective contractors with the U.S. Government will certify that they are not taking part in any boycott against Israel. The bill also includes penalties for false certifications, including the ability to ban companies that breach its parameters from doing future business with the U.S. Government. Our government business practices should not play any role in harming our greatest ally in the Middle East.
Israel is the only true democracy in the Middle East, a place where all men and women enjoy freedom regardless of their faith or ethnicity. In fact Jewish owned factories and companies in Israel and in Judea and Samaria are among the chief employers of the Palestinian community. Palestinian workers get equal pay and equal treatment and enjoy benefits.
Congressman DeSantis added:
The BDS movement represents a disgraceful attempt to single out Israel for punitive treatment. This bill sends a strong message that we will not allow taxpayer funds to go to contractors who participate in this contemptible charade. It is imperative that the United States send a strong message of condemnation by refusing to fund participating contractors using taxpayer money.