BDS Bullying tactics are hollow victory

It took less than 48 hours for the BDS to do a complete turn-around over Shashi Naidoo.  On Sunday, Ms Naidoo was the devil incarnate, the target of multiple death threats for having dared to tweet comments supportive of Israel.  Now, having apologised for her ‘heresy’, she is suddenly a celebrity. Indeed,  the intention now is to set her up as a poster girl for the BDS movement.   Shashi Naidoo, a local television personality, took to Social Media over the weekend to express the true facts about the Israel-Palestinian conflict. 

Naidoo published a written apology on Instagram, where the hate-fest continued, being labelled as an “Apartheid Sympathizer”.  Following which she shared a video apology to the Muslim community, stating that “The apology I made today was very sincere, I can assure you of that. I have already received 10 death threats today and a lot of backlash.” 

If all this represents a victory for BDS, and for anti-Israel extremists in general, it is a decidedly hollow one. Actually, what it represents is a triumph of censorship over freedom of expression, a victory for those who resort to threats, insults and intimidation to silence those who express views in support of Israel.  The tactics of the “Hate lobby” merely show how false is their claim to be motivated by human rights concerns.  Really, what motivates them is naked hatred for Israel and a desire to bully other South Africans into going along with their radical agenda. Shashi Naidoo is the latest victim of this bigoted vendetta. Unless ordinary South Africans take a stand and declare, “Enough!”, she will not be the last.

Ms Naidoo has expressed a willingness to learn more about the Middle East conflict.  We encourage her on this endeavour.  She certainly won’t learn anything but emotive rhetoric and half-truths from the BDS, and we hope that she won’t allow herself to be exploited by an obviously one sided agenda.

Issued by the SA Zionist Federation and SA Jewish Board of Deputies. 

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The SAJBD was heartened by an email we received from Mr Solly Hattia, a member of the Muslim community.

“My experiences living amongst a Jewish community.  My first engagement with Jewish people began when the company I worked for merged with a Jewish family-owned-business and to whom I was then to report to as my new CEO.  My first encounter with my new Boss, Ronnie Norwitz, was on a Friday when he came down to my office at around 12 looked at his watch and said “Solly aren't you going to be late for your Friday prayer?”  Never before in all my years of working, had I ever had this courtesy from a boss!  His other interesting comment on my return from the Mosque was all ways, "Friday's are good days ".  Ronnie would always say this with the gesture of a clenched fist swinging his arm through the air as if he was going to hit someone.  He always greeted me with a smile and a kind word.  Braai days at work you would find him at my fire naturally. 

THE REAL PROBLEM WITH IQBAL JASSAT’S LATEST SCREED

At the biennial conference of the SA Jewish Board of Deputies Gauteng Council next week, Gauteng Jewry will have the first opportunity of engaging directly with President Ramaphosa since his assumption of the presidency earlier this year. Rather than delivering the traditional keynote address, Mr Ramaphosa will be exchanging views with eminent business leader Stephen Koseff on challenges currently facing South Africa, what the Jewish community is (or could be) doing to help address them and how each sees the future of the country and its people. In other words, it is not about what this country should be doing to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian, or any other foreign policy issue, but is framed as being a South African conversation between fellow South Africans on South African issues.