Israeli Academics Slammed for Promoting Boycott

YERUSHALAYIM -
FILE -- A view of the Hebrew University campus in Yerushalayim. (Nati Shohat /Flash90)
FILE — A view of the Hebrew University campus in Yerushalayim. (Nati Shohat /Flash90)

The Knesset is about to launch an inquiry into the role of Israeli professors in the promotion of the academic boycott of their own country, Israel Hayom reported on Sunday.

Yisrael Beytenu MK Oded Forer called for an emergency meeting of the Knesset Education Committee following allegations by the right wing Im Tirtzu that 20 Israeli academics have been urging the American Anthropological Association to boycott Israel.

In a recent letter, the Israeli lecturers, some of whose salaries are tax-funded, wrote that “The call for a boycott is the result of a terrifying occupation, which is ruining the lives and well-being of the Palestinian people. This is the aftermath of a policy that resembles the one that was practiced by the notorious apartheid regime in South Africa.”

Forer declared that “it is preposterous for Israeli academic staff members to turn against the very institutions that pay their salaries and to invest their effort and time into harming the state of Israel and its standing while enjoying salaries paid by institutions that are funded by Israeli taxpayers.”

“The involvement of the Israeli academics in encouraging a boycott against Israel is subversive and constitutes an effort to undermine the state of Israel,” he said.

In addition, he rejected the explanation offered that such behavior is legal and acceptable as long as they represent their personal opinions and do not make use of their official titles in political matters.