CEO of leading Jewish org denies there’s an occupation and calls Ben & Jerry’s chair ‘apologist for Hamas’

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William Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, speaking to the Jewish Broadcasting Service on July 26, 2021. (screenshot)
Unilever the focus of pressure from the American Jewish community to reverse Ben & Jerry’s decision to withdraw sales in the occupied territories.

By Philip Weiss |  Mondoweiss | Sept 7, 2021

Daroff spoke six weeks ago to the Jewish Broadcasting Service, but no media have quoted him; and he is such a powerful figure in the Jewish community that his remarks deserve notice.

In late July, Ben & Jerry’s announced that it would stop selling ice cream in the occupied Palestinian territories next year, and since then its parent company, Unilever, has come under a pressure campaign from Israel and its American mouthpieces to reverse the decision.

The Conference of Presidents of American Jewish Organizations, which comprises dozens of groups and calls itself the “voice of organized American Jewry,” has said the decision was “antisemitic” and warned Unilever that 33 states have laws aimed at penalizing the BDS campaign against Israel. The Conference said these states’ pension funds can divest from Unilever if it does not override the independent Ben & Jerry’s board.

William Daroff, the CEO of the Conference, goes further. He says there is no such thing as occupied territories. He says that the chair of the independent Ben & Jerry’s board is an “apologist for Hamas” who has put out “venomous hatred.” And he says that the “grownups” at Unilever can reverse the Ben & Jerry’s decision by “just snapping their fingers.”

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