While U.S. politicians have jumped over themselves to sanction Russia back to the Stone Age, widespread anti-BDS sentiment among politicians has advocates iced out of public debate.
By Joseph Gedeon | Politico | Mar 7, 2022
“But whereas the international community mobilized swiftly to confront Russia’s occupation of Ukraine, it has done very little to roll back Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, [and the] Golan Heights. It’s exactly this lack of any real accountability or constraint on Israel, that ultimately led to the BDS movement.”
— Khaled Elgindy, a senior fellow at the Middle East Institute
As the prospect of a Russian invasion into Ukraine was inching closer to reality, the U.S. took proactive steps with its allies to coordinate more concentrated sanctions against Moscow. And when the war erupted, the U.S. announced it was ready to impose stiffer sanctions, including freezing U.S. assets held by Russian banks, enforcing restrictions on high-tech imports and seizing oligarchs’ homes, planes and yachts.
The tough rhetoric and swift reprisals have been embraced by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, who have called for sanctions to decimate Russia’s economy. To some longtime advocates of the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement meant to target Israel’s economy amid bloody conflicts with Palestinians, those calls sound eerily familiar.
“We are watching at this moment a really horrific set of violations of international law and human rights in Ukraine, and we’re seeing an international response that is unified, robust and also completely hypocritical,” said Yousef Munayyer, a nonresident senior fellow at the Arab Center in Washington, D.C. “So it really shows that the issue is not that the tactics are illegitimate, [rather] a time-honored tactic that allows people in all parts of society to take a stance on issues of grave importance when it comes to human rights.”