American Anthropological Association rejects anti-BDS proposal


American Anthropological Association members on Dec. 5 voted down a proposed resolution opposing the academic boycott of Israel, formally known as the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

The vote on the motion took place at the association’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C. Out of the 700 attendees who showed up to vote, only 52 voted in favor of the resolution.

Paula G. Rubel, professor emerita at Barnard College and Columbia University and the outgoing president of the American Anthropological Association’s Association of Senior Anthropologists, was the lead sponsor of the resolution, which stated: “a resolution supporting a boycott of Israeli academic institutions is negative in its aims, while this resolution is positive in its content…be it resolved that the American Anthropological Association supports an immediate resumption of peace talks involving all parties, and not the negativity of a boycott which would not achieve anything.”

The votes comes a year after the American Studies Association approved a resolution endorsing BDS and last month’s passage of a Middle East Studies Association proposal that allows its members to support the BDS movement.

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  1. Hats off to the American Anthropological Association. BDS seeks an unlimited right of return that would necessarily result in the end of Israel as a Jewish state. And, BDS seeks to cause economic harm to Israeli Jews in order attain that objective.

    Of course, BDS opponents do themselves no favors if their opposition to BDS is not accompanied by strong support for a truly viable two-state solution. Opposition to a two-state solution harms Israel’s long-term interests more than any BDS advocacy.


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