Divestment at:
  Illegal Activity
Breaking Myths
Online Forum
News Archive
About Us
Contact Us
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
British Vote for Academic Boycott of Israel, Again.
British academics approve the modern equivalent of book burnings

    The University and College Union, a British academic association, voted in favor of an academic boycott of Israel, which is essentially the modern day equivalent of book burnings.

    Although the resolution, see below, does not explicitly use the word 'boycott', it still calls for a boycott by the fact that it calls upon its members to questions the "appropriateness of continued educational links with Israeli academic institutions" and it calls for "twinning arrangements and other direct solidarity with Palestinian institutions."

    Britain's AUT, the Association of University Teachers, previously called for a boycott of Israel, so this is nothing new for the British, but it does reinforce the standing of the 120,000 member organization, as it passed overwhelmingly.

    Fred Taub, the President of Boycott Watch responded "It is very dangerous when teachers decide to boycott ideas, which is essentially what an academic boycott is. Teachers, professors and researchers advance society when they exchange ideas - this boycott, therefore, says British academics would see people die rather than share medical information which may lead to cures for diseases, for example. It is a sad day for the world and society in general."

    The following is the text of the UCU resolution calling for the academic boycott of Israel:

25 - Composite: Palestine and the occupation University of Brighton - Eastbourne, University of Brighton - Grand Parade, University of East London Docklands, National Executive Committee Congress notes the

1. continuation of illegal settlement, killing of civilians and the impossibility of civil life, including education

2. humanitarian catastrophe imposed on Gaza by Israel and the EU

3. apparent complicity of most of the Israeli academy

4. legal attempts to prevent UCU debating boycott of Israeli academic institutions; and legal advice that such debates are lawful Congress affirms that

5. criticism of Israel or Israeli policy are not, as such, anti-semitic;

6. pursuit and dissemination of knowledge are not uniquely immune from their moral and political consequences;

Congress resolves that

7. colleagues be asked to consider the moral and political implications of educational links with Israeli institutions, and to discuss the occupation with individuals and institutions concerned, including Israeli colleagues with whom they are collaborating;

8. UCU widely disseminate the personal testimonies of UCU and PFUUPE delegations to Palestine and the UK, respectively;

9. the testimonies will be used to promote a wide discussion by colleagues of the appropriateness of continued educational links with Israeli academic institutions;

10. UCU facilitate and encourage twinning arrangements and other direct solidarity with Palestinian institutions;

11. Ariel College, an explicitly colonising institution in the West Bank, be investigated under the formal Greylisting Procedure.

© 2007 Divestment Watch