| Unlike universities, where highly publicized
petitions are often the tools the divest-from-Israel movement uses to draw
attention to their cause, municipalities can be unwittingly drafted into this
conflict by appealing to a small set of elected representatives.
with divest-from-Israel activities in other forums, the goal is the same: to
get a local organization (in this case a city or town) to lend its name to an
effort to both punish the Jewish state and isolate it as the most egregious
human-rights abuser on the planet, on par with the Apartheid government of
South Africa in the 1980s. The divest-from-Israel movement's vocabulary, rife
with Apartheid analogies, is testament to this strategy.
cities and towns have retirement accounts that may invest internationally, or
invest in defense contractors or other US companies that do business with the
Jewish state, divest-from-Israel movement has many opportunities to find a
"hook" to reel in a municipality, by claiming that such holdings represent a
city or town's "investment" in the Israeli side of the Israeli-Palestinian
dispute and calling for divestment as a means to "level the playing field."
Fortunately, such activity can be halted by local representatives
becoming informed about the Middle East dispute and the true nature of the
divest-from-Israel movement as just another arm of the propaganda war against
To date, the city of Somerville in Massachusetts serves as an
example of how close the divest-from-Israel movement came to success, and how
citizen opposition stopped their activity in its tracks. This section of
DivestmentWatch provides information on Somerville's experience to help
activists in other cities and towns deal with similar activities in their
story of Somerville's success in turning back a divest-from-Israel
SomervilleMEjustice.com - A Web site established to battle
the divest-from-Israel campaign in Somerville
- The Somerville Divestment Project's own Web site
Resources - Tools to help you.