The American Studies Association leadership announced, Wednesday, that its National Council has unanimously approved a resolution submitted by the Academic and Community Activism Caucus to endorse the Palestinian call for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions.“We believe that the ASA’s endorsement of a boycott is warranted, given US military and other support for Israel; Israel’s violation of international law and UN resolutions; the documented impact of the Israeli occupation on Palestinian scholars and students; the extent to which Israeli institutions of higher education are a party to state policies that violate human rights; and the support of such a resolution by many members of the ASA,” the council’s announcement said.
The council is still seeking the support of the group’s entire body. Members have until December 16 to cast their vote.
The resolution is very likely to pass given the amount of support it had at the conference, however if the majority of voters reject the decision, it will be withdrawn.
According to the announcement, the decision is limited to a refusal by the Association to enter into ‘formal collaborations with Israeli academic institutions, or with scholars who are expressly serving as representatives or ambassadors of those institutions, or on behalf of the Israeli government, until Israel ceases to violate human rights and international law.’
The report added that the resolution ‘does not apply to individual Israeli scholars engaged in ordinary forms of academic exchange, including conference presentations, public lectures at campuses, or collaboration on research and publication.’
The Council also recognizes that individual members will act according to their convictions on these complex matters.