Written byÂ uscpr
USCPRÂ Executive Director Yousef Munayyer is quoted in anÂ op-ed by Nada EliaÂ forÂ MondoweissÂ on the still-unconstitutional nature of the recently amendedÂ Israel Anti-Boycott Act.Â The draconian legislation seeks to impose fines andÂ criminal penalties, and deny government loans to corporations refusing to do business with corporations in illegal Israeli settlements. ItÂ infringes on the First Amendment rightÂ to boycott and seeks toÂ legitimize Israelâs settlements.
âFrom the day the Israel Anti-Boycott Act was introduced into Congress, we have been sounding the alarm over the unconstitutional nature of this bill aimed at stifling dissent against Israelâs brutal policies toward Palestinians. Since last April, we have been encouraged to see a growing number of people push back against these repressive efforts and in defense of our right to boycott, a tactic that is used byÂ manyÂ social justice and freedom movements.
Senator Cardin has been struggling to pass this legislation, first sneaking it into other legislation before it was ruled out ofÂ procedure, and most recently by making amendments in an attempt to buy the consent of those with free speech concerns. Those efforts fall flat and, as the ACLU has made clear, there is no way to make a bill that is designed to repress a political viewpoint compatible with the First Amendment.
This entire episode highlights the fundamental conflict between the oppressive policies of the Israeli state and the values and freedoms Americans aspire to. We hope that moving forward, our elected representatives would defend the latter instead of the former.â
Opinion/Analysis 03/06/18Â Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson On the US, Iran and Israel
Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip, and continues into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.