EU Label Israeli Products in Clear Antisemitic Move
In November 2016 the European Union approved a measure labeling Jewish-made goods from Judea and Samaria, East Jerusalem and the Golan in a clear Antisemtic move.
Prior to the guidelines being approved official representatives of the State of Israel, as well as initiatives from the U.S Congress and Senate, called upon the EU to abandon the proposed move due to its discriminatory nature and clear sign of Antisemitism.
In the bipartisan letter by Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), a Republican presidential candidate, and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), signed by 36 senators to Federica Mogherini, vice president of the European Commission Senator Cruz expressed his deep concern over the move.
"As allies, elected representatives of the American people, and strong supporters of Israel, we urge you not to implement this labeling policy, which appears intended to discourage Europeans from purchasing these products and promote a de-facto boycott of Israel, a key ally and the only true democracy in the Middle East. We believe strongly that these efforts are unwarranted, dangerous, and damaging to the prospects of a negotiated solution to this conflict".
The House letter, led by U.S. Reps. Douglas Lamborn (R-Colo.) and Randy Weber (R-Texas), was also signed by 36 lawmakers.
The letter stated that: "As members of the United States Congress we are concerned that such measures will undermine decades-long American efforts to achieve a bilateral negotiated peace accord between Israel and the Palestinians." The EU's guidelines would, "constitute the de-facto boycotting of Israel, its economy and commodities, due to the burden on importers to apply and adhere to them."
Both letters were initiated by the ILF in corporation with the Zionist Organization of America. This initiative is part of the strategic efforts of the ILF to take a proactive stance to defend the State of Israel from attacks aimed at de-legitimizing it.
Yifa Sega, Director of the ILF stated: "This move will constitute a major victory for the BDS movement which initiated and orchestrated this whole effort. BDS hides behind a cleverly devised marketing tool masquerading as protection of human right but in fact aims to indiscriminately violate an entire population's right to earn a living, receive education and culture, and even exist. This is Antisemitism "in sheep's clothing" and the EU must not enable it."
This move was intended to impose more diplomatic and economic pressure on Israel during a period of regional instability and is tantamount to boycotting Israel.
Although it was clear that the EU had no intention of reconsidering its decision, the actions of the ILF and its partners in itself are important in further raising international support for the State of Israel in the face of continued attempts to undermine its legitimacy.