The Sydney University branch of the national academic union has overturned a previous vote in support of a “broad discussion” around endorsing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
Approximately 120 members attended a meeting on Wednesday at which the General Secretary of the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU), Grahame McCulloch, spoke against “a Union-sponsored debate on the merits of the BDS.”
“At a time when universities and trade unions are under siege from the Abbott Government, an NTEU Branch as important as the University of Sydney cannot afford the division and fruitless procedural wrangling that has been generated by this ill-conceived general meeting decision,”
he wrote in an email before the meeting.
Sydney University NTEU members had voted to support a debate about BDS at a branch meeting on May 15. The vote was overruled by the union’s executive branch committee the following week, triggering outrage from pro-BDS members of the union, which led to the resignation of branch Vice President Damien Cahill and the eventual involvement of the national General Secretary.
On Wednesday, members voted 68-56 against a debate on BDS in the branch, overturning the vote on May 15, which is understood to have passed almost unanimously with around 35 NTEU members in attendance.
That follows from an article on 4 June by Sydney University’s Jumping Jake Lynch himself, Mr BDS Australia, four years running, where the pitifully losing case was put by him. Read it if you must but here’s a fair summary.
Jumping Jake and his mates simply can not understand why they and Palestine are not at the centre of everything for everyone, that the role of Israel and the Jews in the scheme of things really does not warrant the attention they give it and that on its own is creepy enough without all this other stuff. That’s about it really. I don’t believe I’m being too harsh.
BDS is racism. There is no doubt about it. If you look it straight in the eye you can actually see the spit and the snarl. You either know what is meant by that or you do not. That antizionism is antisemitism is a truth that really should not need explanation by this stage of this old and sad game. Indeed antisemitism is the lowest form of racism as some one on one of these threads has noted.
BDS is intellectually contemptible. It relies on a sleight of hand that allow its proponents to avoid saying exactly where they stand especially about the existentialist stench that overhangs the whole stage. Avoid even thinking about it really. Like most radical leftist and other lethal campaigns it is designed to give all the wiggle room needed to keep the populist appeal about “occupation” and “settlements” strong while dodging wedges and pain that might flow from the knowledge that this is essentially just another racist and violent movement from a political culture that is steeped in brutal bigotry and little else.
BDS is an exception. Getting them to admit that they stand for the destruction of Israel as the sovereign Jewish state is beyond boring. They squish and flap around like a flounder on a rock.
It’s as if BDS and its urgers in the universities and the fringe parties are so ashamed of the only end game they could rationally have in mind that they have to hide it in the papers in the attic like a dirty family secret.
Lets face the truth here. This mob has always had a problem with Jews, Zionism and Israel. At least since the days of Marx and Trotsky . Not to mention Stalin.
Universities have always harboured academics who were antisemitic or otherwise racist. At times it has reached fever pitch. The idea of gas chambers to put down the genetically inferior, including races, first came from leading US scientists of the influential eugenics movement in the 1920’s.
By the 1930’s these various schools of thought were dripping from university balustrades from Boston to Sydney in one guise or another. Something like BDS is now only with a different kind of Nazi in the background. .
By then the boycotts in the universities had well set in.
It is likely that the incidence of anti- Israelism and antisemitism has always been much higher among academics than it is in the general population. In Europe this has been proven. It is a curious phenomenon. It says much.
Boycotts are about attacks on people because of who they are perceived to be. To excuse an affront to an individual by asserting that it was really an act against the group to which she is perceived to be a member, whatever group,… institution, nation, race… whatever … is the oldest and glibbest line in bigotry.
Very soon there will be an allegation that the “Zionists” are behind this big BDS fail in Sydney. BDS has been “silenced” at this university they will say. Mark my words. They will say this. They always do.
The truth is the opposite. The more talk the better I say. Everything is an opportunity to educate. The problem for BDS is that it does not bear much scrutiny. A racist movement, a catastrophic failure in its impact on events as it was always certain to be, bullying, astonishingly hypocritical, at times threatening, at times comical, always venal and capricious, especially when it attacks artists and musicians, and with a message so thin, flash and dopey it makes the Gays for Sharia Mardi Gras float look like the Next Big Thing.
No wonder they are ashamed of themselves.
That’ll help the Palestinians.