Anti-Israeli groups such as the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign that are behind boycotting Tel Aviv have increased their activities at US universities, a new report says.
The Israel on Campus Coalition’s “Campus Trends Report” said the number of American campuses with anti-Israel activity soared 31.2 percent in the 2014-2015 academic year.
The BDS campaign encourages organizations and institutions such as universities and churches to divest from Israel until the fundamental rights of the Palestinians have been recognized.
Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) that are backing the BDS movement in the US are employing new strategies. The first group is on 150 campuses and the second one is on 14 campuses.
The report said the 2014-2015 academic year “saw an unprecedented increase in the number of SJP events that are co-sponsored by other campus groups.”
Some national organizations, including the American Friends Service Committee and Jewish Voice for Peace, also put weight behind the anti-Israel efforts on campuses, according to the report.
In July, Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton criticized growing anti-Israeli movements in the United States, saying they want to “isolate and delegitimize Israel.”
The former secretary of state called for suggestions to fight the BDS movement in a letter to Democratic donor Haim Saban and Jewish organization leaders.
“I know you agree that we need to make countering BDS a priority” and to “fight back against further attempts to isolate and delegitimize Israel,” she wrote.
“BDS seeks to punish Israel and dictate how the Israelis and Palestinians should resolve the core issues of their conflict,” she said.