In an article for Haaretz, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu has called for an international boycott of the nation of Israel.
Tutu, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in the struggle to end apartheid in South Africa writes:
The withdrawal of trade with South Africa by multinational corporations with a conscience in the 1980s was ultimately one of the key levers that brought the apartheid state – bloodlessly – to its knees. Those corporations understood that by contributing to South Africa’s economy, they were contributing to the retention of an unjust status quo.
Those who continue to do business with Israel, who contribute to a sense of “normalcy” in Israeli society, are doing the people of Israel and Palestine a disservice. They are contributing to the perpetuation of a profoundly unjust status quo.
Those who contribute to Israel’s temporary isolation are saying that Israelis and Palestinians are equally entitled to dignity and peace.
Ultimately, events in Gaza over the past month or so are going to test who believes in the worth of human beings.
In the essay, Tutu said he has condemned the Palestinians who are firing rockets into Israel, but added “we must be very clear that the people of Palestine have every right to struggle for their dignity and freedom.”
The Executive Council of the Episcopal Church, meeting in February 2013, reaffirmed Resolution B019, passed at the 2012 General Convention, which calls, among other things, fo positive investment in the West Bank and Gaza “as a necessary means to create a sound economy and a sustainable infrastructure” in the Palestinian Territories.” (Download the resolution.)
What are our thoughts on this complex subject?