Shurat HaDin, ECAJ disagree on skinning the BDS cat

November 3, 2013 by J-Wire
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The Executive Council of Australian Jewry has criticised Israeli advocacy organisation Shurat HaDin for bringing a legal action against those responsible for barring an Israeli academic from visiting Sydney University effectively boycotting Israel. Shurat Hadin has answered the criticism exclusively to J-Wire.

Akiva Hamilton

Akiva Hamilton

Shurat HaDin’s Akiva Hamilton told J-Wire:  ‘There is more than one way to confront BDS and our efforts are complements those of  the ECAJ.

 I think its fairly obvious now that the Shurat HaDin approach not only:
a) generates more and better of what the ECAJ thinks is important: negative publicity of BDS and positive of Israel (e.g. Hebrew University article on the front page of The Australian and hilarious ridicule of BDS in the Australian Financial Review
but it can also:
Peter Wertheim

Peter Wertheim

b) stop the hard core BDS activists like Lynch who will never be discouraged by bad publicity; and

c) have an impact beyond the relatively Israel friendly environment of Australia.
These latter two can never be achieved by the ECAJ approach.”
In an article recently published on J-Wire, The Executive Council of Australian Jewry stated: “The ECAJ believes that the most appropriate and effective way to combat the boycott campaign is to expose its deceptive and sometimes racist rhetoric, methods and aims public scrutiny. In our view, attempts to suppress the campaign through litigation are inappropriate and likely to be counter-productive. It is for this reason that the ECAJ has had no involvement in the action brought by Shurat HaDin and will continue to fight the boycott campaign through public discourse. If any individuals believe they have been adversely affected by racially discriminatory policies and practices of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies they are entitled to have their day in court, but we are opposed to litigation if it is pursued merely as a political tactic.”



16 Responses to “Shurat HaDin, ECAJ disagree on skinning the BDS cat”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    The ECAJ has has ample time to realise that its efforts against BDS have failed. The “expert” advice it is acting on is faulty; positioning the Jewish community on what is most acceptable to the general community does not change anything. To change attitudes one must be proactive and if that causes some tension, so be it. The ECAJ is leading from behind. Further, to denounce Shurat HaDin’s actions is counterproductive because it grants the BDS mob legitimacy. Politically, it is insane. The ECAJ’s actions are those of the ghetto leadership who were so terrified of Nazi reprisals that they did everything to stop Jewish resistance. Apart from the terror of a spineless leadership, the other objection to the ECAJ’s petulant outburst, is that it only reacts to people acting or saying anything that points to its ineptitude, which is taken as an attack on their egos.

    • Zvi Saita says:

      Paul, there is nothing wrong even for the ECAJ to have an ego, but that “ego” should be in sync with their mandate, as representatives of a whole community and not of their own sellect incompetence.
      It is, as you pointed out, astounding that of all “people” ECAJ should oppose ANYTHIN that in genuinely in favour of deffending the Jewish community.
      As ECAJ leadership isolates itself from the cooomunity they should represent, by comming out with incredibly absurd “reasons”, one wonders WHERE is the ACTUAL community in cases like this. By virtue of some “arrangements” the leadership of ECAJ, and for that matters all other organisations of this kind, can act in deiyance of its mandate. There must be a way whereby the grass root community can intervene and express its objections when the situations demand it. Otherwise, ECAJ will continue like this with damaging impunity.

  2. ben eleijah says:

    Let them try the 2000 persons who have impleaded themselves as co-defendants. Trying Jeff Halper (Israeli) will shine the spotlight on Israel’s policies.

    • Sam says:

      Your ignorance is showing pal. This is nothing to do with shining the spotlight on Israel’s policies.

      “It is lawful to criticise Israel’s policies.
      It is not lawful to boycott Israeli people and businesses because of disagreement with those policies.”

      That’s the issue here

      • ben eleijah says:

        The boycott is against Israeli interests as was done with South Africa. Let them try the 2000 defendants and prove it is racist.

        • Zvi Saita says:

          Sam, mate
          let this clown and his mob enjoy the “boycott”. Latest I heard Israel is doing some 4%-5% yearly growth in a most complex type economy, manufacturing etc. Practically speaking there is no boycot as such. Dedicated antisemites would not touch anything Jewish anyway and decent people – as oposed to the antisemites, that includes, of course “our” ben eleijah – will support, buy Israeli goods, millions will visit the Holy Land, we and our friends will be happy and prosperous.

          (Just wait & see how the same jester without a court will retort: “me no antisemite !!! )

  3. David says:

    Whatever one’s views of whether Shurat HaDin or ECAJ argument is correct, it is “inappropriate and likely to be counter-productive” for the ECAJ to have criticised the Shurat HaDin PUBLICLY. What on earth were they thinking?

    This sort of disagreement should have been dealt with by picking up the phone, not in the public domain.

    Shows very poor political strategic judgement. With friends like that…

  4. Henry says:

    While not criticising the ECAJ’s approach to the problem, it does seem that they have not had a great deal of success in combatting BDS and other similar organisations.

    Perhaps a more aggressive approach is the way to go. I am sure that the judiciary are up to the task.

    • Sam says:

      It is way past time we got some people in leadership positions with some backbone and spunk. The ECAJ once again is being a dhimmi

  5. Rachel says:

    The Hebrew University article on the front page of The Australian and the article ridiculing BDS in the Australian Financial Review had nothing to do with the Shurat Hadin court case – did not mention it. That omission should tell us something about how sympathetic (or not) an Australian audience is likely to be towards this litigation.

    • Rami says:

      Neither articles would have appeared were it not for the Sheraton Hardin case.

    • Zvi Saita says:


      what has “sympathetic ….Australian audiences ” to do with the merits of a court case !!!
      This is not an episode of “X Factor ” or “Dancing with the Stars”.

  6. Otto Waldmann says:

    C’mon Peter, mate, how can you say that political tactics are wrong ??!!!
    Whate is it ECAJ are supposed to practice if not political tactics day and night ??!!

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