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US Student Considers Taking BDS Detention Case to Israel's Supreme Court After Judge Rejects Appeal


US Student Considers Taking BDS Detention Case to Israel's Supreme Court After Judge Rejects Appeal

Julia Conley, staff writer

After her legal challenge to end her detention was rejected by an Israeli district court on Friday, academics and activists pledged their support on Friday for Lara Alqasem, the 22-year-old U.S. graduate student who has been held for 10 days by Israel over accusations she has supported the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement that demands rights and freedom for Palestinians.


If she support BDS, how can she choose to study in Israel? Doesn’t every dollar she spends there go against the concept of BDS?


And israels war on the global BDS movement just gets more hilarious and bizarre. An Israel court has ordered two New Zealand women to pay NZ$18,000 in damages for harming the “artistic welfare” of three poor little Israeli teenagers after the pop star Lorde cancelled a planned performance in Tel Aviv. The two NZ women, like so many others, simply wrote a letter urging Lorde to cancel her concert in Tel Aviv. According to NZ legal experts “Israel has no right to police the political opinions of people across the world”. Pathetic little kitty liter box that israel claiming their laws are above all others.


Actually, it’s not all that funny. In the U.S., being affiliated with BDS can lead to lost jobs, marginalization in the media (including “progressive media”) and having basic human and constitutional rights illegalized by many state legislatures and the U.S. Congress.



Wow, Lara Alqasem, graduate student wants to study law at the Hebrew University. Apparently Israel has no laws----but they do have a whole lot of prejudices.


Not to mention, someone who really is, genetically, Semitic being accused of anti-Semitism by not-so genetically Semitic people, because she is standing up for her genetically Semitic people. And she is broad-minded enough to wish to study in Israel, a country about as narrow-minded as you can get. Crazy! - as we used to say.


More than 575,000 Iraqi children died from nonviolent sanctions.

Do you want more than 575,000 Israeli children dying from BDS?


This is truly the most perverse false comparison of anything that I’ve seen in a long time. Nice job. Attaboy Jackie.


Yes, I want the zionist apartheid nematodes to suffer very greatly from any and all sanctions. I want their festering reeking kitty liter box infested with every disease imaginable. I used to work for those filthy pigs and have no respect for their arrogance, their cult and their political power. They are not worth defending even by your standards. And those 500,000 Iraqi children didn’t deserve it. Israhell does.


Interestingly, she does not support BDS. She is being persecuted merely for belonging to a group on an Israeli list of groups whose members are prohibited from entering the country.


From the article:

Alqasem was the president of the University of Florida’s small group Students for Justice in Palestine, which urged members not to buy the brand Sabra, an Israeli hummus company.

If she was President of the group, one should be able to imply that she supports the actions of the group, which include BDS.


No - one should not. And in this particular case that assumption would go against what both she and her friends and faculty advisors have indicated her position to be. She studied both Hebrew and Arabic at UF and her Hebrew instructor - who was an alumnus of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem - was the person who recommended she go there.


Strange that someone who is involved enough to be President of the group doesn’t necessarily embrace the aims of the group, given that the group has supported BDS since 2011…

Is she just a careerist looking to pick up titles for her CV, or does she support the views of the organization she’s a leader of?


You are pointing to a national organization in which she had no leadership role. Several years ago, she was the President of a small campus affiliate of about 8 people total. She strongly supports Palestinian rights but not the BDS - especially with respect to all of Israel and not just the settlements so her going to Israel was not a contradiction at all. According to her Jewish studies professor at UF, she is an open minded person who wanted to better understand the complexities of Israeli society by studying human rights at The Hebrew University.


BDS does not necessarily require total boycott of Israel. It’s mostly about settlements in the West Bank, constraints on the freedoms of Palestinians, and the blockade of Gaza.

Here’s the latest on Alqasem’s case. Her courage is holding, and the Supreme Court appears to recognize the challenge they face:

Wednesday is now decision day.

@JackGreen, please compare the numbers of Israelis (under their US Iron Dome) and Gazans, especially of children, wounded and killed in any period of time you choose.

@WWSmith, the Presbyterian Church (USA) has divested $20M of its pension and endowment funds from 3 US companies (Caterpillar, H-P, and Motorola Systems) because they sell the Israelis goods and services used directly in oppression of the Palestinians. Should all Presbyterians be barred? (Some of our leaders have had to make end runs to visit the West Bank.)


I’d make a distinction between someone who is a member of a church, who’s primary purpose is not influencing Israeli policy with an executive officer of an organization who’s primary purpose is influencing Israeli policy.

Ultimately, every nation has a right to control it’s borders and who can come in.


To the contrary, I’d say the divestment decision was an expression of the church’s primary purpose. One of many expressions, certainly, and this divestment was less than 1/10 of our funds. But it had Netanyahu unhappy enough that he sent a letter, in the midst of the General Assembly considering the question, trying to buy off our leadership with a free trip to the Holy Land to meet himself. True to Presbyterian form, the (elected) moderator of the assembly asked the (elected) commissioners whether they wanted him to delay and make the trip, and they responded, by acclamation, "NO!!! I think BN’s offer had an influence opposite to what he hoped.