Letter to the editor

Antisemitism vs Anti-zionism: Behind the controversy

I want to thank Gwen Frost for a thoughtful article on Noa Raman’s visit to WWU. Both anti-semitism and routine Israeli violations of International Law deserve serious scrutiny.

However, the discussion overlooks one crucially important fact: our United States government has given Israel over $3 billion each year in foreign aid for decades, more than to any other country. Our government also gives Israel ongoing, bipartisan diplomatic support. For example: President Trump announced that he would move the United States embassy to Jerusalem; the UN General Assembly voted on a resolution calling President Trump’s decision “null and void”; only seven other countries joined the US and Israel to vote against that resolution.

The Obama administration engaged in the largest joint military exercise ever to be held between the two countries, and repeatedly cast the only “no” votes on measures critical of Israel at the UN Human Rights Council.

In 2004, the International Court of Justice ruled that Israel is violating international law with its establishment of settlements in occupied Palestinian territories, and should return the land and property it seized. The ICJ also ruled that “all states [including the United States] are under an obligation not to render aid or assistance in maintaining the situation created [by the settlements].”

It is not Israeli violations of International Law that should concern us: as United States citizens, we should be concerned with the fact that our own government is criminally sponsoring, supporting, and in fact makes possible those violations.

Matteo Tamburini

WWU alumnus, MS in Mathematics 2009

Board Member, Whatcom Peace and Justice Center


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