Lobbying politicians in Australia has not brought them into line with international opinion. A new campaign aims to turn that around, writes Jake Lynch.
image from article, with caption: APAN members
Australia’s peak Palestine support group, the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network, hasvoted at its Annual General Meetingto “endorse a policy of boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) of Israeli and international institutions complicit in violations of human rights and international law in Israel-Palestine”.
APAN has resisted support for BDS in the past, preferring to concentrate on lobbying politicians, both individually and through parties, and doubtless aware of the demonisation and dirty tricks of the Israel lobby and its rightwing allies that are directed at anyone who actually does anything to uphold Palestinian rights and freedoms, as opposed to merely talking about them. ...
[T]here are myriad BDS targets in Australia because the country is teeming with “institutions complicit in violations of human rights and international law in Israel-Palestine”, to quote the new APAN policy. One of them is the University of Sydney, where phoney Fellowship schemes link with the Technion University of Haifa, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, both of which are up to their neck in the occupation.
Hence the call by the Sydney Staff for BDS group, which joined APAN this year, to revoke such schemes as a misuse of the University’s good name, and that of scholarly research in general, as part of so-called ‘public diplomacy’ whose aim is reduce pressure from the international community for a change in policy.
Jake Lynch is a member of Sydney Staff for BDS, which affiliates with APAN.
A Princeton PhD, was a US diplomat for over 20 years, mostly in Eastern Europe, and was promoted to the Senior Foreign Service in 1997. For the Open World Leadership Center, he speaks with
its delegates from Europe/Eurasia on the topic, "E Pluribus Unum? What Keeps the United States United." Affiliated with Georgetown University for over ten years, he shares ideas with students about public diplomacy.
The papers of his deceased father -- poet and diplomat John L. Brown -- are stored at Georgetown University Special Collections at the Lauinger Library. They are manuscript materials valuable to scholars interested in post-WWII U.S.-European cultural relations.
This blog is dedicated to him, Dr. John L. Brown, a remarkable linguist/humanist who wrote in the Foreign Service Journal (1964) -- years before "soft power" was ever coined -- that "The CAO [Cultural Affairs Officer] soon comes to realize that his job is really a form of love-making and that making love is never really successful unless both partners are participating."