In a visit to Jerusalem on Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo assured Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Trump administration would not stand idly by and allow anti-Israel boycotts to go unchallenged.
“Today, I want to make one announcement with respect to a decision by the State Department that we will regard the global anti-Israel BDS campaign as anti-Semitic,” Pompeo said. “I know this sounds simple to you, Mr. Prime Minister, it seems. It seems like a statement of fact but I want you to know that we will immediately take steps to identify organizations that engage in hateful BDS conduct and withdraw U.S. government support for such groups.
“We want to stand with all other nations that recognize that the BDS movement for the cancer that it is and we’re committed to combatting it,” Pompeo continued. “Our record speaks for itself. During the Trump administration, America stands with Israel like never before. Indeed, the commitment we’ve made, the iron clad commitment we’ve made to the Jewish state will continue, I’m confident of that after our conversation this morning.”
Democrats like Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib won’t be happy to hear that supporting a boycott of Israel is, in and of itself, a form of antisemitism, but it is not a sentiment that begins and ends with Mike Pompeo and the Trump administration. As the global group NGO Monitor said in a statement, such a definition is essential to finding a peaceful path forward in the Middle East:
The equating of BDS with antisemitism echoes the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism, which defines attempts to deny “the Jewish people their right to self-determination” and apply “double standards” as antisemitic.
Combating antisemitism and ending the exploitation of universal human rights are both issues of great importance, and the need to address these objectives should transcend political divisions. In this context, NGO Monitor has called for governments, as well as NGOs, to adopt the IHRA working definition of antisemitism.
Of course, once Biden takes office, we can surely expect his administration to follow the Obama course of alienating our Israeli allies in favor of pandering to Iran and other enemies of the United States. In a sea of confused Democratic Party agenda items, nowhere is the confusion more glaring than it is when determining who our friends are overseas.