World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


US Congress Introduces Unconstitutional Bill Against BDS

Breaking: Congress Introduces Unconstitutional Bill Against BDS. Passage Will Stifle Academic Freedom.

Washington, DC | www.adc.org | February 6, 2014 - Today in Congress an unconstitutional bill was introduced, and if passed it would stifle academic freedom, chill free speech, and penalize the use of non-violent means of resistance and protest against the Israeli occupation. The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has received a lot of attention in recent months, after various American academic organizations, including the American Studies Association, instituted an academic boycott of Israeli universities and institutions. New legislation introduced in Congress today would prohibit any institution that participates in a boycott of Israeli academic institutions or scholars from receiving federal funds under the Higher Education Act.

The Protect Academic Freedom Act provides that, “The Secretary shall consider an institution of higher education to be participating in a boycott of Israeli academic institutions or scholars if the institution, any significant part of the institution, or any organization significantly funded by the institutionadopts a policy or resolution, issues a statement, or otherwise formally establishes the restriction of discourse, cooperation, exchange, or any other involvement with academic institutions or scholars on the basis of the connection of such institutions or such scholars to the state of Israel.”

To explain the rational for the legislation in terms that appeal to the average american taxpayer, Representative Peter Roskam made the following statement on Tuesday while introducing the Act:

“These organizations are clearly free to do what they want to do under the First Amendment, but the American taxpayer doesn’t have to subsidize it. The American taxpayer doesn’t have to be complicit in it. And the American taxpayer doesn’t have to play any part in it.”

So, according to Congressman Roskam's reasoning, it is perfectly ok that the American taxpayer has to be complicit in and play a part in sending Israel $3 billion dollars per year in foreign aid while Israel maintains its illegal occupation of Palestinian territory and continues to expand illegal settlements. Yet by contrast, our government's funding of American institutions of higher education that merely fund an organization that in turn makes a statement against a foreign country is somehow an unreasonable burden for American taxpayers to bear. If the goal is to save the American taxpayer some money, why not cut aid to a foreign country before we cut aid to American education?

Congressman Roskam's argument has no basis in logic.

For years Palestinians have adopted non-violent measures aimed at bringing an end to occupation. Through the BDS movement, activists are seeking to create international pressure on Israel to abide by international law, and end the occupation of Palestine. If passed, this bill will reveal the extent to which the American Congress instinctively seeks to protect Israel, even at the expense of time-honored American traditions like free speech and association.

ADC will continue to monitor the progress of the bill and will send subsequent action alerts related to the matter.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Death Of Fidel Castro

New Zealand likes to think we played our part – via the 1981 Springbok tour – in bringing the apartheid regime in South Africa to an end… Jacob Zuma treated the death of Fidel Castro at the weekend as an occasion to pay a heartfelt tribute to the thousands of Cuban soldiers who travelled across the world to inflict the first significant military defeat on the forces of white supremacy. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Election Home Stretch

Once again at the business end of a US election, the result will hinge on the same old bits of geography as always: the Five Crucial Counties in Ohio, the Two Crucial Counties in Pennsylvania and the I-4 Interstate Corridor in Florida that runs from Tampa Bay through Orlando to Daytona Beach. More>>

ALSO:

Meanwhile:

Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>

ALSO:

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news