Don't Ban Americans Who Peacefully Oppose Israeli Policies
The Israeli Knesset passed legislation known as the "Entry Law" on March 6, 2017, which will ban entry to Israel of foreigners who support or publicly engage in a blanket boycott of Israel, or who support or engage in boycotts targeting West Bank settlements.
- This legislation is aimed at a basic civil liberty: the freedom of expression. Boycotting and calling for boycotts are legitimate forms of peaceful political expression, protected in the US and in any democracy.
- Passage of this legislation sends a message to American supporters of Israel and to the public that legitimate political expression concerning Israel is illegitimate and will literally prevent Americans from being allowed into Israel.
- Passage of this legislation sends a message to the world that the Israeli government is throwing out basic democratic norms in its effort to quash peaceful opposition and criticism of its policies.
Whether or not you support a blanket boycott of Israel (APN does not), American Jews should be appalled at Israel adopting a policy that would be more at home in the old Soviet Union or in North Korea than in a liberal democracy.
Whether or not you support boycotts of settlements (APN does), American Jews should be outraged at the prospect of seeing Israel becoming a nation that bars entry to people - including Jews and other supporters of Israel - for the "crime" of peacefully opposing Israeli policies.
APN: "We fiercely reject and condemn this outrageous law, which is an ugly stain on Israel. It will add Israel to the club of nations that treat non-violent protest as a crime, and that irrationally believe that closing borders can prevent the spread of ideas.”