At an event on combatting BDS, Israeli President addresses anti-Semitism under the guise of criticism of Israel, the rise of anti-Semitism globally and need to confront BDS movements “hate and discrimination”.


Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin on Thursday called to expose the “modern blood libels” spread by the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. He made the remarks during his speech at the International Conference on Combating Antisemitism and the BDS Campaign in Jerusalem on Thursday where he spoke about the rise of global anti-Semitism and the norm of anti-Semitism disguised as anti-Zionism.

Rivlin welcomed legitimate criticism of the State of Israel’s policies and actions, encouraging discourse over boycotts and lies while condemning the use of attacking Israel as a modern expression of anti-Semitism. He stated from Israel’s capital, “Too often, the left tries to hide its anti-Semitism in the disguise of anti-Zionism. They try to present their campaign to boycott Israel as progressive. There is nothing progressive about hate. There is nothing progressive about anti-Semitism.”

Directly on the BDS movements’ claims that its efforts are supporting the Palestinian cause, he corrected, “BDS does not seek peace, or even to help our Palestinian neighbors. It seeks to delegitimize Israel’s very existence.” He called on the international community to “expose the modern blood libels spread by BDS and put a price on its hate and discrimination.”

The BDS movement claims through boycotting, divesting and sanctioning the State of Israel, they will pressure the Israeli government to end its “occupation” of the Palestinian people in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. It accuses Israel of colonialism, genocide, apartheid, occupation and war crimes, among many others. This is supported and promoted by misleading statistics, lies and biased and inaccurate reporting on Israel and the Israel Defense Forces. The BDS movement’s use of academic and Jewish groups in supporting, promoting and protecting their anti-Semitic and anti-Israel efforts have allowed BDS activity to grow and expand while gaining legitimacy, particularly within North America and Europe.

Photo: Roman Yanushevsky/