134 members of US Congress denounce ASA’s Israel boycott

69 Democrats and 65 Republics sign letter against boycott of Israeli universities, calls move a “morally dishonest double standard.”

January 19, 2014 01:04
1 minute read.
Boycotting Israel

Israel boycott 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


NEW YORK – Sixty-nine Democrats and 65 Republicans in the US House of Representatives signed a letter on Friday denouncing the American Studies Association’s recent decision to boycott Israeli universities and academic institutions.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

The effort was spearheaded by Representatives Peter Roksam (R-Illinois), Ted Deutch (D-Florida), Doug Collins (R-Georgia) and Brad Schneider (D-Illinois).

Signatories on the letter include Representatives Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Florida) and Sander Levin (D-Michigan).

Roksam called the ASA ’s boycott “bigoted and an affront to academic freedom.”

“This boycott doesn’t advance peace between Israelis and Palestinians, but only reinforces dangerous stereotypes that limit mutual understanding and cooperation – two things that should be at the very heart of our academic endeavors,” the signatories said in a joint statement.

“We therefore cannot tolerate these ignorant smear campaigns to isolate Israel and deteriorate the historic US-Israel relationship.”


The letter, addressed to ASA president Curtis Marez and president-elect Lisa Duggan, states: “[The] ASA has every right to express its views on policies pursued by any nation or government, [however] we believe that the decision to blacklist Israeli academic institutions for Israeli government policies with which ASA disagrees demonstrates a blatant disregard for academic freedom.

“... Even more concerning is the singular targeting of Israel for boycott. Like all democracies, Israel is not perfect. But to single out Israel, while leaving relationships with universities in autocratic and repressive countries intact, suggests thinly veiled bigotry and bias against the Jewish state.”

The letter calls this a “morally dishonest double standard.”

“Academic cooperation can be an important tool to help foster peace between Israelis and Palestinians, but you have chosen the unproductive path of isolation,” it reads.

More than 200 American universities and six major US academic organizations have announced their opposition to the boycott. On January 10, New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver introduced a bill that would effectively bar any public university in New York from accepting state funds if it joined the boycott.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

October 18, 2018
Pope gets invite to North Korea, indicates will consider it