Visit Israel? You’re Canceled. The New Threat to Democrats in Congress

Haaretz Weekend
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The BDS movement is increasing pressure on progressive Democrats, and visiting Israel is becoming a source of political trouble Credit: AFP
Haaretz Weekend

“We see a voice in Congress that is not talking about Palestinian human rights, that isn’t a progressive pro-Israel voice. It is a voice saying ‘Israel is completely illegitimate and you shouldn’t engage with it at all.’”

Americans for Peace Now CEO Hadar Susskind joins host Allison Kaplan Sommer this week to talk about the pressure being put on a group of left-wing Democratic lawmakers who have participated in delegations to Israel – even when those delegations meet with Palestinian leaders and representatives to hear and amplify their cause.

He notes that activists are seeking out “progressive members of color because that’s who they think they can impact and influence,” calling the pressure to boycott Israel entirely a “terrible, terrible tactic.”

Later on the podcast, former Israel Defense Forces international spokesman Peter Lerner discusses how Israel should confront the phenomenon of it being “canceled.”

“Israel needs to be very cautious not to give the fringe elements a platform,” Lerner says. “We can’t get involved in internal U.S. politics, but we need to empower those who want to come and learn and listen and see – and criticize,” he adds.

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