by Giulio Meotti
BDS seems to only work in one direction.
59,628 professors whose teaching license has been withdrawn. 1,577 university presidents who have been forced to resign. A climate of persecution, denunciation and suspicion in university classrooms and at the Ministry of Education. It is great academic purge that Recep Erdogan launched after the failed coup.
Numbers reminiscent of the Stalinist academic purges in the USSR. In light of this dramatic assault on intellectual freedom in Turkey, one would expect that Western academic legions would be in turmoil to show solidarity with Turkish colleagues, besieged and persecuted. Yet, these Western champions of freedom who have embraced the “Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” (BDS) against Israel did not find the time to launch any campaign against the Turkish purge, unworthy even of a raised eyebrow of scandal.
In England, the National Association of Teachers in Higher Education and the Association of University Teachers, which have adopted the boycott of Israel, have been silent about Turkey. Same silence from the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, which was signed by 500 American professors. Silence from the 300 Italian academics who promoted the Israeli boycott.
Double standards have already emerged from the words of Curtis Marez, the president of the American Studies Association who voted to boycott Israel. When he was asked why his organization was only attacking Israel and not, for example, China or Saudi Arabia or Turkey, Marez answered: “One has to start somewhere”.
The president of the American Studies Association had also said that the boycott of Israel “is the best way to protect and expand academic freedom and access to education”. This does not apply to the 59,628 Turkish teachers.
Only the Jewish State, the only democracy in the Middle East where BDS supporters enjoy freedom and visibility, deserves Western condemnation.
A boycott of Turkey would prove that they are not the useful idiots of Arab-Islamic rejection. These Western professors would have the opportunity to say no to the Turkish discrimination against the Kurds, who unlike the Palestinian Arabs, have no autonomy and parliament and police.
But apart from the BDS Movement's visceral hate against Israel, another possible explanation for the Western academic silence about their Turkish colleagues may be the involvement of Turkey in the boycott of Israel. 111 universities in Turkey have already aligned themselves with BDS on the same order of Mr. Erdogan.
Could an academic bureaucrat from London or Paris or New York rally against his own protector? It would be asking too much from those hypocrites. One has to start “somewhere”. And from where if not from the Jews?
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