The Politics Of Boycotting Nations

The politics of boycotting invariably emerges as a selective approach to dealing with supposed tyrannical regimes. At the recent Toronto International Film Festival, a group of “stars” send a strong message against showing Israel films and denounced Israel as a country which violates human rights. One film, “Ajami” was jointly made by a Palestinians and an Israel Jew in order to depict the brutality and horror of the current conflict between Palestinians and Jews. A film, “Lebanon” was hardly a pro-Israel film and openly engaged in issues dealing with the brutal and misguided Israel invasion of that country. Leonard Cohen recently was giving concerts in Israel and wanted to donate money for the reconciliation movement but activists, many from the UK forced cancellation of at least one concert.

Activists who want boycott of Israel apparently see no need for a boycott of Sudan whose policies have resulted in the death of 300,000 in Darfur as well as thousands of rapes. They see no need to boycott Cuba which imprisons thousands of gays and lesbians and denies the basic rights of freedom of speech and press. They do not see any need to boycott dictatorial regimes like China(its abuse of human rights pales besides anything done in Israel), Burma, Russia, Zimbabwe, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, etc.. the list can go on and on.

Only Israel attracts their attention. I wonder why>