Israel and the BDS Movement: Securitization and the Struggle for Influence

This policy paper discusses the BDS movement’s strategy and Israel’s policies to counter the movement.

As the battle for influence between the BDS movement and Israel escalates, how boycotting efforts force Israel to change its Palestine policy is a matter of discussion. This paper discusses the BDS movement’s strategy and Israel’s policies to counter the movement. It argues that Israel “securitises” BDS activities as an “existential threat” through expanding the definition of anti-Semitism. This strategy enables Israel to tighten its security measures in its Palestine policy and hence, leads to increased violations of human rights. Following a brief background of the BDS movement, Israel’s efforts to counter the movement’s influence, and the securitisation dilemma that subsequently emerges will be explored. In addition, how Israel implements a similar strategy towards other pro-Palestinian NGOs will be discussed.

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