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Israel: More popular than ever in U.S., and not as isolated as you think

Israel: More popular than ever in U.S., and not as isolated as you think

Focus on containing the BDS disease, and educating the youth.

To repeat, take the Boycott Divest and Sanction movement seriously, because it reflects an insidious coalition of anti-Israeli leftists and Islamists, which reflects a sophisticated part of the overall war on Israel.

But, keep things in perspective.

Despite all the heated anti-Israel rhetoric coming from academic extremists, Israel has favorability ratings in the latest Gallup survey have surged in the last year, and remain far beyond favorable views of the Palestinians:

Gallup Survey Israel Favorability February 2014

Also don’t panic about Israel’s economic isolation, as pointed out by Yoram Ettinger (emphasis in original):

1. A record of 5.3 million tourists in Israel in 2013.

2. A record of $83.2BN foreign exchange reserves reflects the strength of Israel’s Shekel, at a time when the currencies of the emerging markets plummet.

3. A record of $2.3BN invested in 662 Israeli startups in 2013 (21% above 2012), according to KPMG and IVC (Globes, January 23, 2014).

4. Over 250 multinational research & development centers operate in Israel (Globes, February 13).

5. “Funds from the US, Europe and China are showing interest in dozens of Israeli companies that will be forced on to the auction block by Israel’s efforts to increase competition…. The sale [of dominant Israeli companies] is required by a law passed in December, 2013 to loosen the grip conglomerates have on the economy…. [Israel’s economic] growth is projected to outpace both the US and the euro area this year and next. The stability of the Israeli economy, and its fundamentals, make it attractive to foreign investors…. You are buying not because of a crisis in Israel, but because there is a desire to boost competition (Bloomberg, February 4, 2014, Alisa Odenheimer and Sharon Wrobel).”

6. Australia’s Woodside Petroleum, Ltd. will join explorations in Israel’s Leviathan offshore natural gas field, accepting a Memorandum of Understanding – to be completed by March 27 – which will provide the Australian giant with a 25% equity for $2.7BN (Globes Business Daily, February 10, 2014). Norway is increasingly interested in Israel’s natural gas market. Stavanger University concluded an agreement, in the energy-engineering area, with Israel’s Technion (Globes January 27). Cyprus negotiates a $3BN natural gas import from Israel.

There’s a lot more at the link.

The one place we are seeing some of the results of the academic BDS movement is in younger people.  Israel still is far more popular than the Palestinians, but by not as great a margin.

Gallup Survey Israel Favorability February 2014 By Age Group

So don’t be complacent, fight the fight, keep the BDS disease from spreading, but don’t panic.

Think strategically, not emotionally.

(Featured Image source: LI Reader Danelle, taken in Harper, TX)


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China wants to buy in to a lot of companies and businesses world wide. Some of it is about parking money in other countries as the rich flee and take their money with them. Part of it is about theft of technology and reselling the stolen stuff to the source country at a cheaper price for a shabbier product.

TrooperJohnSmith | February 20, 2014 at 2:17 pm

Israel has a leadership advantage over the US, in that its leader has charisma, charm, intelligence and an analytical mind that is not the construct of an adoring media, willingly believed and promulgated by an army of mindless, willing sycophants.

Also, in an ironic twist, much of Israel’s support in America comes from those so-called “bitter clingers” so despised by the elites.

Much of the ‘hate Israel’ noise comes from a vocal minority.

The bulk of people understand that Israel simply wants to be left alone, and that Palestine is a terrorist sponsoring state.

Israel and Jews are often viewed much more negatively in the African American community where the usual ruthless, hateful demagogues do their work. When I hear the term, “Black leader,” or “Leader in the African American community,” or any phrase to such effect in the media, if what follows is not “Allen West,” or “Dr. Ben Carson,” or “Thomas Sowell,”—among numerous admirable others—I just tune what follows completely out. But, sadly, the usual suspects the media calls “leaders” in the black community are nothing but dangerous demagogues.

I am blessed to work with a handful of African American ladies whom I absolutely adore. We keep each other laughing constantly. When I (sorry, I mean “When Luke”) arrives at work, one of them, on the previous shift (our shifts overlap a couple hours so we have guaranteed deployment coverage 24/7) playfully announces to the office,

“Luke has entered the building … the party has started!!”

Luke has social phobia. It’s his Achilles’ heel. In purely social situations (parties, dinners, etc.) he’s either an uptight stick in the mud, or, trying way too hard not to be boring, waits until he can muster something into his completely blank mind and then goes with it and rambles crazily on and on to fill the otherwise uncomfortable silence he fears. His mind is paralyzed by any purely “it’s time to be social!” setting.

But for some reason, in a work environment, when the main focus is not on socializing, but on work, Luke just becomes the ultimate workplace comedian, yelling out jokes, playful putdowns, and teasing impressions effortlessly.

One of these ladies actually asked Luke, “Were you ever in the entertainment business before? An actor, or stand-up comedian, or something?”

I don’t know what it is about African American ladies, but our senses of humor just really hit it off and we can just riff off each other’s jokes all night long.

And guess what? These ladies are pro-Israel.

“Why?” you might ask. “That’s great, but a bit unusual.”

They are all devoted Christians. One was in the U.S. military when she was younger.

Compare them to one African American woman (I can’t stomach calling her a “lady”) with whom I used to work, (only two of the African American ladies with whom I work currently were around at the time of her stint in our office and experienced the displeasure of knowing her) who, thankfully, after causing so many problems and proving so incompetent and lazy, was transferred out. She was a pot-stirring troublemaker and the worst conspiracy theorist I’ve ever met. Occasionally, when there were no supervisors around, she’d bring up politics and try to bait me into saying something with which she could get me into trouble.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, she said loudly one day “… that white boy, John McCain. That’s right, Luke, you heard me right, that boy!”

Surprise, surprise, this same woman just knew the Jews controlled the media, Hollywood, the government’s foreign policy, all financial institutions … basically the whole world.

Was she a Christian like these other ladies? Nope.

I was talking some time ago with one of these lovely ladies about Dr. Ben Carson (she already knew all about him … much more than I knew) and we started talking about the seemingly unsolvable, entrenched problems of the black underclass.

I told her I thought America should, like Israel and a few other countries, require a two-year stint in the military. One benefit would be to teach these fatherless boys—with no self-discipline or values conducive to success imparted by stable, nurturing families—badly needed self-discipline, deferral of gratification, and personal responsibility.

She is a serious Christian who volunteers weekly in church-sponsored programs aimed at saving young children in the black community from falling prey to self-destructive habits and ways of thinking.

Do you know what she said when I mentioned my idea of having a mandatory two-year stint in the military like they do in Israel?

She said, (as accurately as I can remember),

“Oh, we had a wonderful time visiting Israel. We have these great pictures of us with these Israeli girls in the military holding their guns. We had a great time over there.”

Needless to say, she wholeheartedly agreed with my idea. And also with my idea for retired businessmen (or any avid investors) to volunteer time in the inner city teaching at-risk youth the joys and rewards of investing. Give them a stake in American business and capitalism.

What’s funny is that she and I were talking about Israel and terrorism one time and a Lebanese-American man, (born in Lebanon) from the neighboring section, whom I’ve also always got along with fabulously—constantly teasing each other—(he eats like a horse. One of the ladies I work with brings sweets almost everyday to the office for us to munch on. He always seems to mosey on by our section for some ostensible reason when she shows up and tells us all to help ourselves to the sweets. When I see him from afar, heading in our direction, I yell out, “There is no more food! Please return to your station!” He laughs and keeps coming, and when the ladies tell him, of course he’s welcome to some (even though he doesn’t work in our section), I just grumble loudly, “Freaking jackals and hyenas can always smell other animals’ food and show up to take the lion’s share.” He replies with a dig at me, and when he starts to leave, I always quip, “Thank you! Please come again!”

Nevertheless, when he was walking by one day and stopped to listen to our conversation (“If you weren’t overhearing us so well, it could almost be called ‘eavesdropping'”) I kidded him, but I was actually a bit nervous because I knew nothing of his politics nor his worldview at the time … and … seeing as he was Lebanese, I figure there was a pretty hefty chance he was anti-Israel.

Boy oh boy, there was no reason for me to have worried.

Again, as accurately as I can remember, he said,

“Obama has no idea what he’s doing in the Middle East. He should just listen to the Israelis. They know what’s going on. Obama is clueless.”

I’ve also mentioned my gay coworker here at LI. His father was a microbiologist working in hospitals around the world so he grew up living in many different places all over the world. From Saudi Arabia to boarding school in England. His experience in Saudi Arabia made him shake his head and roll his eyes when I told him about Professor J’s posts about radical gays’ charges of Israeli “pinkwashing.”

He’s gay, but he has absolutely no time for the supposedly “gay community leaders” analogous to the hateful “black community leaders.”

He’s pro-Israel, pro-America, pro-life, pro-Sarah Palin.

His work ethic is legendary and you’d be hard-pressed finding a more model citizen. He also has a great sense of humor. You can kid with him about anything, including his being gay. He’s a true gentleman. He also grew up a church-attending Christian.

His one fault? He was an only child. I tell him he has “Only-child Syndrome.” He has trouble sharing things, a trait I constantly tease him about and which he readily acknowledges and laughs about, himself.

So, what do I do? I go into his desk drawers to “borrow” something, making sure he’s looking my way from a distance at the time, and, when he gets that look of concern on his face that says, “What are you doing in my desk drawer?” I say,

“Jon, I need something. But, more importantly, my main purpose here is to help you overcome your spoiled, only-child, the-world-revolves-around-me, hesitant-to-share ways. I’m that bratty brother, always taking your things, that you always wanted. It’s for your own good, Jon. A simple ‘Thanks’ will suffice.”

I have some great coworkers (and a few I can’t stand).

They give me some hope for the future. And, they show that the answers to curing anti-Israel, anti-capitalism, anti-America, etc., destructive ways of belief, are simple and obvious.

LukeHandCool (who has written way too much and is obviously in a manic phase. Either that or there’s some weird moon phase going on or his biorhythms are partying. Sorry, but Luke loves biographies and autobiographies. He’s well aware of the limits of anecdotal evidence, but he still loves reading such personal, in-the-trenches insights into what the truth is. At some point, an accumulation of anecdotal evidence pointing in the same direction graduates into becoming a pattern to reckon with. Still not proof, but a suggestion at what the truth is)

BannedbytheGuardian | February 20, 2014 at 4:43 pm

The good news is that King Herod is finally getting some respect .

There is a new exhibition in isreal that is becoming a massive hit . The Jewish historian Josephus wrote some shit that found its way into the bible & became word for 1600 years. Christians have been mega hating on Herod for 1600 years.

I don’t know what Jewish objections to Herod were or how it has affected them. I am just glad to see this effort & very positive reaction in Israel.

Actually it is 2000 years and yes, Herod’s respect is for his building spree, not for history. After all, Herod was not a Jewish king but ruled as king over the Jews, thanks to Roman intervention. He was distrusted by the people and their religious authorities.

Whatever is your reason for happiness in Herod’s legacy obtaining respect from the Jews?

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to mackykam. | February 20, 2014 at 9:59 pm

    I never said he was a Jewish King nor did I say he needed to get respect from Jewish . I hope there are people of all beliefs in those lines winding several blocks to get into the exhibition.

    This is fundamental world history that is very exciting & has captured enormous interest globally . It is in the same vein as King Edward who was maligned by Shakespeare to gain favour with the Tudors . ( or keep his head ) . His excavation & legacy are single handedly re invigorating Northern England as a tourist /cultural magnet.

    If you like your big bad Herod , you can keep your big bad Herod. I wil go with the current science .

      BannedbytheGuardian in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | February 21, 2014 at 12:04 am

      Mistake . Make that Richard 3 .. The research has now extended to the the line of Edwards & new evaluations of things . .which is where I am up to .

      Similarly in Israel new history knowledge will lead to new research & ideas especially valuable in the academic battles. Israel has a huge deck of cards to play with .

“The one place we are seeing some of the results of the academic BDS movement is in younger people. Israel still is far more popular than the Palestinians, but by not as great a margin.” How many American pro-Israel organizations with huge money behind them are working on the campuses and have been for years and the pro-Palestinian sentiment is growing? Something is very wrong with this picture and needs to be examined seriously before they do such a good job that the pro-Palestinian sentiment among the youth surpasses that of the pro-Israel youth.

Att: Banned by the Guardian et al:

Herod,aka Herod the Great, was in fact Jewish. His father was converted by the Hashmoneans, descendants of the Macabees, who ruled Judea from 140-37 BCE. During the Hasmonean expansion, in the second century BCE, the peoples of Idumea or neighboring Edom were annexed to what was the second Jewish Commonwealth by John Hyrcanus, Religious conversion to Judaism of the conquered people was part of this expansion.
That he has been maligned by mainstream rabbinical and christian sources has more to do with his tyrannical ruthlessness than his status as a descendant of a convert. To cement his legitimacy he married (and subsequently murdered) Mariamne I, a Hasmonean princess. The analogy in British History would be closer to Henry VII, than Richard III- a usurper who seeks dynastic legitimacy through marriage.
As he was wholly dependent as a vassal king on the support and favor of the newly ascendant Romans, he was strongly assimilationist in his approach to the civil administration, another reason for the disdain in which he was held by the rabbbinical establishment.

I would think that the opinion of Jews by Israel’s neighbors is ultimately more important than what Americans think. Pew Research has been surveying this for a while now. You will see from the last survey that the situation among Muslims is quite dismal. Look at the 4th table on this page: In a previous survey they had found that 96% Lebanese Christians had an unfavorable opinion of Jews. I seriously doubt that the situation is better in 2014.