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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 01:42 AM
Original message
Peres opens Paris book fair as Muslims boycott 39 featured Israeli writers
PARIS - The Paris Book Fair opened yesterday in Porte de Versailles under the cloud of a boycott by seven Muslim countries in protest against the choice of Israel as guest of honor at the French-speaking world's largest literary event.

Scores of writers, publishers, editors and journalists attended the international fair, featuring 39 Israeli writers and publishers and officially opened by visiting Israeli President Shimon Peres, who described the boycott as "the most ridiculous thing I have heard in my life".

The large sign over Israel's pavilion, with a logo designed by David Tartakover collapsed, lightly injuring four people.

Algeria, Iran, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Yemen announced in advance they would shun the fair in response to a call from the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO).

The Morocco-based organization said last month it had urged the boycott to protest against Israel's actions against Palestinians.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/964236.html
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Hardrada Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 02:08 AM
Response to Original message
1. Is this supposed to shock us?
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 03:20 AM
Response to Original message
2. Up to them, but I always think that boycotting books is a pity...
especially when it's based simply on the nationality of the authors.

It's a way of keeping your mind closed.
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ProgressiveMuslim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Did you support the cultural boycotting of South Africa when it was in effect? nt
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 05:50 PM
Response to Reply #4
11. I supported the boycotts in general...
Edited on Sat Mar-15-08 05:58 PM by LeftishBrit
I don't think anyone proposed boycotting books by South African writers; and if they had, then no, I wouldn't have supported it.

But there's a difference anyway. The South African boycott was based on setting definite demands on South Africa. Most of the actual and proposed boycotts of Israel seem to be simply based on the idea that 'Israel is a bad country/ our enemy'.

People have a right to boycott whoever they want, but I definitely disagree with this one.

And frankly, if it's really just about 'treatment of Palestinians', some of the countries, notably Lebanon, could just as well boycott themselves.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:47 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. The South African boycott...
I don't generally agree with cultural boycotts, but I'd be hard pressed to disagree with the sporting boycotts of South Africa, or the boycotts by artists who refused to play at Sun City...

I'm not opposed to boycotts on Israel as long as they are well focused on what the results of the boycott should be (eg exert pressure on Israel to stop the settlement activity) and that the boycott are done in such a way that Israeli academics and writers who are opposed to the occupation aren't the ones affected by the boycott..

When it comes to this boycott, it's kind of pointless and not something I'd get on board with coz in that list of Israeli authors I spotted two writers who I admire greatly...
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ProgressiveMuslim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-16-08 07:39 AM
Response to Reply #14
38. Should Israeli artists and academics get to participte in world wide cultural
Edited on Sun Mar-16-08 07:41 AM by ProgressiveMuslim
and academic events when they're preventing Palestinians from doing so?
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Mar-17-08 04:34 AM
Response to Reply #38
41. I hadn't looked at it like that before...
Y'know, I'd strongly support a boycott of Israel when it comes to any specific event where Israel has prevented Palestinian artists and academics from attending. I'd also support a more targetted general academic boycott of Israeli academics, but I can't support any academic boycott where Israeli academics who are opposed to the occupation are prevented from speaking in other countries. If there'd been a boycott, I'd have never been able to see Ilan Pappe and Tanya Reinhart speak here in Canberra, and my friend who came with me to see Tanya Reinhart was so affected by her talk that she went on to develop an interest in the occupation, so that's an Israeli academic who was achieving something when she talked, imo. But when it comes to academics who support the occupation, they should be boycotted...
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Vegasaurus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 03:52 PM
Response to Reply #2
6. Yes, this is based on nothing more than their being Israeli
Imagine the hue and cry if Israelis boycotted Arab authors.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 04:47 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Israel boycotts Arab TV over Gaza coverage
HELD AL QUDS: Israel said on Wednesday it is boycotting an Arab language news television in protest at the pan-Arab channel's coverage of events in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.

"We have discussed this problem and I have decided that we will boycott this channel as its partial coverage is not credible and is damaging to us," Deputy Foreign Minister Majali Wahbe told army radio.

http://www.geo.tv/home/15175.htm

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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 12:28 PM
Response to Original message
3. Sa'udi Arabia has it's own book-related problems.
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MaryCeleste Donating Member (898 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
5. The inability of islam to tolerate free expression on display for all
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 04:52 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. It's a political boycott, not religious...
First, boycotting isn't something that's confined to one religion or even nationality. Boycotting is a legitimate form of political protest and has been used in the past in countries like the US (Montgomery bus boycott), the UK and here in Australia. Some boycotts I agree with, and some I don't, but the only people displaying an inability to tolerate freedom of expression are those who seem to think people don't have a right to participate in boycotts...
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azurnoir Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 05:05 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. a pot meet kettle moment n/t
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 05:49 PM
Response to Reply #5
10. Actually, although it's a Muslim group supporting this..
Edited on Sat Mar-15-08 05:52 PM by LeftishBrit
this doesn't seem to be about Muslim religious groups boycotting material contrary to their faith, but about representatives of very anti-Israel countries boycotting anything to do with Israel.
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. Silly me again!
And here I was thinking being Muslim is a religion.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:42 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Leftish Brit didn't say Islam isn't a religion...
What she pointed out was that clearly this boycott is a political one, not religious...
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:50 PM
Response to Reply #13
15.  Muslims boycott 39 featured Israeli writers
OP......Peres opens Paris book fair as Muslims boycott 39 featured Israeli writers

as Muslims boycott

a boycott by seven Muslim countries in protest against the choice of Israel as guest of honor at the French-speaking world's largest literary event.

seven Muslim countries

Is Muslim political or religious?


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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:53 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. How about you try reading the article instead of just the headline?
If you read it you'd know that the boycott is political and there is no religious motivations in there at all.

I find yr question rather bizarre. Israel is a Jewish state. It's boycotting al-Jazeera. Just like the book boycott, the boycott of al-Jazeera has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with politics...
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 07:59 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. With apologies again
I thought it was a religious group doing the boycotting, not a political group.
Yes, I did read the article and yes, I do understand what the protest is about.
I know I am old but I'm not yet feeble minded (though some may beg to differ).
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 08:10 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. No, it's countries doing the boycotting...
I don't think anyone would think that countries like Tunisia etc are religious groups. And the purpose of their boycott is a political one and there's none of the 'god told me to do this coz god agrees with me that I'm right and they're wrong!' sort of thing that are associated with religious boycotts...
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 08:23 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. So, it is a
religious group holding a political boycott, do we agree?
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 08:31 PM
Response to Reply #19
20. No, countries aren't religious groups....
That's what I explained to you in my post. Why do you think countries like Tunisia are religious groups?
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:04 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. From the OP
Algeria, Iran, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Yemen announced in advance they would shun the fair in response to a call from the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO).

Islamic Educational etc...Islamic = religious
Muslim = religion

ergo Muslim (religious countries) boycott........

That's what the man said, not me.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:08 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Oh, I see. So you also think Jewish=religious?
And again. It's countries that are boycotting, and countries aren't religious groups. I fail to see what's so hard to understand about that concept...
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:20 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. And I fail to see
that you don't see the OP title denotes religion.

Does it not say Muslim?
Is Muslim not a religion?
Does it not say Muslim countries?

Does it not say Islamic group?
Is Islam not a religion?

And yes, it is a political boycott!

And yes, Jews = religion.

Open my eyes, please.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:23 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. No-one is denying that Islam isn't a religion...
So I don't know what yr going on about now. All I've been pointing out is just because a country is an Islamic country, that doesn't make it a religious group any more than Israel being a Jewish country makes it a religious group....

Thank you for finally agreeing that the boycott is a political one. I don't know why that felt like pulling hen's teeth...
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:27 PM
Response to Reply #23
26. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:34 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. Since when has disagreeing with someone been nastiness?
Maybe you should try reading the thread before making false accusations, msmcghee. I've already said I don't support this boycott, and I'm not aware that pointing out that countries aren't religious groups is 'ranting' or being nasty...

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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:37 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. Oh I get it,
you mean I am being jerked around.
I do try to play nice but thanks for enlightening me.
I will cease now.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #28
29. Excuse me? Where did I jerk you round?
Edited on Sat Mar-15-08 09:46 PM by Violet_Crumble
My apologies if I came across that way, but I'm pretty sure I didn't. Can you point out where this happened?

btw, considering yr sitting there agreeing with someone who's post consisted of nothing but the usual personal attacks and abuse aimed at me, how is it that you see what was up till msmcghee's arrival a polite exchange as 'jerking' you round, but you appear to have no problems at all in someone posting insults about me?
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #29
30. Being a
'newbie' I am slow to pick up on subtle nuances but I am learning posters' personalities and idealogical platforms.

Perhaps 'nitpicking' is better terminology than 'being jerked around'
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:50 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. I don't think pointing out that countries aren't religious groups is nit-picking...
And seeing as how you'd agreed that the boycott was a political one, I think msmcghee's arrival in the discussion with her personal attacks aimed at me was totally out of line...
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:55 PM
Response to Reply #31
32. OK
if countries are not religious groups, what are Muslim countries?
Secular?

As per the OP.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #32
33. Muslim countries are Muslim countries...just like the Jewish state isn't a religious group...
Edited on Sat Mar-15-08 10:08 PM by Violet_Crumble
The term seems to be applied to any country that has a majority Muslim population. Indonesia's a Muslim country. Do you think that makes it a religious group as well?

btw, did you notice that the headline of the article was misleading?

And seeing as how you must have overlooked it, I'll accept yr gracious apology for agreeing with that other poster about the insulting things they were saying about me :)
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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 10:10 PM
Response to Reply #33
34. May I ask why is it called
a Muslim country if it is not intended to refer to a religion?
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 10:17 PM
Response to Reply #34
35. Of course it's referring to religion, but it doesn't mean the countries are religious groups...
Interestingly enough, one of the very few countries that can be referred to as a religious group is the Vatican...

I mentioned Indonesia specifically because of it being the most populous Muslim country in the world. Is it secular? Yes. Why couldn't it be? That'd be like saying Israel can't be secular because it's referred to as the Jewish state...

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hifalutin Donating Member (370 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 10:24 PM
Response to Reply #35
36. I'm glad we got that sorted out.
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 10:32 PM
Response to Reply #36
37. Yes, I know I'll sleep better tonight for it...n/t
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-16-08 08:02 AM
Response to Reply #34
40. I think it IS intended to refer to a religion...
just that the purpose of this boycott seemed to be political anti-Zionism, not religious theocracy. Many of the countries involved are both anti-Zionist and theocratic; but I think it's worthwhile trying to define the purpose of the boycott precisely. (If it was mainly Muslim fervour, they would probably have boycotted other 'Western secular' countries as well.)

And I wasn't nitpicking at you; only (mildly) at the original headline of the article.
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-16-08 07:57 AM
Response to Reply #12
39. Sorry for confusion; that's not what I meant
Muslim is definitely a religion - whoever said otherwise. But in this case, they are acting out of anti-Zionism, not out of relgious fervour. Religious people may be egging them on; but the main purpose is political.

There are plenty of situations where theocratic Muslim governments *do* ban things because they aren't in accordance with their religion. It's my impression this isn't what's happening here -especially as Muslim countries that are less politically anti-Israel (e.g. Egypt and Jordan) are not involved in this. Therefore I thought the headline was slightly misleading - though I/P rules say that we have to use the headline of the original article.
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breakaleg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 09:26 PM
Response to Original message
25. Many of us here would prefer is Palestinians used non-violent resistance. So why find fault with
this?

In another thread here Ilan Pappe said this:

Do you also call for an economic boycott of Israel?


"I am currently editing a book that compares the situation in Israel to the situation in South Africa, and I'm becoming convinced that there too, the economic boycott was less effective than the cultural one. As the son of German Jews, I know how important it is for our elites to be a part of Europe."
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Shaktimaan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-23-08 04:48 AM
Response to Reply #25
42. You lost me here.
Many of us here would prefer is Palestinians used non-violent resistance. So why find fault with this?

What does one thing have to do with the other? Should we be so relieved that someone is choosing to use non-violent measures that we shouldn't examine whether the protest itself is valid or constructive?

Would you find it appropriate if the same kind of protest was used to express disagreement with Hamas' use of terrorism? Whereby Palestine's cultural exports were protested along with their political policies? I mean, you're using a quote from Ilan Pappe as support. Would it make sense to protest Israel by denying him (and all other Israelis) a platform to speak as well?

MLK protested segregation on the buses by boycotting the bus lines. How does protesting Israeli authors have any effect on Israel's political policies? Do we do this with any other country on earth?
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