June 26, 2018
News Press Release

ZOA Praises Cong’s DeSantis and Goodlatte for Bill to Fight BDS Anti-Israel Boycotts

ZOA president Morton A. Klein and Director of ZOA’s Center for Law and Justice, Susan Tuchman, Esq. released the following statement:

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) commended U.S. Representative Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) for introducing H.R. 6095, the Export Administration Anti-Discrimination Act (EAADA), which will bolster already-existing law prohibiting restrictive trade practices and boycotts against countries friendly to the United States, including Israel.

The Export Administration Act of 1979 prohibits discriminatory boycotts and other attempts to economically harm nations friendly to the United States and their businesses. The EAADA strengthens that law by:

(1) Expanding the scope of prohibited conduct from boycotts imposed by foreign countries to all boycotts of a nation not subject to U.S. sanctions, regardless of the boycott’s origin;

(2) Creating a private right of action for those who are injured by unlawful boycotts; and

(3) Permanently enacting the anti-boycott protections in the 1979 Export Administration Act that are presently only enforced by Executive Order.

The legislation will help us hold accountable those who are singling out and discriminating against Israel and Israelis, in commerce and on our college campuses.  Also, anyone who is harmed by this despicable discriminatory behavior will now be able to seek recourse in federal court. 

The EAADA provides that anyone who intentionally or knowingly violates its provisions will be fined and/or imprisoned. 

Importantly, the legislation specifically identifies Israel as among the United States’ “fellow democratic countries” that “are vital partners in the global pursuit of civil and human rights, including the protection of free speech.”  Also, of special importance to deeply disturbing efforts to boycott Israeli scholars and academic institutions, the bill provides that “[a]ttempts to single out Israel and its citizens . . . for discriminatory boycotts violate fundamental principles of academic freedom.”

ZOA urges everyone in Congress to support this important Bill. The EAADA is a crucial new tool in our fight against the discriminatory and anti-Semitic boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel.  The legislation will help us hold accountable those who are singling out and discriminating against Israel and Israelis, in commerce and on our college campuses.  Also, anyone who is harmed by this despicable discriminatory behavior will now be able to seek recourse in federal court. 

This much-needed legislation is crucial to our country’s trade and commerce with our allies around the world.  And it makes it even clearer that our country will not tolerate discrimination against valued friends like Israel.