Friday, February 26, 2021

BDS Activist Convicted of Assault in Berlin Court

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Aaron Bandler is a staff writer for the Jewish Journal, mainly covering anti-Semitism and anti-Israel bias. Originally from the Bay Area, his past work experience includes writing for The Daily Wire, The Daily Caller and Townhall.

Aaron Bandler
Aaron Bandler is a staff writer for the Jewish Journal, mainly covering anti-Semitism and anti-Israel bias. Originally from the Bay Area, his past work experience includes writing for The Daily Wire, The Daily Caller and Townhall.

A boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) activist was convicted in a German court of assault that authorities said was committed while protesting a 2017 event at Humboldt University in the German capital.

The Jerusalem Post reported that the incident occurred at a speaking event featuring Israeli Knesset Member Aliza Lavie and Israeli Holocaust survivor Deborah Weinstein, who were talking about life in Israeli. The activist, Stavit Sinai, and two other BDS activists disrupted the event.

The court convicted Sinai of banging on a door at the event, which resulted in injuries to two people. Sinai has to either pay a fine of 450 euros ($530.39) or serve a 30-day prison sentence.

Sinai, who calls herself an Israeli dissident in her Twitter bio, argued in a tweet that she was punched in the face at the event; accompanying the tweet was an image containing a statement that she didn’t regret her conduct and that she won’t be paying the fine.

“There’s no punishment that can silence me from speaking about the crimes of apartheid,” the statement read. “I am confident that one day the apartheid criminals would be sitting here instead of me.”


Sinai and the two other activists also faced charges of criminal trespassing; those were dismissed.

Frankfurt Mayor Uwe Becker, who is also the Hesse commissioner to combat anti-Semitism, praised the court’s decision as “an important success against the violent character of BDS and its supporters.”

“It unmasks the violent character of the BDS movement, because it shows that even Holocaust survivors are attacked by BDS when they speak out for the Jewish state,” Becker told the Post. “So it makes clear that the aim of BDS is not about peaceful protest against political decisions in Israel but the aim is the destruction and delegitimization of the Jewish state by all means.”

He added that the decision also shows that the BDS movement aims to silence views that oppose its narrative.

“It makes clear that BDS is lying about their history when they want to present themselves as a Palestinian human rights movement,” Becker said. “They are lying about their aims, when they proclaim the borders of 1967 as their major goal, and they are lying about their means when they want to present themselves as a peaceful movement.”

Ronnie Barkan, one of the other activists who was charged with disrupting the 2017 event, argued in an Aug. 3 Medium post that Sinai was banging on the doors because she was trying “to find out the details of the person who had just punched her in the face. Thanks to one of the Zionist witnesses who inadvertently showed the judge a video that he had never published before — the punching was clearly visible — giving immense credibility to Stavit’s testimony while discrediting each and every Zionist witness that testified against us.”

He also wrote that the trespassing charges were dismissed “on the basis of formality flaws by the prosecution” and said it was a win for them to be able to promote “an unapologetic discourse of resistance to the criminal Israeli apartheid regime in Berlin — the last standing bastion for Zionism.”

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