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Israeli Ministers Tackle BDS Deligitimizers


JERUSALEM, Israel -- Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked is not one to sit idly back while anti-Israel activists press ahead with their boycott, divest and sanction (BDS) agenda.

Shaked is preparing lawsuits against BDS activists in both civil and criminal courts for discrimination, racism and damaging Israeli trade, the Time of Israel reported.

According to the report, the justice minister is working with Public Security and Information Minister Gilad Erdan as his ministry prepares to tackle the international campaign to delegitimize Israel's existence.

The Times article quotes Education Minister and Jewish Home Party chairman Naftali Bennett, who recently warned that Israel will "hit back" against those who try to delegitimize Israel with boycotts, divestment and sanctions.

"Let it be clear to any company or organization that's considering boycotting us, we will hit back. We will attack our attackers. We will boycott our boycotters," Bennett said, calling the "boycott weapon" a "double-edged sword."

"If you're thinking of boycotting Israel, keep in mind there are tens of millions of Israel supporters around the world -- Jews and non-Jews -- with considerable buying power and boycott power," Bennett said. "Whoever boycotts Israel will be boycotted. Whoever hits Israel, will be hit back. We will no longer remain silent."

Meanwhile, former Israeli U.S. Ambassador Michael Oren called the BDS movement a "strategic threat" to the Jewish state.

"BDS is coming at us from all different areas," Oren told Arutz Sheva earlier this week. "It's coming at us on the grocery shelves of Europe and the United States. It's coming at us from financial institutions in Europe that are cutting off connections with us."

Oren said the Palestinian Authority's petition at the International Criminal Court at The Hague is another attempt to delegitimize Israel.

"BDS uses the Palestinian issue as sort of a cover, as camouflage," he said.

"They want to create a situation where we don't have the right to defend ourselves," he said.  "They work in conjunction with Hezbollah, with Hamas. This is a strategic threat."

"If we don't wake up and start devoting the appropriate resources for it and training the right personnel to fight it, just like in a war, we're going to be in a much more difficult situation," Oren said.

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