Bill 720
Published: 2017-09-21

Revisionists and all people concerned with Free Speech should be concerned with the antics of the United States Congress regarding Senate Bill 720, the Israel Anti-Boycott Act.

The bill is framed to "defend Israel from economic attacks" by the United Nations, specifically calls to boycott or "blacklist" companies that support Israeli activities in the Occupied Territories. 

The bill prohibits US “persons” from supporting this UN call and imposes civil penalties up to $250,000 and criminal penalties up to $1,000,000 and up to 20 years in prison.

The bill was introduced on March 23, 2017 by Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) with the enthusiastic support of  AIPAC and the Anti-Defamation and it quickly gained 48 co-sponsors in the Senate. 

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/720

The language of the bill is remarkably vague and prohibits any U.S. person engaged interstate or foreign commerce from supporting, or conspiring to support:

any request by a foreign country to impose any boycott against a country that is friendly to the United States and that is not itself the object of any form of boycott pursuant to United States law or regulation, or 

any boycott fostered or imposed by any international governmental organization against Israel or any request by any international governmental organization to impose such a boycott.

The ability of Congress to dissemble is exemplified by Senators Cardin and Ron Wyden (D-Or). They claim the bill is not a restriction on free speech but is only directed at businesses and individuals who boycott Israel in response to "foreign entities (like the UN or the European Union). The duplicity and arrogance of these two Senators should be a warning to all that Congress is a weak reed in the defense of our political rights.

Send a polite request to your Senator and Member of Congress to vote no on bill 720.


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Author(s): David Merlin
Title: Bill 720
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Published: 2017-09-21
First posted on CODOH: Sept. 21, 2017, 12:57 a.m.
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