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Latest on battle between ANC 16 & BDS

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Who makes SA’s Mideast policy? What is it? ALL THE LINKS and the story that catches readers up on the daily going-on in this increasingly hostile battlefield. Pictured is Nthabiseng Molefe, now-suspended chairman of the Wits branch of Sasco, who blames BDS and not the ANC for the intimidation of the ANC-16. All 16 have stuck together and while BDS has been relatively quiet, the ANC-affiliated youth structures have come down heavily on the student and business leaders who travelled to Israel. SEE ALL THE LINKS HERE!
by ANT KATZ | Jul 22, 2015

The battle rages on against 16 senior ANC-affiliated senior students and business leaders who have been ostracised, intimidated and punished by BDS and ANC-aligned structures for going on a fact-finding trip to Israel and Palestine earlier this month. The story has evolved daily in the mainstream media over the past week. Readers will find all the updates at the foot of this page.

Swartz - Ben1A flurry of questions are being asked about what SA’s policy is towards the Middle East - and who makes the policy. There is a clear line of difference between the ANC as a party, and the government. SA Zionist Federation chairman, Ben Swartz praises this separation as a display of “good governance” and told Jewish Report that the government had never imposed a travel ban or supported Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (Israel) BDS’ policies.

RIGHT: Fed chairman Ben Swartz

Tensions between the ANC and BDS on the one hand, and government on the other, have been heightened and, in some cases, even the previously most radical BDS supporters are now blaming that organisation for hiding the truth from them in the past.

LAST THURSDAY Cosas, the ANC-affiliated student organisation, suspended their members who had attended. The 16 senior young leaders issued a statement to the national media blaming BDS which was, they said, hiding things from young people.

LAST FRIDAY the ANC Youth League in the Western Cape came out with a statement, also saying that travel to Israel was against ANC policy – and that BDS policies were - and supported the call for the suspension of the 16, who continue to stand their ground.

LAST SATURDAY Obed Bapela, who had led the onslaught against the 16, started being attributed as “head of the ANC’s international relations committee” and no longer as “deputy minister in the Presidency.” Was this merely a coincidence or had government given Bapela the “Not in our name” speech? It is anyone's guess, but it has remained as ANC all week.

Fed chairman Ben Swartz says that government has never adopted BDS policy as their own, as Bapela and others had claimed. Neither did they impose a travel ban – evidenced by President Jacob Zuma having twice in recent times dispatched his personal high-level two-man delegation to Israel to meet top Foreign Affairs officials and ministers.

SUNDAY's media was awash with stories on the issue – including four separate pieces in the KZN’s Sunday Tribune. IOL titles referenced Jewish Report’s coverage extensively. Offer Nthabiseng Molefe (pictured above), one of the students who went to Israel on the sponsored trip, told the local Jewish Report newspaper last week that the group had offered her R40 000 "not to go on the trip". The newspaper said Molefe told it the group "had offered her (Molefe) and other dele-gates R40 000 each in cash to buy them out of cancellation waivers they had signed". Jewish Report further described Molefe as a "typical example of what a future ANC leader in South Africa looks like". The newspaper also said this "group was unique in that they were all young, black youth leaders holding influential positions in ANC structures or organisations supporting the ANC". "They included the niece of a senior government minister... There were also high-ranking members of traditionally anti-Israeli organisations such as the SA Students Congress (Sasco), Wits SRC's secretary general and members of the ANC Youth League."

MONDAY saw more ANC/16/BDS-bashing in the media with everyone jockeying for position.

ON TUESDAY, a senior Sasco official was grilled by an Enca TV presenter during a lengthy interview in which he, too, spoke of following BDS policy to prohibit their members from travelling to Israel. The 16 continued to lambaste BDS for hiding the truth and accused them, BDS, of bringing the ANC into disrepute by hiding behind their structures.

There is no sign of this tussle blowing over anytime soon. In the meantime, the 16 await news of their impending disciplinary procedures.








  1. 2 nat cheiman 22 Jul
    ANC, BDS, Hamas, Hezbollah, Is, Boko Haram, Al Shabaab, Al Quds, Al Qaeda, North Korea, Iran, same [Tsk tsk, Nat, remember if you generalise it is hate-speech or racism -MODERATOR]. Included in those halls of infamy is Dumbo Dlamini the village idiot running around Wits pretending to be a pseudo intellectual. 
  2. 1 bds works 23 Jul
    South African youth on Israel junket threatened with no-show fine  


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