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The War of Ideas in the Middle East


Welcome to the

ISRAEL DIVESTMENT CAMPAIGN
A California initiative calling on public employee pension funds to divest from and to refrain from investing in corporations complicit in Israel's violations of universal human rights and international law

IDC is a participant in the international boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign (BDS) initiated by Palestinian civil society as a non-violent means to achieve justice, equality and peace.



California public employee pension funds owe it to both the workers and taxpayers who contribute to them to invest in companies that respect their workers and honor human rights wherever they operate. Caterpillar is a company that flagrantly violates these principles in both in occupied Palestine and in North America. To learn more about this issue, click here.

       Cat plant is closed             Gazans fleeing caterpillar
Photo by Khalil Hamra

In response to Caterpillar's abuses, IDC is launching a new campaign, appealing to California public pension funds PERS, STRS and LACERA to divest from Caterpillar. These pension funds have endorsed the UN Principles of Responsible Investment which should mean they are committed to respecting human rights and workers rights in directing their portfolios.

Let's make sure that they do!



IDC Campaign Updates


09.16.2013 IDC Update
IDC responds to PERS New "Investment Beliefs" Document

David Mandel David Mandel represented IDC at the September 16, 2013 PERS Investment Committee meeting during which a new policy document titled "Investment Beliefs" was adopted.

Mandel welcomed the new policy statement and noted that the Board's emphasis on "engagement" should lead to a resumption of the hastily terminated "engagement" with companies that are complicit in Israeli's violation of Palestinian human rights. Click for video.

The formal adoption of this policy, which includes a section on social issues, followed two years of internal discussions among the Board members, including an April 2013 Workshop where Board members indicated strong support both for incorporating social issues and for "engagement." PERS Board Members responses on Relevance/Importance of Social Issues, April 2013")


06.17.2013 IDC Update
IDC sets the record straight regarding CalPERS claim of "engagement completion"

At the June 17th CalPERS Investment Committee meeting, IDC representatives Mikos Fabersunne and David Mandel contested the staff's claims regarding the successful completion of the engagement process with Veolia and Elbit.

The committee was reminded that 1,000 cards were submitted to the staff calling on PERS to respond to Caterpillar's complicity in the violation of Palestinian human rights. IDC also challenged the remarks made at the May meeting by a representative of the Jewish Public Affairs Committee. Click here for the IDC statements.

The statements by the IDC reps were met with a rebuke by the State Treasurer, Bill Lockyer, an ex officio PERS Board member.


05.13.2013 IDC Update
Israel Divestment Campaign Challenges CalPERS to Do the Right Thing

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[Video clips and transcripts of the IDC-related comments at the CalPERS Investment Committee meeting.]

Some 25 IDC activists and supporters, most of whom are CalPERS members, attended the May 13, 2013 CalPERS Investment Committee meeting in Sacramento after first holding a streetside demonstration.

Twelve IDC members from Los Angeles, Chico and the Sacramento area took the Committee/Board to task for chico contingent terminating the engagement process with Elbit and Veolia, and for refusing to investigate Caterpillar's role in Israel's occupation of Palestinian lands and its violation of worker's rights in North America.

Statements from Rabbi Lynne Gottleib of the JVP Rabbinical Council and Methodist ministers Larry George and Michael Yoshi were also read.



Earlier IDC Campaign Updates


BDS News


BDS Opinion Page
BDS Anniversary Special: Movement timeline charting 8 years of successes!

For BDS news, click on a headline below to show more information.

Argentinia suspends contract with Israeli state water company
03.14.14 $170m Argentina loss for Israeli water firm Mekorot as BDS continues to bite
Students at Ireland's National University of Galway pass BDS resolution
03.07.2014 Victory in Galway as NUIG Students' Union votes to join BDS movement
2014 begins with Boycott sucess
01.21.2014 UN year of solidarity with the Palestinian people begins with boycott success
Round-up of BDS successes in 2013
01.10.2014 This round-up was published in conjunction with a Palestinian BDS National Committee statement looking ahead to 2014
Major Dutch pension firm divests from Israeli banks over settlements
01.08.2014 Major Netherlands pension fund will divest from five Israeli banks over their dealings with Jewish settlements on occupied land
Norwegian singer Moddi honors appeal from Gaza to cancel performance in Israel
01.03.2014 Moddi cancels Tel Aviv gig after appeal from Gaza
American Studies Association members vote to support boycott of Israeli academic institutions
12.16.2013 Council Statement on the Academic Boycott of Israel
Native American and Indigenous Studies Association Council unanimously endorses academic boycott
12.15.2013 Declaration of Support for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions
American Studies Association Council unanimously adopts academic boycott of Israeli resolution
12.04.2013 American Studies Association Resolution on Academic Boycott of Israel
Hebrew University Conference Dealt Two Significant Blows
12.03.2013 Statement from Campaign to Boycott the Oral History Conference at Hebrew University of Jerusalem
TIAA-CREF Social Choice Fund Divests from Veolia
11.14.2013 TIAA-CREF removes Veolia Environnement stock from its Social Choice Funds portfolio
Congress of South African Trade Unions urges sanctions against Israel
11..2013 Our government is not accountable to the apartheid state of Israel - COSATU
Second Norwegian University Drops Security Contractor G4S
11.06.2013 University of Bergen drops G4S over support for Israeli apartheid
Palestine activists score win as Veolia pulls out of St. Louis
11.01.2013 St. Louis activists stop Veolia water contract
Academics in Australia fight ongoing Zionist attacks in federal court action
10.30.2013 Academics to fight Federal Court action claiming support for BDS racist
UCLA anti-divestment resolution defeated
10.23.2013 Anti-divestment bill defeated at UCLA
Cornell students protest TCREF at campus talk
10.21.2013 Video: students "mic check" TIAA-CREF head over investment in Israel's occupation
Norwegian union ends G4S contract
10.02.2013 Norwegian union ends G4S contract as "act of solidarity" with Palestinians
Veolia divests from Israeli settlement bus lines
09.30.2013 Veolia transportation firm divests from Israeli settlement bus lines
Hundreds of academics call for boycott of Hebrew University conference in 2014
09.26.2013 Hundreds of Palestinian, Israeli and other oral historians and academics from Europe, South Africa and North America are calling on their colleagues to boycott the June 2014 International Conference on Oral History organized by the Oral History Division of the Avraham Harman Institute of Contemporary Jewry at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
European academics urge EU not to water down its guidelines on Israeli settlement funding ban
09.12.2013 More than 500 academics urge the EU not to backdown on its policy of preventing funding from being awarded to Israeli projects and entities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.
Dutch firm terminates involvement in sewage project in occupied east Jerusalem
09.06.2013 Dutch-based firm withdraws from a sewage treatment project in eastern occupied Jerusalem.
On the Academic Boycott Front: A Pioneering Campaign
09.05.2013 The Hebrew University oral history conference boycott campaign.
International oral historians and other academics call for a boycott of Hebrew University oral history conference
08.12.2013 Call to Boycott the Oral History Conference at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem: Open Letter
South African university charges students who protest against Israeli sponsored concert
07.26.2013 The University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg charges students for protesting Israeli concert
Top Netherlands retail chains ban settlement goods
07.22.2013 Two of country's largest retail chains announce they will not sell more products originating beyond Green Line.
Filmmaker Mira Nair boycotts Israeli apartheid
07.19.2013 The Academy Award nominee and National Film Award recipient refuses invitation as guest of honor at Haifa International Film Festival, stating: "I will go to Israel when the walls come down [and] when the occupation is gone."
Open letter to filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf
07.14.2013 Iranian scholars, artists and activists call on noted filmmaker to boycott the Jerusalem film festival and reject award
TIAA-CREF drops SodaStream
07.14.2013 Retirement Fund Giant TIAA-CREF Drops Controversial Israeli Settlement Company
McDonalds boycotts Ariel settlement
06.27.2013 Burger boycott: McDonalds refuses to open in West Bank Israeli settlement
Four more United Methodist Conferences vote to divest
06.21.2013 Nine United Methodist regional conferences, representing thousands of churches, have now voted to divest from companies involved with Israel's occupation of Palestinian land
Rights activists to Alicia Keys: cancel your concert in Tel Aviv
06.11.2013 A delegation of Palestinian-Americans, representing coalitions of over 500 US organizations, delivered a petition today signed by over 12,000 people calling on Keys to cancel her July 4th concert in Israel.
Dutch settlement profiteers warned
05.31.2013 Involvement in Israel's illegal settlement enterprise may result in criminal prosecution.
Middlebury College students stage checkpoint
05.20.2013 Students call on Middlebury College to divest from Israeli apartheid.
Stephen Hawking joins academic boycott of Israel
05.07.2013 World-renowned theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking endorses academic boycott.
Columbia U and Barnard faculty endorse fund divestment
04.24.2013 Columbia faculty and students press TIAA-CREF to divest from Israeli army-linked corporations.
Divestment win at UC Berkeley stands!
04.23.2013 Landgraf announces no veto on divestment bill SB 160.
Scholarly group supports Israeli academic boycott
04.23.2013 The Association for Asian American Studies is the first U.S.-based academic organization to endorse the boycott of Israeli academic institutions.
British security firm to partially divest
04.22.2013 G4S says it will not renew contracts to provide security systems for West Bank sites.
Berkeley Student Senate passes Israeli divestment bill
04.18.2013 ASUC Berkeley voted 11-9 to divest from companies affiliated with Israel's military.
Australian Student Council endorses academic boycott of Israel
04.13.2013 Student Representative Council (SRC) at the University of Sydney passed a motion endorsing an academic boycott of Israel.
Palestinian unions praise Irish Teachers Union
04.09.2013 Palestinian teachers welcome Teachers' Union of Ireland 'boycott Israel' call.
First academic union in Europe endorses academic boycott of Israel
04.04.2013 Teachers Union of Ireland calls for an academic boycott of Israel in unanimous vote.
Breakthrough: Mennonites divest!
03.27.2013 Mennonites divest from "companies that support Israel's occupation of the West Bank and Gaza."
Musicians to heighten awareness against Israeli apartheid
03.24.2013 Roger Waters pulling together fellow musicians to boycott Israel for crimes against Palestinians.
Zionist anti-boycott litigation in UK fails
03.26.2013 Crushing defeat for Israel lobby as anti-boycott litigation fails in UK.
York University student union passes boycott resolution
03.25.2013 The largest student union in Canada passes a Boycott resolution.
Pink Floyd's Roger Waters calls for boycott of Israel
03.20.2013 The singer plans to publish an open letter to his peers in the music industry asking them to join him in the BDS movement.
UC San Diego students pass divestment resolution
03.14.2013 UCSD Associated Students' council seeks divestment from firms with West Bank ties.
Fear Of BDS spreads to prominent New York synagogue
03.11.2013 An upper west side Manhattan Congregation attempts to cancel a panel discussion on the subject "Israel-Equality-Democracy" lest it lead to a discussion of BDS.
Dutch government joins call of other Europeans to label produce from settlements
03.09.2013 Netherlands becomes latest country to act against trade with illegal Israeli settlements.
UC Riverside students pass divestment measure
03.07.2013 California BDS debate heats up: Riverside campus passes divestment measure as Stanford rejects the same.
Caterpillar exec at AIPAC
02.26.2013 Ten years after Rachel Corrie's killing, AIPAC conference will feature Caterpillar executive.
Veolia withdraws from California water contract bidding
01.11.2013 Veolia Withdraws from California water contract bidding following outcry against its abuses of Palestinian rights.
BDS roundup: the victories of 2012
01.02.2013 Here's a look back at The Electronic Intifada's coverage of the significant BDS victories of 2012.






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