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Alex Joffe

Alex Joffe

Editor SPME / BDS Monitor

Alexander H. Joffe is an archaeologist and historian specializing in the Middle East and contemporary international affairs. He received a B.A. in History from Cornell University in 1981 and Ph.D. in Near Eastern Studies from the University of Arizona in 1991. From 1980 to 2003 he participated in and directed archaeological research in Israel, Jordan, Greece and the United States. Joffe taught at the Pennsylvania State University and Purchase College, and has been Director of Research for Global Policy Exchange, Ltd., and The David Project, Center for Jewish Leadership.

Joffe's work is uniquely broad. Since 1991 he has published dozens of studies on the archaeology of the Eastern Mediterranean and is a leading figure in contentious debates over the relationship between archaeology and politics in the Middle East. He has also authored numerous works on contemporary issues, including Middle Eastern environmental security threats from pollution and weapons of mass destruction. His work on the problem of dismantling intelligence agencies is widely cited by experts and democratic reformers alike.

In the past decade Joffe has written and spoken on topics as varied as the future of American Jews, the Palestinian refugee problem, and nationalism. During that time as well he has been deeply involved with combating the problems of campus antisemitism, the ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions' movement against Israel, and in educating Jews and others about threats to Israel and the West. His current projects include a biography of a British World War II general and several novels. He and his family reside near New York City.

All stories by: Alex Joffe

BDS-led discrimination against Jewish groups grows on campus but fuels backlash. European Union labeling aimed at Israeli communities across the “Green Line” continues but more countries reject guidelines as local restrictions on BDS increase.

  2015 ended with BDS supporters co-opting more campus governments and causes to discriminate against Jewish students. At the same time, more BDS resolutions were defeated and steps taken to prevent student governments from adopting Israel boycotts. These signs suggest…

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American anthropologists vote to recommend Israel boycott as campus BDS becomes more confrontational and overtly antisemitic. European Union announces labeling for Israel ‘settlement’ products, generating backlash.

The academic BDS scene deteriorated further in November as American anthropologists voted to recommend an Israel boycott to the full membership. At the same time campus tactics are becoming more openly antisemitic and confrontational. European boycott efforts moved forward with…

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BDS supporters back violent attacks against Israelis, as ties with ‘Black Lives Matters’ and the far left increase. British cultural figures make public statement against Israel boycotts while British academics come out in favor.

Escalating violence against Israelis in September was cheering by BDS supporters, especially on campuses and social media. The disappearing pretense of the BDS movement’s support for non-violence demonstrates that, in the manner of Palestinian politics generally, radical voices pull the…

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BDS at universities off to slow start but questions emerge about informal boycotts. European labeling of “settlement” products closer but Iceland boycott partially withdrawn

In September there were a number of international BDS incidents. The Reykjavik city council’s decision to boycott all Israeli products was quickly ridiculed; now only “settlement” products will be boycotted. But European Union labeling of Israeli products from “settlements” now…

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Clinton statement brings BDS into presidential campaign while Kerry threatens Israel with isolation for opposing Iran agreement. European Union BDS threats are balanced by non-binding statements from national leaders. BDS in US churches shows mixed results.

July saw the conclusion of an agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program, and focus is being shifted back to the Arab-Israeli conflict. With it are explicit threats that Israel will be blamed and isolated if the US Congress blocks the…

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Campus BDS suffers setbacks; US state legislatures move to prohibit Israel boycotts but Palestinian threats to have Israel expelled from international soccer appear ready to materialize.

Introduction BDS on campuses ended the year with limited gains and important setbacks. The fight has also moved decisively into state legislatures, which are voting in favor of bills prohibiting agencies from doing business with firms boycotting Israel. But internationally…

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