Friday, August 11, 2017 10:47AM
Anti-boycott act doesn’t limit free speech

To the editor,

Glad that Maggie Hassan has co-sponsored the Israel Anti Boycott Act (Senate Bill 720). Let me explain why this bill does not limit free speech. The new ACLU claims that doing business with a foreign country (or not doing business) is a form of free speech. If business is speech, then US sanctions against Russia and Cuba are unconstitutional. The U.S. is deprived of an effective instrument of foreign policy. Whether you agree or disagree with U.S. sanctions against Russia or Cuba, only your right to do business is restricted. Sanctions do not limit your right to speak on TV, radio, newspapers, or any other forum.

When the U.S. government declares trade sanctions against a foreign country, you have the unlimited right to argue for or against the sanctions. The majority of the American people see that Arab dictators are responsible for the lack of freedom and prosperity in Arab lands, not Israel.

I worked at Mobil Oil HQ during the Arab boycott of Israel. I knew that the King of Saudi Arabia ordered an investigation of any Mobil employee scheduled to work in Saudi Arabia. Mobil did not discriminate against its Jewish employees. But, somehow the Saudi Arabian government found out which Mobil employees were Jewish, and prevented them from entering the one country essential to Mobil Oil’s profitability.

I have Arab friends. Most individual Jews and Arabs have much in common. The BDS movement is only a temporary tool used by dictators to distract their own subjects. Arab leaders don’t apply the Boycott of Israel to themselves.

When they face serious medical issues, some with little publicity go to Israel for medical care.

Mark Wisan