Spartans for Israel hosted Bassem Eid (center in black) on Feb. 9.
Spartans for Israel hosted Bassem Eid (center in black) on Feb. 9.

Spartans for Israel hosted Palestinian journalist Bassem Eid.

On Feb. 9, Spartans for Israel were fortunate enough to host Bassem Eid at Michigan State University, where he gave his unique perspective on the Israel-Palestinian conflict. 

Eid is a Palestinian journalist and human rights activist who was born and raised in the United Nations Refugee Works Agency (UNRWA) refugee camp of Shuafat in East Jerusalem. He rose to prominence during the first Intifada as a senior field researcher for B’Tselem.

Bassem Eid
Bassem Eid

In 1996, in response to the deterioration of the human rights situation under the Palestinian Authority (PA), he founded the Jerusalem-based Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group, which is a nonpartisan human rights organization dedicated to exposing human rights violations and supporting a democratic and pluralistic Palestine. In 2016, Eid assumed the role of chairman of the Center for Near East Policy Research.

Bassem Eid has spent 26 years researching UNRWA policies and has written extensively on the subject of UNRWA reform. He also is an outspoken critic of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, otherwise known as BDS. 

During the conversation, Bassem explained how the BDS movement actually harms Palestinian civilians more than it helps them, and he described his decision to take Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream Company to court after it announced its removal of factories and goods from Israel. 

While the BDS movement is active in the United States and around the world, Eid argues that their victories are actively eliminating jobs for Palestinians who work in Israel. “I don’t believe that these people are seeking any peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians,” said Bassem in reference to the motives of the BDS movement.

Spartans for Israel is very grateful to Bassem Eid for coming to campus and sharing his personal experiences and perspectives with Michigan State students. 

Ethan Price is a sophomore at Michigan State from Sterling Heights. 

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