Israeli students and academics sent a letter to Ben & Jerry’s accusing it of illegally occupying land in Vermont that once belonged to the Abenaki native American tribe.
The letter, which was obtained by the New York Post, was signed by over 1,000 Israeli students and academics affiliated with Students for Justice in America, and was supported by Shurat HaDin, an Israeli NGO.
“We have concluded that your company’s occupation of the Abenaki lands is illegal and we believe it is wholly inconsistent with the stated values that Ben & Jerry’s purports to maintain,” the students wrote. “Ironically, in July of the last year you announced that you would discontinue the sale of your products in Israel because you object to the Jewish State allegedly occupying Palestinian territories.”
“Ben and Jerry’s has never even offered to provide compensation to this indigenous nation in Vermont. Justice, morality and boycotts are not just slogans and antisemitic weapons for your food company to point at the Jewish community in Israel. Justice and morality must begin at home.”
The students also demanded that Ben & Jerry’s immediately evacuate the territories it occupies in Vermont and “return them to the Abenaki people”, stating, “your company has no right to these stolen territories.”
“Ben & Jerry’s blatant hypocrisy has now been revealed by these Israeli students,” said Shurat HaDin president, Nitsana Darshan Leitner. “Ben and Jerry’s speak with a forked tongue.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)