Fighting foreign boycotts against Israel is "not a burden or even a challenge. It is an honor," World Jewish Congress (WJC) President Ronald S. Lauder said last week.
His comments came during his keynote speech at a dinner co-hosted by Lauder and President of BICOM and trustee of the Jewish Leadership Council Poju Zabludowicz.
"We will send the message that a campaign against Israel is a double-edge sword," said Lauder. "We are not powerless - far from it. We have the resources. We have the intelligence... Most important, we have unbounded determination."
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Lauder's WJC has been particularly active in combating the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment (BDS) movement in university campuses, where the organization set up the Global Campus Initiative (GCI).
The GCI was founded in 2013, working together with the World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS) and the European Union of Jewish Students (EUJS). The initiative works to take measures to prevent and counter the effects of boycotts and attempts at delegitimizing the State of Israel in school campuses around the world.
A newsletter from the WJC said that GCI supported "Give Peace Wings," organized by the South African Union of Jewish Students as a pro-Israel response to Israel Apartheid Week. The joint project also hosted an anti-boycott training session that lasted for a day at the WUJS' annual Jerusalem in December 2013.
The speech by Lauder called on other Jewish leaders in the community to take more active roles in the fight, telling them that it may well be the most important thing that they would ever do.
Lauder also stressed the importance of fighting campaigns to delegitimize Israel through legal means and public opinion.
According to the WJC, the dinner's list of speakers included the Israeli ambassador to the UK, Daniel Taub, Intelligence and Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz, and British lawmaker Alistair Burt.