Did BDS Exacerbate the Cape Town Water Crisis?

09 Feb 2018

Cape Town, South Africa, is currently undergoing a record-breaking drought, making it the first major city at risk of running out of water. Residents have being asked to limit their water consumption to 13 gallons per day and “Day Zero,” on which the taps run dry, looms ever closer. In an op-ed on Times of Israel, lawyer and commodities trader Howard Feldman has posited that BDS contributed to the crisis.

In February, 2016, the BDS movement succeeded in scuttling the scheduled Mail & Guardian Water Conference, intended to avert the crisis, because Israel was on the panel. Israel has mastered desalinization and Israeli cities recycle around 85% of their water. Nevertheless, BDS advocates clung to such canards as the claim that Israel steals water from the Palestinians. Prof. Patrick Bond claimed in an interview on Radio Islam, South Africa, that what Israel has accomplished in the field of water conservation could be done by “any child” when, in fact, Israel has famously terraformed barren deserts into blooming orchards and gardens.

At the time, Feldman wrote, “The fact that Southern Africa is experiencing one of the worst droughts in living memory, and that the situation is critical, is not a concern for those who hate Israel. And this comes as no shock to those familiar with BDS standard operating procedure. What does come as a shock is the celebration and joy of the BDS at the cancellation of a conference designed for one purpose in might. To assist the suffering of the African people. And if that doesn’t send a message, then I don’t know what does.”

Israel has since made repeated overtures in an attempt to assist with the Cape Town water crisis.

Read more on Times of Israel