The Palestinian Authority is running a television ad calling on Arab children to boycott all Israeli goods. The ad is the latest step in a campaign that began with a boycott of goods produced by Jews living in Judea and Samaria.
In the PA ad, translated by Palestinian Media Watch, a young boy walks into a store and overhears the shopkeeper discussing a boycott of Israeli goods. The shopkeeper says that he cannot join the boycott because his customers prefer Israeli products.
The boy then decides to buy a bag of “Israeli chips”, but hears gunfire as he turns to leave, pauses, and returns and asks for “the Palestinian product.”
The clip ends by exhorting viewers, “Don't prolong the occupation's life upon our land.”
The ads were paid for by the Spanish government, the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Spain's governmental humanitarian aid development organization, AECID.
Spain has taken an anti-Israel stance on various issues in the past. It previously threatened to prosecute several Israeli political and military leaders over the 2002 assassination of Hamas arch-terrorist Salah Shehadeh. In 2009, Spain disqualified an Israeli university team from an international conference after ruling that the team from Samaria was based in “occupied territory.”
Spain's economy took a hit in the global economic downturn and the EU member debtl crises, and its public deficit soared to become the third-highest in Europe, behind Iceland and Greece. The government has pushed through unpopular austerity measures, including higher sales tax and a pay cut for public workers.
The PA's boycott of Israeli goods has gradually expanded. It began with a ban on buying or selling goods created by Israelis in Judea and Samaria – a ban that was not protested by the media and even encouraged by some of the Israeli left-- and was accompanied by the seizure and public burning of many tons of goods and produce.
It then grew to include a ban on working for Israelis in Judea and Samaria. Abbas attempted to create a fund to pay PA Arabs who left their jobs in Israel and promised that the work on the PA city of Rawabi would provide employment. However, that proposed ban has not been put into action due to worker protests; instead, more PA workers were employed by Israelis as of the end of 2010 than in 2009.
PA leaders recently announced that they will attempt to force Israeli firms to join the anti-Israel boycott, by insisting that all firms that sign contract to build a new PA city agree not to buy from firms with offices in Judea and Samaria.