Starbucks and BDS

The issue of starbucks comes up repetitively in BDS discussions, and I think it’s relevant to listen to what Starbucks has to say on the issue.

Here’s the key bit:

Is it true that Starbucks provides financial support to Israel?
No. This is absolutely untrue. Rumors that Starbucks Coffee Company provides financial support to the Israeli government and/or the Israeli Army are unequivocally false. Starbucks is a publicly held company and as such, is required to disclose any corporate giving each year through a proxy statement. In addition, articles in the London Telegraph (U.K.), New Straits Times (Malaysia), and Spiked (online) provide an outside perspective on these false rumors.

Has Starbucks ever sent any of its profits to the Israeli government and/or Israeli army?
No. This is absolutely untrue.

Is it true that Starbucks is teaming with other American corporations to send their last several weeks of profits to the Israeli government and/or the Israeli Army?
No. This is absolutely untrue.

The fact Starbucks puts this kind of information on their page should be seen as a victory for BDS. I’m not saying we should all go out and support Starbucks. We might as individuals supporting BDS dislike the CEO of Starbucks, Howard Schultz who in 1998 was awarded an “Israel 50th Anniversary Tribute Award” from the Jerusalem Fund of Aish Ha-Torah for “playing a key role in promoting a close alliance between the United States and Israel”. Also, according to the Arab American News, Shultz “has championed and funded defense of Israel on U.S. university campuses.” In other words, Shultz has been actively involved in countering the work that anti-zionist activists (and even liberal-zionist peace activists) on American university campuses do when they criticize the US-Israeli relationship and ongoing Israeli colonization and crimes against humanity.
But, BDS is not about targeting individual, even if well connected, Zionists. It is not about boycotting people we don’t like, even people who try to work against us – it is about a principled and consistent economic withdrawal from companies, academic institutions, and cultural performers, who support the Israeli apartheid regime and help wash its international image. 

One Comment

  1. And Starbucks falls into this category because of it’s connections to criminal Zionism…regardless if it appears to only be targeting one individual…which it isn’t, when you get right down to it…


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