Hold the presses! The Quakers are divesting from firms doing business with Israel. Maybe the famed smile of the Quaker Oats Man should now turn to a frown. Specifically the Quaker Friends Fiduciary Corporation (FFC) is divesting from Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Veolia Environment. Ostensibly HP was guilty of providing technology consulting to the Israeli Navy, while Veolia was convicted for “environmental and social concerns.”
Naturally, the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation gushed that it was “thrilled” that FFC was the “first U.S. national fund” to divest from those firms in reaction to demands from “Palestinian rights advocates.”
“Thrilled,” no doubt. Anti-Israel divestment advocacy has largely been a dud in the U.S. Just this Summer, three major denominations rejected divestment, though the Episcopalians, Presbyterians and United Methodists are all governed by elites who routinely condemn Israel (but not its foes). There are only about 80,000 Quakers in North America. Their spokespersons are heatedly anti-Israel. Quakers are traditionally pacifist of course. But Quaker ire does not typically focus on Hamas or Hezbollah terror, nor on the violent threats of Israel’s neighbors.