Boycott Watch  
April 25, 2012
Palm Oil, Kosher Certification and the Arab Boycott of Israel
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Summary: Boycott Watch finds it ironic that palm oil produced in nations which boycott Israel may become a certified kosher ingredient.
   Boycott Watch has often wondered why palm-oil has received a kosher certification. After all, the two primary countries which produce it, Malaysia and Indonesia, both boycott Israel, a topic raised in the book Boycotting Peace written by Fred Taub, President of Boycott Watch.

   This is not to encourage a boycott war, but the fact is, Indonesia is 86.1% Muslim and refuses to establish diplomatic relations with Israel. Malaysia, which also has no diplomatic relations with Israel, is 60.4% Muslim and its prime minister accuses critics as being "Zionist agents," a clear indication of hated of Israel in both nations.

   There is a specific reason the Islamic connection is important here. Yasser Arafat was actively working to promote the Arab boycott in Malaysia while negotiating a peace treaty with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and President Clinton. This illustrated both there was no intention of good faith peace negotiation on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, and that non-Arab Muslim nations, such as Malaysia and Indonesia, were solicited to become the new front in the Arab war against Israel. Palm oil, a primary export, has therefore become an economic weapon in the war against Israel by getting Jews to inherently support nations that hate Jews, yet getting Jews to support nations that hate Israel via increased sale of a food because of its kosher certification.

   Demand for palm oil, which is used as a key ingredient in everything from processed food to lipstick, has increased over the years because cheap labor keeps the price down. Now comes Unilever, the food and consumer products giant, which according to the Wall Street Journal article Tuesday, April 24, 2012 titled "Unilever Takes Palm Oil in Hand" is preparing an expansion in Indonesia with environmental safety and sustainability as the key production mission. Boycott Watch has no doubt Unilever will seek kosher certification for the new plant.

   Knowing how the primary palm oil production countries not only refuse to recognize Israel's existence but even work to benefit the enemies of Israel, it is difficult to believe that any kosher certification agency would want to work with Unilever to certify that palm oil as kosher.

   The Arab boycott of Israel dates back to 1910 with the intention of starving out the Jews before Israel could be established. In 1921 the Arab Congress for was formed with the specific objective of coordinating all boycotts against the Jews. After the Arab states were formed, it was renamed the League of Arab States, or Arab League as it is more commonly known. Even today, the primary function of the Arab League is their boycott of Israel which they reaffirm in every meeting.

   "As I explain in my book Boycotting Peace," the Arab boycott of Israel is not only the longest running boycott, but it is designed to prevent peace and is the root of the Arab-Israel conflict" said Fred Taub, President of Boycott Watch. "The fact is you can't have peace with anyone who will not sit down with you for a cup of coffee, thus any support of the Arab boycott, including encouraging the economies of nations sworn to boycott Israel, is anti-peace. I therefore find it ironic that any kosher certification organization would even consider a kosher certification for palm oil from a nation that boycotts Israel.

    Despite Israeli efforts to establish peace with both Indonesia and Malaysia, including a 1993 visit by then Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin to meet Indonesian President Suharto in Jakarta, there has been no reciprocation to achieve peace. One may say that certifying that palm oil kosher opens a bridge between Jews, Israel and the palm oil producing nations. Palm oil, however, is also produced in nations that do not boycott Israel, such as Columbia and Thailand thus the certification agencies are able to source the product as a kosher ingredient from nations that are friendly to Israel. Jews and anyone supporting Middle-East peace, therefore, would be right to demand the kosher certification agencies only certify palm oil which is produced in nations friendly to Israel.

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