The title is from a long piece by Howard Jacobsen in The Independent (of all unlikely places) about the UK academic boycott of Israel and Israelis (h/t The Augean Stables).
To rub it in - and this would be childish were it not villainous - the UCU resolution includes proposals to "organise a UK-wide campus tour for Palestinian academics/educational trade unionists". In other words, we will hear them, we will not hear you. Anyone familiar with the emotional politics of the campus will be able to imagine the rapturous applause awaiting these Palestinian educational trade unionists - given free rein to vent their grievances while the other side of the argument is gagged;
(about the Six Day War):
It is probably futile to imagine what would have happened had victory gone the other way. But it is not unreasonable to suppose that had the Arab countries won decisively Israel would not exist. Annihilation has, after all, been (as it continues to be) the declared aim of most of the states and organisations that surround it;
about a boycott were the shoe on the other foot:
Whether the enlightened Universities of Birmingham and Brighton would have enforced an academic boycott of these conquering Arab countries, we can only guess. But since there are many Arab countries, in actual as opposed to imaginary existence, whose practices one might think deserving of a boycott but who have so far escaped one, I think we have to guess not;
about Israel's behaviour:
In the present climate, however, it is almost impossible to make the case that some of Israel's most detested actions (I do not say all) are themselves responses to provocations. At a certain stage the pieces are pushed from the table. Israel can make no legitimate response to a provocation because Israel is not itself legitimate.
about `rights of audience' for Israeli academics:
An Israeli scholar dare not be in even the most partial agreement with his government. For an Israeli academic not to think exactly as they think on the campuses of Birmingham and Brighton is to be guilty of a crime for which the punishment is expulsion from the international community of thought.
It is the last of these which makes me most ashamed as an academic and scholar. Unfortunately, I am unable to resign from the UCU as I have never been a member.