While my arteries may be happy, it pains me to say this: I will be boycotting Ben & Jerry's and, to the extent I can keep track of their myriad holdings, the ice cream company's parent company, Unilever. I will be urging others to do the same. (Ben & Jerry's is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Unilever. In an unusual arrangement, Ben & Jerry's is run by its own "independent" board.)
Ben & Jerry's announced that it is boycotting the "Occupied Palestinian Territories." It's announcement is vague and confusing, which probably reflects the lack of in-depth knowledge and the confusion of those making this ill-advised decision.
Does the announcement apply to every inch of the land beyond the 1949 armistice lines, including Jewish neighborhoods and communities that, until the Obama Administration referred to everything beyond those lines as "settlements," everyone, including the Palestinian Authority, understood would be included in Israel under any two-state agreement?
Does it include Jerusalem neighborhoods to the north and south of the city center that straddle the "Green Line" and that were established to provide a buffer after travelers on the road into Jerusalem were constantly harassed and bombarded by Jordanian forces when they controlled the hilltops surrounding the narrow corridor pre-1967?
Does it include Gaza, the territory Israel withdrew from in 2005 but which the anti-Israel/pro-boycott choirs now applauding still refer to as "occupied?"
Does it refer to all of eastern Jerusalem, or just the shops and apartments with mezuzahs?
Does it mean that the shops in that part of the Jerusalem neighborhood of Abu Tor that are on the west side of the 1949 armistice lines (which no one recognized as a final border) go on selling Ben & Jerry's while those on the east side of the line do not? Same question regarding Beit Safafa and Talpiot and a host of other neighborhoods.
If so, watch out for a Saturday night stampede. Funny--I can continue to buy my car tires in Beit Safafa, but not my Ben & Jerry's sugar rush.
Does it mean that all of the Palestinian neighborhoods, towns and shops, and millions of Palestinians, the great majority of whom are under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority, will no longer be able to buy Chubby Hubby and Chunky Monkey?