Israel’s booming technological sector has long been a luring field for American start-ups and established giants, including Google, Amazon, and Apple. In 2019, US firms accounted for 80 percent of all purchases by Israeli tech companies.
American Big Tech firms are being pressured to re-asses their strong connections with israel by pro-Palestinian activists – and by their own employees – amid the recent round of hostilities between the Israeli military and the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, according to Politico.
On 21 May, a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel ended 11 days of conflict, which was triggered by Tel Aviv restricting Palestinians visiting the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City during Ramadan, and by the decision of Israel’s Supreme Court to evict six Palestinian families from their homes in East Jerusalem’s Arab district of Sheikh Jarrah. However, the recent wave of tension fuelled calls from the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BSD) movement, which has long been pressuring world governments and businesses to cut ties with israel.
At Google, a group of Jewish staffers has been circulating a letter addressed to CEO Sundar Pichai and the firm’s executives calling for a review of its “business contracts and corporate donations” – they also want the company to support Palestinian rights. The letter urges Google to terminate “contracts with institutions that support Israeli violations of Palestinian rights, such as the…