We spoke at Durham City Council (DCC) meetings and work sessions about the harm their boycott of training with Israeli police was doing to the local Jewish community and to the wider Durham community. We also spoke at the State of North Carolina Human Relations Commission about the damage the DCC and Durham HRC actions had done to Durham and our Jewish community. We asked the NC HRC to recommend endorsement by the North Carolina Congress of the US State Department definition of AntiSemitism, which may help deter future government-sponsored harms to Israel and our Jewish community.
Within two weeks of the DCC passing their boycott resolution, antiSemitic flyers were posted around Duke University and downtown Durham. Since then, there have been antisemitic flyers and symbols such as swastikas posted also in neighboring towns, including around North Carolina State University in Raleigh and UNC-Chapel Hill.
The JVP “Deadly Exchange” resolution to boycott Israeli police training was part of a platform the DCC refer to as “Durham Beyond Policing.” The bizarre premise of this initiative is that if you give people homes, jobs, and food, then there will be no more crime and no need for police. Sharing best practices of policing is something that should be left to the expertise of the police. Durham’s Police Chief, CJ Davis, trained with the Israeli police prior to taking the Durham job, and she has made clear that they were not taught to mistreat citizens. Rather, the exchange was for leadership training, and had nothing to do with police operations. Chief Davis understands how valuable the Israeli training would be to her police force. Click here to view video.