So here's my union, the NUJ, voting to boycott Israel. A few thoughts:
1. How feeble and irrelevant. What difference will it make to anything?
2. The motion was passed on a vote of 66 to 54 out of a union of some 40,000 people. Democratic?
2. Why does a journalists' union need to have a foreign policy? How is it going to help low-paid journalists, or help deal with the transition from print to new media - the two issues that, quite rightly, are key planks of NUJ policy?
3. If the union does need a foreign policy, why is it singling out Israel for criticism while, as far as I can tell, having nothing to say about China, Sudan, Egypt, Iran, Cuba, Russia or any other regime where human rights are trampled underfoot? I'm generally resistant to the view that anti-semitism is alive and well in Left-wing politics, but sometimes I wonder.
3. Why do I bother belonging to a union that feels the need for this sort of pathetic, student-union posturing?
Ironically, as the NUJ is voting to boycott Israel, the Palestinian journalists' union has been boycotting its own government and presidency in protest at its failure to act to free Alan Johnston, the kidnapped BBC journalist.
The NUJ has spoken up strongly on the Alan Johnston case but the minority who voted to boycott Israel might want to consider the difference between the Palestinian journalists' act of principled solidarity and their own pissy political posturing.
Israel Matzav: Britain's National Union of Journalists votes to boycott Israel