Anti-Israel Boycott Group Demands Netflix Drop ‘Fauda’ for Supporting ‘Colonialism and Apartheid’

“It’s a shame that the BDS movement continues in its campaign of divisiveness,” show producer tells TheWrap

Photo: Ronen Akerman

A movement to boycott Israel is demanding that Netflix drop the hit Israeli show “Fauda” from its platform or face legal action, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Thursday.

In a letter Wednesday, the international Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement, or BDS, cited what they said is the show’s complicity in Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory.

“Fauda,” BDS wrote, serves as “racist propaganda for the Israeli occupying army and displays aggression towards the Palestinian people, and the process it is leading for freedom and independence,” according to a translation by Times of Israel.

The BDS movement is a global campaign aimed at boycotting Israel. Supporters compare it to the anti-Apartheid movement, while critics accuse it of being anti-Semitic.

The letter marks the first time the BDS movement has challenged the series. If Netflix fails to comply with its demands, BDS said it would consider legal action against the series, claiming Netflix is complicit in Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.

“This is a series that is racist against Arabs and that encourages violating international law and human rights — which could lead us to take legal actions against Netflix,” the letter said.

BDS also accuses series creators Lior Raz and Avi Issacharoff of supporting “the machinery of the occupation, Israeli colonialism and apartheid.”

A spokeswoman for Netflix declined to comment. Reached by phone, Raz told TheWrap that he wasn’t too worried.

“We want to thank the BDS movement for all the great P.R. they’re giving us right now,” he said. “We will continue to create quality shows for Israelis, the Western World and the Arab world.”

Liat Benasuly-Amit, the show’s producer, told TheWrap in a statement: “It’s a shame that the BDS movement continues in its campaign of divisiveness and hatred toward Israelis instead of focusing on other messages. It’s a shame they don’t see the messages we get from people in Turkey, Qatar, Dubai and other Arab countries who talk about how this series opened their eyes in regards to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. People who once hated anything to do with Israel have been exposed to the complexity of the conflict and the humanity on both sides.”

“Fauda,” an Israeli drama about an elite Israeli undercover commando unit operating in the West Bank, was bought by Netflix in 2016 and has quickly garnered a fierce following around the world.

The show, produced by Israeli Satellite provider Yes, has been hailed as a game-changer by both Israeli and Palestinian fans for showing both sides of the conflict. But anti-occupation activists have argued that the show fails to show the real hardships facing Palestinians.
As TheWrap reported exclusively, Netflix announced “Fauda’s” highly- anticipated second season will be released on May 24.