blog-BDS-WISSAM-NASSAR-MaanImages.jpg

(Wissam Nassar / Maan Images)

Activists burst occupation profiteer SodaStream’s “feel-good” bubble

Boycott SodaStream Days of Action, Nov. 29 to Dec. 10, 2013

Want to buy a product with a “feel-good message about saving money and the planet”?

Then the advice from Wired magazine for the year-end consumption binge (also known as the “Holiday Season”) is to buy a SodaStream home carbonation machine.

Wired names SodaStream one of its 2013 “Editor’s Picks” without mentioning the fact that the soft-drink machine is manufactured in Maale Adumim, one of Israel’s illegal West Bank colonies where Palestinian workers, with few other options under brutal Israeli military occupation, have said they are treated “like slaves.”

SodaStream also managed to get its product promoted as one of the “favorite things” of celebrity Whoopi Goldberg, host of the ABC chat show The View.

But far from saving the planet, Israel’s unregulated industrial zones built illegally on Palestinian land are destroying the environment and causing sickness in nearby Palestinian communities.

SodaStream days of action

As the occupation-profiteering company steps up its aggressive marketing, activists are also gearing up for the Boycott SodaStream Days of Action from 29 November to 10 December.

The brief video above highlights retailers such as Target, which claim to uphold “the highest ethical standards,” and yet sell SodaStream products whose profits “reinforce a system of brutal ethnic segregation.”

The video features shots of the prison-like conditions Palestinian workers must navigate to get to jobs where they enjoy no rights or protections. (You can see more images of Palestinian workers’ everyday nightmare at Israeli checkpoints in Daniel Tepper’s recent photostory for The Electronic Intifada.)

De-shelve SodaStream

The video urges people to “Join the coalition of Christians, Muslims and Jews, and many others, asking shoppers to boycott SodaStream and asking Target and others stores to de-shelve SodaStream products.”

Coordinated by the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, the members of the “SodaStream Boycott Interfaith Coalition” are listed at the end of the video.

The US Campaign offers information on upcoming actions and suggestions for those who wish to join the campaign.

The coalition also has its own website (sodastreamboycott.org) with news and photos of actions around the country.

Counter-branding

Some activists are using social media to spread the message about SodaStream’s occupation profiteering and participation in Israel’s crimes.

Israeli boycott activist Ronnie Barkan, for instance, tweeted these images and messages at the company and at Whoopi Goldberg.

They don’t show it in such a pleasant greenwashed light:

on Twitter

on Twitter

Comments

I am concerned about the fate of the Palestinian workers who may/will find themselves jobless as the result of a successful boycott of SodaStream products. I do support the BDS campaign, but I'd also like to know what measures, if any, are being taken to alleviate the plight of the Palestinians who may end up -- at least for some years -- suffering the added tragedy of lost jobs and lost income.

The Palestinians inaugurated BDS themselves, so no need to be concerned.

Vaska, You need to read the following article, which hopefully is still in the Electronic Intifada archive:
SodaStream "Treats Us Like Slaves," says Palestinian factory worker
By Stephanie Westbrook The Electronic Intifada Rome 9 May 2013
This article documents the actual situation of the workers at the factory, and once you read more about their plight you will likely support the SodaStream boycott effort!

Do you actually believe the workers there are treated like slaves? Or is it really just another propaganda ploy?