The following letter was sent today to Australian-based, Israeli chocolate company Max Brenner by a non-Jewish reader of my website:
I reside in Melbourne and have heard from many about your delicious chocolate beverage etc. I finally made a visit to your outlet in Glen Waverley a few years back, but discovered that the chocolate products were made in Israel. I am aware of the illegal occupation of land by Israeli citizens with the support of successive Israeli governments and note that some of the community projects supported by the Strauss group that has 100% ownership of your company involve explicit support of the Israeli military.
“Our connection with soldiers goes as far back as the country, and even further. We see a mission and need to continue to provide our soldiers with support, to enhance their quality of life and service conditions, and sweeten their special moments. We have adopted the Golani reconnaissance platoon for over 30 years and provide them with an ongoing variety of food products for their training or missions, and provide personal care packages for each soldier that completes the path. We have also adopted the Southern Shualei Shimshon troops from the Givati platoon with the goal of improving their service conditions and being there at the front to spoil them with our best products.”
With the recent massacre of civilians in Gaza by the Israeli armed forces under the command of the Israeli government, I will have no choice but to continue to boycott your products and feel obligated to make even greater efforts to urge members of my family, friends, and community to do the same.
While your company may “sweeten” the moments of Israeli soldiers, I hope you are equally aware of the “bitterness” your company has helped to create. These words are simply euphemisms for the heinous crimes – eg. here, here and here carried out by organisations your company has helped support.
I strongly urge your company to re-evaluate its sense of corporate responsibility and ethics and to paraphrase the current President of the United States of America, strive towards helping us all move away from the “wrong side of history“.
In solidarity with those seeking a just, true and lasting peace for Israel, Palestine and all peoples of the world.