Jack Ma, CEO of Alibaba, has described Israel as “incredible“, a very neat follow up to a recent post, where the question was posed “what makes Israel so different?”.

I raise the issue because this week the Holy Land is yet again forced to defend itself against its verbal protagonists. The Israeli act is one of the leading contenders in the Eurovision Song Contest, which will be screened this week to hundreds of millions of people globally. Those haters of the Jewish State from the BDS campaign are reportedly targeting the event, demanding a boycott of Israeli culture.

I do not intend to spend yet more time, explaining why BDS is so segregationist. Certainly, its proponents spend little time on the evils of North Korea or elsewhere. What is of more interest is how Israel is having such a positive role in the world’s commercial and cultural life. Just look at this series of events, all news items over the past few days.

  1. Giro d’Italia. For the first time, part of this magnificent race was held outside Europe, hosted for three days this month in Israel. 175 riders competed from 22 teams. The exposure of hundreds of journalists, as well as the TV scheduling into millions of homes in cycing enthusiasts was a phenomenal achievement.
  2. Whisky Live, Tel Aviv. For the fourth time, Tel Aviv played host to numerous distilleries from Scotland. Israel is proving to be a small but growing part of their export industry, as imports have risen over 300% in the last five years.
  3. Also coming to Israel is a Beetle, Ringo Starr. He has just added a second date to his June schedule in Tel Aviv.
  4. Arriving in Israel this week are the delegates to Israel’s premier Agritech exhibition. Israel is a country with over 750 start ups in the agri-food sector. No wonder that there will be representatives from over 100 countries, which means several are based in places which do not recognise Israel officially.
  5. Frutarom is an Israeli company that has sought to grow through acquisitions. Now the boot is on the other foot, as International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. jumped into a rush of dealmaking in the food-flavoring industry, agreeing to buy Israel’s Frutarom Industries Ltd.for $7.1 billion including debt.
  6. And for the last item, I run off to Indonesia, the largest Muslim country in the world. The authorities have agreed to issue visas to Israeli tourists, a complete slap in the face for BDS.

I have not had time to mention the three embassies that are about to move to Jerusalem.  And so the list goes on.

By the way, if for one moment you thought that all of these changes only applied to one sector of the population, I caution you. Just see who are the prime buyers in the new luxury car market in Israel!