Premise: The economies of terrorist-sponsoring states are almost entirely dependent on the revenues, expertise and advanced equipment and technology provided by global publicly traded companies in which millions of Americans own stock. Accordingly, a basic premise of DivestTerror.org is that some, if not all, of these governments would likely choose to end their support for terrorism before suffering an economic collapse catalyzed by the withdrawal of these public companies.
Such was the experience in an earlier application of financial leverage — the South African divestment campaign. Pressed by the withdrawal of public companies whose share value and reputations were under withering attack by anti-apartheid activists, the government in Cape Town ultimately abandoned its racist policies and surrendered power.
Objective: To dissuade public companies from continuing to provide vital life-support (i.e., revenues, equipment, technology, etc.) to terrorist-sponsoring states, thereby forcing those governments to choose between their ongoing sponsorship of terrorism and an economic meltdown.
It is a little-known fact that some 400 large multinational and American corporations have demonstrated their determination to place profits ahead of ethical and terrorism-related concerns. That calculation must be changed.
Toward that end, a grassroots campaign will be mounted to pressure leading institutional investors, asset managers and universities to use their financial leverage to divest the stock of any publicly traded company doing business in terrorist-sponsoring states. The campaign will seek to create sustained shareholder insistence that public companies that help underwrite terrorist-sponsoring governments are presented with a stark choice: Become part of the solution to state-sponsored terror or suffer significant financial consequences.