Starbucks, the well known coffee company known for its pro-Israel stance, announced once contributing £100,000 to Oxfam‚s rural development programme in the East Harare coffee growing region of Ethiopia, but Oxfam, an international organization dedicated to finding long-term solutions to poverty, hunger, and social injustice worldwide, decided to severe its links with Starbucks, the purveyor of the world's finest coffee with 4,709 locations around the world.
„Starbucks‚ chair Howard Schultz is an active Zionist whose own activities include running propaganda seminars on behalf of Israel across campuses in both North America and Israel.‰
Oxfam denied allegations that Muslim groups were behind its decision to terminate its collaboration with coffee conglomerate Starbucks.
In a Financial Times article published on 4 March 2005, Oxfam acknowledged that it had „received criticism and protest letters from Muslim organisations but said its decision was the result of a change in strategic thinking in its Make Trade Fair campaign. ŒAt the time we signed our agreement with Starbucks UK, we looked into allegations of the company‚s relations with the Israeli Defence Force and other similar claims and found nothing that could justify ending our collaboration. That remains the case,‚ said Phil Bloomer, head of Oxfam‚s Make Trade Fair campaign.‰
Oxfam claimed that its partnership with Starbucks was only intended as a one-year initiative.
Since Oxfam announced its partnership with Starbucks last October, a Boycott Israel Campaign has lobbied against the organisation, accusing it of double standards.
"The collaboration with Starbucks was always a one-year agreement and as an organisation with finite resources we need to ensure that we're working in ways that will have the most impact," said an Oxfam spokesman.
"This has led to our decision not to focus exclusively on a partnership with one corporation but to broaden out our focus to include different coffee companies and other areas of fair trade."
But whether Oxfam‚s motioned reason for severing ties with Starbucks is true remains in question.
In 1998 Howard Schultz was honored by the Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah with "The Israel 50th Anniversary Friend of Zion Tribute Award" for his great support to the Jewish state by "playing a key role in promoting close alliance between the United States and Israel".
The Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah is known for funding Israeli arms fairs chaired by the Israeli transportation Minister and former Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz.
Schultz had also been praised by the Israeli Foreign Ministry as being key to Israel's long-term PR success.
While the Israeli army was committing war crimes against Palestinians in Jenin, Nablus and Bethlehem, Schultz, explicitly accused the Palestinians of supporting „terrorism‰, and claimed that their Intifada, or uprising, was a manifestation of anti- Semitism.
Starbucks helped Israel's floundering economy and invested in Israel - a joint venture with Israeli conglomerate Delek Group for Starbucks outlets in Israel.
But the coffee company made heavy losses. And in April 2003, it announced that all its 6 cafes in Israel will be shut down and that it has ended its partnership with Delek.
However, numerous sources revealed that Starbucks continued its support to Israel by sponsoring fund raisers for the Jewish State.
Starbucks is also known for strongly supporting the U.S. President George W. Bush‚s claimed anti-terror campaign, used as a guise for the disdainful acts of the U.S. government aimed at boosting its hegemony worldwide.
The coffee company has donated a store to the U.S. occupying forces in Afghanistan.