The Israeli historian Ilan Pappe has issued the following statement regarding Radiohead’s decision to appear on stage in Israel tomorrow, disregarding appeals from Palestinians and their supporters around the world.
Via Artists for Palestine UK, London, July 18th
‘The oppression of the Palestinians in the occupied territories has not ceased for one day in the last 50 years. This oppression includes daily violations of Palestinian human and civil rights and does not spare children, pregnant mothers, old people, disabled persons and ordinary men and women. The so called peace process has failed to end this oppression and each failure of its various stages has produced more oppression and despair for the millions of Palestinians living in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
Artists for Palestine UK statement
London, July 17
Film writer and director Mike Leigh has criticised Thom Yorke and Radiohead for ignoring Palestinian suffering, two days ahead of their controversial Israel gig.
Last week Radiohead front-man Yorke defended the band’s decision to play in Israel and ignore the Palestinian picket-line, arguing that music was about ‘crossing borders’ and ‘shared humanity’.
Today, Oscar nominated Leigh, who is in production for his forthcoming feature film ‘Peterloo’, issued the following statement via Artists for Palestine UK – Continue reading
London, April 24th 2017
Dear Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, Colin Greenwood, Ed O’Brien and Philip Selway,
You’re listed to play Tel Aviv in July this year.
We’d like to ask you to think again – because by playing in Israel you’ll be playing in a state where, UN rapporteurs say, ‘a system of apartheid has been imposed on the Palestinian people’.
We understand you’ve been approached already by Palestinian campaigners. They’ve asked you to respect their call for a cultural boycott of Israel, and you’ve turned them down. Since Radiohead campaigns for freedom for the Tibetans, we’re wondering why you’d turn down a request to stand up for another people under foreign occupation. And since Radiohead fronted a gig for the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we’re wondering why you’d ignore a call to stand against the denial of those rights when it comes to the Palestinians.
MEDIA: Eddie Izzard Misses Palestinian Marathon Following Backlash Over Tel Aviv Gig, Hollywood Reporter 31/3/2017
RELATED: ‘Israel bans Gaza runners from Palestine Marathon in Bethlehem’ Middle East Monitor March 30, 2017
Palestinians run for right to free movement in Bethlehem marathon 31.03.2017
‘In a development saturated with political and emotional charge, South African runner Mervin Steenkamp came in first, for the second year in a row. Second-placed Thaer Shanaah is from Gaza, the densely populated coastal strip under blockade by Israel’.
UPDATE 09.03.2017 From Israeli Citizens: Radiohead, Please Don’t Play Tel-Aviv
Open letter from Israeli citizens to Radiohead : “We urge you to cancel your performances in Israel and not grant your seal of approval to Israel’s ongoing crimes and human rights violations.” 09.03.2017
London, 7 March 2017
Calls mount for Radiohead to cancel Israel gig
- Artists for Palestine UK joins growing appeal to Radiohead to cancel Israel gig
- Palestinian artists say, ‘Stand with the oppressed, as Brian Eno, Alice Walker and Roger Waters do’
- Jewish Voice for Peace in South Florida, USA, says, ‘We urge you to cancel, as an inspiration to young people everywhere’
Artists for Palestine UK (APUK), whose Artists’ Pledge for Palestine has over 1200 signatories, called today for UK band Radiohead to cancel their concert in Tel Aviv, scheduled for July 19.
On Monday The Guardian put out a press association report on high-profile sculptor Anish Kapoor’s acceptance of Israel’s $1 million Genesis prize. The prize is awarded by the Genesis Prize Foundation, the office of the Israeli prime minister and the Jewish Agency for Israel and “recognises individuals who have attained excellence and international renown in their fields and whose actions and achievements express a commitment to Jewish values, the Jewish community and the State of Israel”.
Artists have written to DJ Fatboy Slim asking him to cancel his forthcoming show in Tel Aviv. Norman Cook, AKA Fatboy Slim, said recently in an interview that his criteria for accepting a gig means it has to ‘fulfil the 5 f’s’ – a first, a favour for a friend, fun, finance, food. Playing the settler-colonial state may be ‘a first’ for Fatboy, but it’s only going to be ‘fun’ if he ignores the experience of Palestinians including those within Israel’s borders. We hope he thinks again.
- Haaretz: ‘Former Pink Floyd bassist signs an open letter telling the electronic duo to not be fooled by Tel Aviv’s cool vibe while a different petition accuses artists who perform in Israel of whitewashing apartheid.’ (November 5, 2016)
Report in the Guardian: ‘Former Pink Floyd man joins campaign alongside Caryl Churchill and Maxine Peake seeking a cultural boycott to promote better treatment of Palestinians’ (November 2, 2016)
- Report in Pitchfork: ‘Roger Waters, Thousands More Petition the Chemical Brothers to Cancel Tel Aviv Show’; and here in NME magazine and MixMag (November 1, 2016)
- In an interview with Israeli media Chemical Brothers deny they are asked to boycott Israel despite over 7,000 people asking them to do just that. They are quoted as saying ‘pressure was not applied to us. We will go to any place where young people want to see us playing. We are not really involved in all the rest’. Needless to say, if the controversial concert goes ahead, fans in the occupied Palestinian territories will not be able to reach it due to ‘all the rest’. (October 29, 2016).
- More than 7,000 people sign a petition asking Chemical Brothers Ed and Tom not to play Tel Aviv! (October 28, 2016)
Senegalese singer Baaba Maal, due to perform in the Israeli-occupied Old City of Jerusalem on Tuesday 20 September, is a Global Ambassador for Oxfam.
Artists for Palestine UK has engaged in discussion with Oxfam in the hope the organisation would dissuade him from going ahead with the performance.
We have argued that an NGO which recruits artists to promote its values needs to make sure the artists’ actions are consistent with those values. Baaba Maal appearing in occupied East Jerusalem is not, we’ve argued, consistent with Oxfam’s stated opposition to Israeli colonisation policy.
We are making public an edited version of our most recent letter to our Oxfam interlocutors.
In its determination to assist Israel in silencing criticism, the British government betrays the values of freedom and tolerance that it claims to see as fundamental. This article, written by a member of the Artists for Palestine UK collective, charts the resulting pattern of attacks on the rights of Israel’s critics in Britain, from local councils to academics and arts organisations.
2016 began with ringing declarations about British liberty. David Cameron’s New Year message to the nation contrasted the freedom and tolerance of ‘our way of life’ with the ‘poisonous narrative of grievance and resentment’ laid out by ‘murderous extremists’, seething with hatred for the west.
These are claims that have come to sound more hollow with every month that passes. Domestically, the Prevent strategy operationalises the defence of ‘freedom’ with an apparatus of reporting and repression which extends across schools, universities and the NHS – some NHS trusts have made it mandatory for staff to attend Prevent workshops. In its foreign policy, Cameron’s government holds firmly to alliances with states which are deeply committed to the oppression of the populations they rule over: Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Israel, to name only the most prominent. Turkey, a NATO member, uses airstrikes against its Kurdish population without reaction from the defenders of freedom. Saudi Arabia kills its opponents, and is met only with an expression of ‘disappointment’ from a British junior minister.
Every document of civilisation, wrote Walter Benjamin, is also a document of barbarism. He could have had the corporate-sponsored London art scene in mind – and in particular the Zabludowicz Collection, now a strong presence in London, as it is in New York and Helsinki. With the growing influence of Zabludowicz, art and the occupation of Palestine are becoming more closely linked – a linkage which artists are now challenging.