I have to admit I was shocked when I first saw that Pete Seeger was lined up to play a gig for one of the organisations most responsible for the instigation and covering up of zionist ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population of Palestine. Even those artists who play gigs in Israel can usually come up with some mealy mouthed justification for their actions or they donate proceeds to some charity or other whilst appeasing the lobby. But what possible excuse can there be for raising funds for ethnic cleansing or for planting forest over the sites where ethnic cleansing has taken place?
News of Pete Seeger’s betrayal was greeted at first with a stunned silence from activists though I gather some did write to him privately and, since he doesn’t use email, in hard copy.
Folk music legend Pete Seeger has been asked to abandon an upcoming concert in Israel and show his support for a Palestinian-led cultural boycott of the nation.
The singer/songwriter is billed to perform at the With Earth and Each Other: A Virtual Rally for a Better Middle East – an event organised by the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies and the Jewish National Fund in November and his involvement has upset activists calling on all musicians to scrap Israeli shows.
Officials at steering human rights group Adalah New York insist they are among 40 organisations urging Seeger to change his mind about the show, and join the likes of the Pixies, Elvis Costello and Carlos Santana in boycotting concerts in Israel.
A spokesman says, “The organisations have called on Seeger to support the Palestinian-led movement for a cultural boycott of Israel, modelled on the artists’ boycott that helped end Apartheid in South Africa.
“Insist”? What’s all that about?