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Moby, please don`t play for apartheid - BDS activists respond to Moby`s recent Facebook posting
We just read your message apologizing for `troubling some people` with your
decision to play in Israel (
my-decisions-visit-certain.html). We are indeed troubled. And since you mention
Italy and Berlusconi, we wanted to reply.
We agree with your assertion that visiting Italy, as you will be doing this
weekend, is not akin to supporting Berlusconi. The difference here, and this is
important, is that there is no appeal for a boycott of Italy as a way of
pressuring Berlusconi to change his policies. You can`t say the same in the case
Over 170 organizations from Palestinian civil society, the very people suffering
directly from Israeli policies, have called for a boycott of Israel until it
complies with international law. As we have already explained, the boycott is
supported by international artists, as well as people such as Archbishop Desmond
Tutu and United Nations Special Rapporteur on Palestinian human rights Richard
Your concert in the north of Italy may very well be attended by fans from
Slovenia or Austria. You can`t say the same for your fans in the West Bank or
Gaza wishing to see you perform just a few miles away. They won`t be allowed to
travel to Tel Aviv.
And as unpredictable as Berlusconi may be, you can rest assured that he won`t be
using your concert as a way of legitimizing his policies. You can`t say the same
for the Israeli government. Artists performing in Israel will be used to create
an aura of normalcy for a state that has been carrying out an illegal occupation
and apartheid policies for decades. Just this past June, during a 10-day Israeli
government sponsored kermesse in Milan, the video clips of international stars
performing in Tel Aviv as part of the multimedia installation on the city`s main
square illustrated that there is no separating music and politics where Israel
It`s certainly true, as you say, that virtually all countries have questionable
aspects of their foreign policy, and Italy is no different. However, few have
given rise to an international boycott movement, where state pension funds
divest, superstars cancel concerts, universities sever ties, consumers check the
labels and Nobel prize laureates publicly express their support.
No matter how much you talk about just wanting to `connect with people through
music`, there is no getting around the fact that by performing in Israel, you
will be breaching the boycott, crossing the picket line. There`s no getting
around the fact that you will be entertaining apartheid. There`s no getting
around the fact that your performance will be used to legitimize Israeli
Would you have played in Sun City during the boycotts of apartheid South Africa?
Would you have insisted on simply wanting to connect with the white only
audience through your music?
Make love, fuck war. And don`t play for apartheid.
BDS Italy is a national collective of groups endorsing the Palestinian call for
boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel
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