Roger Waters calls for UK Pink Floyd cover band to cancel Israel shows
AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia
Roger Waters has struck again -- this time for a cover band of his own songs who were scheduled to play in Israel next month.
Although the UK Pink Floyd Experience performed in Israel back in 2017 without a word from Waters, he unleashed a furious campaign this time around, posting an urgent plea on Facebook containing a picture of the band performing juxtaposed with a graphic picture of a young bloodied boy tugging at a Red Crescent worker attending to him.
The notorious Pink Floyd musician who has been at loggerheads for years with his former bandmate David Gilmour, wrote that it would “be an act of unconscionable malice and disrespect” to perform his songs in Israel and “contribute to the cultural whitewashing of the racist and apartheid government of that country.”
“The people you intend to entertain are executing their neighbor's children, shooting them down in cold blood every day,” continued Waters. “In the name of everything human, PLEASE hear my plea and cancel today.”
On Saturday the band announced on its Facebook page that it was canceling the Israel shows, unleashing an extraordinary response from thousands of Israelis posting on their page.
Waters had tagged the band but it disappeared once it took down its facebook page due to excessive harassment that included posting the phone numbers of band members, who also disconnected their mobile devices.
A note from Roger to UK Pink Floyd Experience @UKPFE :— Roger Waters (@rogerwaters) December 7, 2018
I am aghast to see you have plans to perform in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Be’er Sheba on 4th 5th 6th January. Please don’t do it.
To sing my songs in front of segregated audiences in Israel...
Read more: https://t.co/whLgBnr7YG pic.twitter.com/8SBD6zHH7I
The Egoeast Productions company responsible for arranging the performances in Haifa and Tel Aviv issued a statement that it was still awaiting an official response from the band, which was hoping to find a way to fulfill its contractual obligations to perform.
Waters has become perhaps the greatest champion of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement that advocates isolating the Jewish state over its treatment of Palestinians and is inspired by international advocacy against apartheid-era South Africa.
Intense pressure from the movement’s proponents has led to the cancellation of performances by many high-profile artists.
American pop singer Lana Del Ray canceled her appearance at Israel’s Meteor Festival this summer, while New Zealand pop sensation Lorde canceled her Tel Aviv performance earlier in the summer amid fans’ backlash.
Last week the Student Government Assembly (SGA) at New York University (NYU) voted in favor of a BDS-type resolution for the divestment of companies that do business with the Israeli army.
Israel has tried to counteract the movement by passing last year a law banning the entry of supporters of BDS. But as a result, Netanyahu’s government has received serious criticism for trying to stifle free speech.
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