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Palestinian Boycott Movement Grows: Pop Singer Lorde is Latest Victory with Christmas Eve Announcement

posted on: Dec 27, 2017

Palestinian Boycott Movement Grows: Pop Singer Lorde is Latest Victory with Christmas Eve Announcement

By: J. Michael Springmann/Arab America Contributing Writer

Responding to her fans’ calls for canceling a planned concert in Israel, New Zealand pop singer Lorde bravely announced she had made a bad decision and called off the event.  This brought out the Izzie attack dogs, even though her statement was in keeping with her practice of championing other social issues, in fact, denouncing some of President Donald Trump’s actions.

First, Miri Regev, Israel culture minister, said to the Associated Press “Lorde, I expect you to be a pure heroine, like the title of your first album.” Then Roseanne Barr bared her bias on Twitter:  ” Boycott this bigot.” 

In 2016, the actress also attacked the Clintons as being “anti-Semitic”, saying they would be the death of Israel.   (Barr, a Jew, and apparent Zio-Nazi,  has had problems in the past accepting civil liberties, even decrying portions of the Bill of Rights.)

Two New Zealand activists, Nadia Abu-Shanab, and Justine Sachs wrote an open letter to the singer asking that she cancel her Israel concert. The letter began, “We’re writing to you about your planned performance in Israel. We’re two young women based in Aotearoa, one Jewish, one Palestinian. We feel strongly about this and we’d really appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to hear us out.” they went on to say, “Today, millions of people stand opposed to the Israeli government’s policies of oppression, ethnic cleansing, human rights violations, occupation, and apartheid. As part of this struggle, we believe that an economic, intellectual, and artistic boycott is an effective way of speaking out against these crimes. This worked very effectively against apartheid in South Africa, and we hope it can work again.”

With her bold move, Lorde joined other artists such as Elvis Costello, Lauryn Hill, and Roger Waters in supporting the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement.  However, show promoter Eran Arielli wrote on Facebook  “The truth is that I was naive to think that an artist of her age can withstand the pressure involved in coming to Israel, and I take full responsibility and ask the forgiveness of fans, admirers, and other dreamers…”  (Perhaps  being forced to refund ticket purchases sparked this comment.)

Beginning in 2005, the BDS Movement, modeled on efforts to end South African apartheid, is aimed at isolating Israel, ending its control of Palestinian territory, and forcing it to treat the Palestinian people in accordance with international law.  

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “has made defeating the BDS movement a priority of his administration. In March, the Knesset passed a law barring those who support boycotts against Israel or West Bank settlements from entering the country.”  Critics denounced the law as an attack on free speech.  Logical enough since an Israeli official, Gilad Erdan asserted that the law was “another step in our struggle against those who seek to delegitimize Israel while hiding behind the language of human rights.”

However, Lorde does have backers in her corner.  The “Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), thanked the singer for canceling the tour, ‘and heeding appeals from your fans against Israel’s art-washing of its brutal oppression of Palestinians.’”  

Moreover, “Dayenu: New Zealand Jews against the illegal occupation of Palestinian land and lives, weighed in, thanking Lorde for ‘a holiday miracle.’”  Additionally, Yuval Ben Ami, a Tel Aviv-based fan, musician, and journalist, commented “I am a huge fan of Lorde, but an even bigger fan of equality…So long as people here live without rights, hers is the right choice, and if the BDS movement is emulated in other places where human rights are a concern, that would be commendable.”

Lorde on Saturday Night Live, March 2017
Perhaps in dealing with bigots such as Roseanne Barr and others, the United States ought to follow the example of the Roman Republic, upon which it is modeled.  In the days before Rome degenerated into an empire, enemies of the state were stripped of their citizenship and exiled.  Those were the days when people knew the stories of men who put the good of the Republic above all else.  These were citizens such as Cincinnatus, who resigned his position as Dictator when he was no longer needed, and Horatius, who personally defended the last bridge into Rome against an overwhelming force.


J. Michael Springmann is an attorney, author, and political commentator.  He has written Visas for Al Qaeda: CIA Handouts That Rocked The World and a second book Goodbye, Europe?  Hello, Chaos?  Merkel’s Migrant Bomb.  Both are available on Amazon.  The books’ website is: