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Saturday, February 26, 2011

Faithless: Another hypocritical band boycotting Israel

From Mail and Guardian Online:

In December 2010 British electronic group Faithless’s lead singer Maxi Jazz wrote a note on his website to “family and friends of the band in Israel”.

He said: “We’ve been asked to do some shows this summer in your country and, with the heaviest of hearts, I have regretfully declined the invitation. While human beings are being willfully denied not just their rights but their needs for their children and grandparents and themselves, I feel deeply that I should not be sending even tacit signals that this is either ‘normal’ or ‘ok’.”

This adds Faithless to a lengthening list of artists, including Elvis Costello, the Pixies and the Gorillaz, who have refused to perform in Israel while it occupies parts of the Palestinian territories.
Faithless had played in Israel in the past.

Check out the justification their lead guitarist gives for choosing only to boycott Israel:
“A question that usually arises is why we aren’t boycotting the US or Britain because of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said. “We can’t boycott Britain -- we live here -- and in the US the music market is so big that it would go unnoticed. If you’re serious about trying to make the world a better place, you have to be strategic.”
So, according to these brilliant rock stars, it is just as problematic to play in the UK and US as it is in Israel, but since it is not practical - they won't bother. Not to mention how their entire incomes would go down to zero.

Isn't it great to see how dedicated these jokers are to morality?

But it gets even better. Faithless has no problem playing in the UAE, for example, where there are massive human rights violations against its majority migrant population.

Even better, but Faithless has performed in Beirut - in a counry that has literal laws on the books that discriminate against Palestinian Arabs, severely restricting their ability to get jobs, to own land, and forbidding their becoming citizens.

Would this enlightened band consider boycotting these two relatively small countries where their political statement would be noticed by many people? Yeah, right.

Faithless pretends they are somehow making a moral statement by shunning Israel when in fact they are simply blindly following the crowd without knowing the first thing about the topic they are pretending to be so worked up about.