Tuesday, November 24, 2020

  • Tuesday, November 24, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

The Arab world has been in an uproar over a photo of Egyptian singer Mohamed Ramadan, who was photographed in Dubai embracing Israeli singer Omar Adam.

As usual when these things happen, the underlying antisemitism in much of the Arab world is on full display. Ramadan is being summoned for an investigation in Egypt by the Egyptian Theatrical Professions Syndicate. Ramadan himself has claimed that he had no idea who Adam was when he posed for the photo.

Egyptian Streets has an op-ed by Mirna Abdulaal justifying the anger by saying that everyone should follow the dictates of the BDS movement:

Art-washing, according to the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, is the “use of culture to whitewash the occupation.” In other words, artists can be used to hide the crimes of the oppressor and justify the ongoing dispossession of Palestinians.

To put it simply, BDS argues that Israel can use culture as a form of ‘propaganda’ to ‘art-wash’ the crimes and oppression of the state.

“The cultural boycott of Israel is inspired by the South African anti-apartheid struggle,” says PACBI’s (the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel) Stephanie Adam.

Art-washing essentially gives a false image of ‘normalcy’ against grave and heinous acts of repression.
But then, Abdulaal - who is Egyptian - strays from the BDS playbook:
First, we need to distinguish between social and cultural normalization as opposed to economic or political normalization. Political peace deals should not necessarily influence social and cultural issues, as this would undermine the conditions that the peace agreements rest upon – which is to end the occupation of Palestinian territories and violation of Palestinian’s rights.
BDS doesn't make any such distinction - it is against any interaction with Israel, both political and cultural (and especially economic, which is BDS' main point!) 

Abdulaal, as a loyal Egyptian subject, cannot say she is against the Egyptian peace treaty with Israel, perhaps out of patriotism and perhaps out of fear. So she has to change BDS' rules to allow economic and political ties with Israel, but to discourage any cultural and social ties, which is pretty much what Egypt has been doing

She also encourages readers to visit the BDS site to see what local BDS groups there are in your country. 

If you choose Egypt, it points to the BDSEgypt.com site - which is dead.

If you choose Jordan, you are directed to a site that hasn't been updated in three years.

Morocco's BDS site is likewise two years without an update.

It is harder to be a BDSer in most Arab countries than it is in Europe.

(h/t Mitchell B)

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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