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The shame in Spain
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The shame in Spain

The moral bankruptcy of the anti-Israel BDS movement was on display after boycott activists convinced music festival promoters in Spain to cancel an appearance by American-Jewish singer Matisyahu unless he issued a statement declaring his support for Palestinian statehood. 

We can’t imagine any other circumstances or venue in which a singer of any nationality or religious background would be asked to sign onto a specific political platform before being allowed to perform. But when it comes to Israel and its enemies, apparently the entire notion of “double standard” no longer has meaning.

Never mind that the BDS movement itself cannot seem to acknowledge the possibility of a two-state solution. And hold your nose while we remember that Matisyahu isn’t Israeli and seems to have been singled out under the assumption that any Jew anywhere must be held accountable for what one group deems Israel’s policy misdeeds. As Matisyahu tweeted, “Honestly it was appalling and offensive, that as the one publicly Jewish-American artist scheduled for the festival they were trying to coerce me into political statements.”

The good news is that the festival yielded to a global backlash, allowing the former hasid to take the stage and sing, among others, his song “Jerusalem” — as protesters waved Palestinian flags, and fans expressed their pleasure in his music. 

Matisyahu had the final word. “Whoever you are and wherever you come from raise a flag and wave it in the air,” he said before his closing song. “Let music be your flag.”

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