From Israeli Citizens to Peter Murphy - The answer is clear, boycott apartheid Israel!

October 2016

From Israeli Citizens to Peter Murphy - The answer is clear, boycott apartheid Israel! 


We are Israeli citizens, opposed to the Israeli government’s policies of oppression, occupation, apartheid and ethnic cleansing against the indigenous Palestinian people [1]. Many of us are veteran human rights activists who have long worked against these policies. It's our long years of anti-racism advocacy that brought us to the understanding that the most effective way to stop the apartheid system is to deny its economic fuel and political legitimacy. Therefore, we strongly support the Palestinian call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), aimed at ending these actions [2]. We write to you to ask you to heed the Palestinian call for justice, and cancel your concert in Israel.


We are well aware that this is not your first concert in Israel, but we would like to inform you of some of the things which international artists might not be aware of. First, Tel Aviv, in which you are about to perform, sits atop the Palestinian village of Al Mas’udyia, from which the indigenous Palestinians were killed or expelled during the  Nakba - the ethnic cleansing committed by Zionist militias in 1948 [3]. Several other Palestinian villages also stood within the current municipal area of Tel Aviv, and were ethnically cleansed and demolished in 1948.


Despite all this, Tel Aviv is still being used as a tool for marketing Israel as a culturally contemporary democracy [4],  while hiding a history of ethnic cleansing and a present of a military regime and apartheid policies against the surviving indigenous people.


Performing in Tel Aviv today is very similar to performing in South Africa’s Sun City during the reign of the apartheid Regime. Also, the Israeli army’s military control center, as well as the Ministry of Defense, are located in the heart of Tel Aviv, and have serve as the headquarters for the oppressive population control in the West Bank, and the massacres and siege operations committed by Israel in Gaza.


Israel holds the Gaza Strip under hermetic siege, in which Israel conducts vicious major bombing campaigns on a regular basis. The latest one, in 2014, resulted in over 2000 innocent Palestinians massacred, 500 of whom were children [5]. The Palestinians in Gaza live in constant anxiety, knowing that the next massacre is just around the corner.


In the West Bank, Israel has massively escalated its home-demolition policies against Palestinians, while it continues to construct Jewish-only colonies on stolen Palestinian land. 2016 has seen a massive escalation in policy of extrajudicial executions [6], with an execution taking place almost every day, including women and children. Another oppressive policy seeing escalation is that of mass, arbitrary arrests, with currently 7000 Palestinians in Israel’s prisons. Over 10% of total prisoners are held without charge, trial, or release date [7]. All prisoners are subject to systematic ill-treatment, medical neglect, beatings, and torture [8]. Most disturbing is the fact that children aren’t protected, and in fact, Israel’s arrest of children has escalated in the past two years, despite United Nations pressure to end all forms of state child abuse [9].  


Within Israel itself there are no less than 50 laws discriminating against the Palestinian citizens of the State [10], while Israeli parliament members compete for votes, by exhibiting who can make the most genocidal statement [11].


We know that on your official website you wrote that you would like to play for all denominations of faith, and in Palestinian territories. This kind of action is best addressed by The Palestinian Campaign for Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) [12]:


International cultural workers who fail to heed the call for boycott, crossing the BDS “picket line,” and then attempting to visit Palestinian institutions or groups in a “balancing” gesture, contribute to the false perception of symmetry between the colonial oppressor and the colonized.  Although visits to the occupied Palestinian territory by international supporters and advocates of Palestinian rights have always been welcomed as a source of encouragement and support, Palestinians believe that solidarity entails respecting the boycott call, which is an authoritative call of the oppressed, and not combining a visit to Palestinian institutions or groups with activities with boycottable Israeli institutions.  International visitors who insist on including Israeli cultural institutions in their itinerary, as a form of “fig-leafing”, should not expect to be welcomed by Palestinian cultural institutions.


It is for all this that we ask you to stand in solidarity with the indigenous Palestinian people, and say ‘no’ to the whitewashing of apartheid through music. Please cancel your concert in apartheid Israel.


We will gladly address any questions or comments you may have.



Boycott! Supporting the Palestinian BDS Call from Within












[11] * *