Boycott news: Norway and Spain top the idiot charts

Boycott news: Norway and Spain top the idiot charts


norman lebrecht

August 17, 2015

A Norwegian film festival has refused entry to a film about disabled children because it is Israeli, not Palestinian.

A Spanish music festival has cancelled the American rapper Matisyahu because he refused to sign a Palestine solidarity statement.

Orwell was right. The world can only conceive of politics in binary simplicities. Palestine good, Israel bad.



  • T. Manor says:

    Uh boy…here comes another Zionist paranoia. Heaven forbid anyone has a view that’s not in line with the Israeli flavor of the month.

    You really don’t get freedom, do you Mr. Lebrecht?

    • Dave T says:

      “You really don’t get freedom, do you Mr. Lebrecht?”

      Apparently neither do these Norwegians and Spaniards.

    • Glenn Hardy says:

      What’s this “has a view” nonsense? A festival boycotts a country, and it “has a view?” Though I have not verified this, I’d bet they are not “having a view” towards Saudi Arabia; or Syria; or China; or Russia; or the United States, all of whom are currently sponsoring some pretty horrendous stuff. Ah, but that doesn’t fit in so well with the “uh boy” groaning about “Zionism.” I get it. Next up: The Rothschilds. Break out the tinfoil hats.

      We know that Israel has a disgraceful record on human rights, like so many of their neighbors. Among other things, bulldozing people’s homes is an atrocity. But you might be a little paranoid too if your country had been almost continuously bombed and attacked from day one of its existence. Of course, we can’t speak of that under the current rules of political correctness.

      And your question is simply inane.

    • Simon S. says:

      I’ve just checked the facts on the Spanish case:

      An artist was forced to pronounce himself on a political question for the mere fact that he is Jewish (he is no citizen of Israel and does not live there). As he refused to do so, his show was cancelled. How would you call this, if not Antisemitism?

      What would the people who applaud this say if every muslim artist was forced to pronounce themselves on, say, human rights in Saudi Arabia, the crimes of IS or global islamic terrorism – just because they’re muslims?

      • Simon S. says:

        And, by the way, of course they are free to cancel his show because he’s Jewish. And we are all free to call them Antisemites for this.

      • Janis says:

        Agreed. There’s lots of things that lots of countries do that are bad enough to complain about them. And yet the only country that people are expected to publicly state that they dislike is the one that … oh, just happens to be brimming with Jews?

        I disagree with some things that Israel has done. I disagree with some things that every country has done, including my own. But there is no way you can hide what these boycotts are: just a novel way to rebrand the same old Jew-hatred that’s infected Europe for a thousand years in a new organic-hipster-eco-friendly package. These people don’t give a half-damn about the Palestinians or any other dispossessed people — they just hate Jews, and they are over the Moon about having found what appears to be an intellectually and morally water-tight excuse for it.

        Look up how Norway treated its lebensborn children and tell me they have any room to talk. Maybe we should boycott them. Let’s boycott the United States for Guantanamo Bay. Let’s boycott the UK over Northern Ireland. Hey I have an idea, let’s boycott everybody!

        No. That would be crazy. How about we just boycott the Jews and be done with it?

      • PDQ.BACH says:

        Perfectly said, Simon. You couldn’t expose their callous hypocrisy in fewer words.

        Which reminds me of a Soviet joke.
        On a public panel, an American and a Russian journalist are jousting.
        The American says: “I’m free to call my President an idiot and a criminal. You don’t have that freedom.”
        The Russian retorts: “Of course I’m free to call your President an idiot and a criminal!”

        The Soviet Union may have disappeared; but Soviet-style doublethink has thoroughly pervaded the public discourse, under the mantle of Political Correctness.

  • El Grillo says:

    I actually don’t support boycotts, and a look at history shows they don’t work. South Africa is then a supposed example that they worked. However what happened is that as soon as blacks got the vote, because this meant a whole reworking of the economic system, the banks stepped in, got a few measures past, and because of economic problems they caused (and again gaining profits for a few rich people) life expectancy for black people plummeted 13 years.
    However I do agree that Israel government is not behaving in a manner that helps their nation or the Palestinians, either. What they are doing also is promoting a destabilization in the whole area, that then quite a few factions are profiting from. Certainly they aren’t the only country in that area doing this, along with various other factions that do not live in the area.
    To characterize a whole nation (once again, as if it hasn’t been enough) or rather two nations as leading “the idiot charts,” in an attempt to get anyone to chose sides, and condone such name calling, is not helping any side of this already highly volatile situation.
    And in all of those nations there are people not promoting such stereotyping, insulting and coercion, people that actually want peace. Simply that. The same, when Palestinian and Israel Women get together and have a march protesting war (together) this doesn’t make it to corporate media. That’s just relegated to those crazy people that think that war or coercion doesn’t work. And in contrast it’s supposed to be sane to have enough nuclear weapons go destroy all human life on the planet twenty times, to make sure the enemy is dead (this is called necessary over kill). What if, instead of promoting the ability to kill as some kind of magic it never has shown to add up to, some of that money (those trillions) went to peace keeping efforts, to understand a culture and a history and trauma on all sides? What if instead of other forms of coercion (boycotts etc.) art was promoted, which has always (if it’s truly art) brought the mind to a place that brings out the humanity in everyone, rather than choosing sides?

    And the saddest thing is that when there’s this kind of duality going on, there are those that come in and take advantage of it to exploit a destabilized situation. You maintain a society that uses coercion and trauma as a means to control a populace and you get a hoard of sociopaths mesmerized with the same, and using it for their own personal gain, not having any ability to care what this does to others or see that this isn’t promoting happiness for them either.

  • Eric Koenig says:

    Boycotts can work if they are well organized. These were not. That, and not whether they favored Israel, the Palestinians or the Tooth Fairy, is why they are idiotic.

  • Jon says:

    For those that can read Spanish, a thorough analysis of the Matisyahu case:

    Summary: the music festival in Spain is meant to be a celebration of peace and harmony among people and countries, Matisyahu has expressed his opinion about the conflict between Israel and Palestine many times and he is far from advocating peace and harmony between both parts. Therefore he wasn’t suitable for the festival in Spain.

    The festival in Spain made a mistake by hiring him on the first time and then inviting him again when all the establishment (pro-Israeli) press in Spain created the scandal.