Recently, officials in the fascistic, openly Jewish supremacist, Israeli government attacked famed rockstar Roger Waters’ performance in Berlin. Israel’s anti-Palestinian agents in many countries amplified the embarrassing frenzy, which claimed Waters was anti-Jewish for posting Anne Frank’s name on a big screen alongside murdered Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh. Even if Waters’ show had simply contrasted the two names it wouldn’t have been untoward but in fact the names of about a dozen individuals killed by security forces, such as George Floyd in the US, flashed on the screen during the performance.
The second element in their cynical frenzy was complaining that Waters dressed in fascist, SS-like, attire. But Waters has been doing variations of this anti-fascist, anti-Nazi, skit for four decades, as the photo above demonstrates.
Finally, some claimed the performance included a pig with a Star of David at the show, which was an outright fabrication. In a statement Waters responded:
“My recent performance in Berlin has attracted bad faith attacks from those who want to smear and silence me because they disagree with my political views and moral principles. The elements of my performance that have been questioned are quite clearly a statement in opposition to fascism, injustice, and bigotry in all its forms. Attempts to portray those elements as something else are disingenuous and politically motivated. The depiction of an unhinged fascist demagogue has been a feature of my shows since Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall’ in 1980.
“I have spent my entire life speaking out against authoritarianism and oppression wherever I see it. When I was a child after the war, the name of Anne Frank was often spoken in our house, she became a permanent reminder of what happens when fascism is left unchecked. My parents fought the Nazis in World War II, with my father paying the ultimate price. Regardless of the consequences of the attacks against me, I will continue to condemn injustice and all those who perpetrate it.”
Following Israeli officials, Canada’s apartheid lobbyists amplified the antisemitism panic. On Twitter Justin Trudeau’s special envoy on combating antisemitism Irwin Cotler, Liberal MP Ya’ara Saks, former Canadian Jewish Congress head Bernie Farber and former MP Michael Leavitt all cried antisemitism. So did Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre, Honest Reporting Canada and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, which tweeted: “We are disgusted by Roger Waters’ actions at a Berlin concert yesterday. It’s bad enough to draw inaccurate parallels with Anne Frank (especially in Berlin), but to also appear on stage dressed as an SS Nazi soldier? This is blatant antisemitism.”
The faux outrage is little more than a cynical smear against a prominent individual who refuses to back down in supporting Palestinians. They failed to shutdown Waters’ recent concert in Frankfurt and despite endless attacks he continues to put on highly political concerts in large venues around the world. Now there is an effort to cancel his upcoming concerts and the German police launched a criminal investigation into Waters over the Nazi-style uniform he wore at the concert in Berlin.
The attacks against Waters are the latest example of the endless weaponization of antisemitism by Israeli nationalists. In the most damaging case, leftist British Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn was destabilized, as Asa Winstanley details in his recent book Weaponising Anti-Semitism: How the Israel Lobby Brought Down Jeremy Corbyn. Israeli nationalists have so misused the word in their defense of apartheid and violations of international law that all charges of antisemitism have become suspect, even when they may be deserved.
Before these incidents, in 2016, I wrote“‘Antisemitism’ may be the most abused term in Canada today. Almost entirely divorced from its dictionary definition — ‘discrimination against or prejudice or hostility toward Jews’ — it is now primarily invoked to uphold Jewish and white privilege.” I added that if there wasn’t an intervention of some sort, future dictionaries may define “antisemitism” as “a movement for justice and equality.”
I was viciously attacked when I wrote that seven years ago, but the recent manufactured outrage over Roger Waters suggests the statement is even more true today.
Shame on the anti-Palestinian lobby for this state of affairs.