“Tom Jones, Aerosmith, Rod Stewart, the Pet Shop Boys – and that’s just through June. When the heck are we going to conduct the business of this party – and of this country?”
Tel Aviv, April 6 – Leadership of the Israeli Labor Party is now considering joining the Boycott, Divest, Sanctions movement in the latter’s targeting of entertainers not to perform in Israel, after an upcoming concert by Britney Spears this summer forced the party to change the date of its scheduled internal election.
Prominent Labor officials voiced sympathy for the first time with BDS after the postponement announcement yesterday, and in anticipation of a veritable flood of famous musicians scheduled to perform in Israel over the next several months. They argued that with all the concerts taking place starting this May, there will be no time to conduct a proper primary campaign.
“It’s not just Britney Spears,” explained MK Nachman Shai, a new proponent of BDS. “Tom Jones, Aerosmith, Rod Stewart, the Pet Shop Boys – and that’s just through June. When the heck are we going to conduct the business of this party – and of this country? It has to stop. I hate the idea of an international embargo by musicians against Israel, but if that’s what it takes to get something done around here, so be it.”
Analysts observed that the developing phenomenon supports an argument by BDS advocates who claim that isolating Israel diplomatically, politically, economically, culturally, and academically is in Israel’s interests. “It’s not exactly the same logic, but it’s parallel,” noted Peter Beinart, who contributes to Haaretz. “Many Jews who welcome BDS believe we’re saving Israel from itself by promoting such punitive actions. It turns out that BDS tactics do resonate with some Israeli politicians as good for the society, just not the way the activists intended. We’ll take it, though. I mean, there haven’t been many BDS successes, so we have to take what we can and spin it as a victory.”
Unfortunately for Shai and other Labor stalwarts who now favor BDS, the very events they lament also prevent an adoption by Labor of a BDS platform in advance of its primaries. “With all these performances going on there’s just no time to reset the agenda,” complained Erel Margalit, who seeks to challenge Isaac Herzog as party chairman. “We may not have a choice but to wait until there are parliamentary elections sometime over the next two years, and then take our idea to the electorate at large. The public will certainly support this policy – how can they be getting anything done with the constant stream of artists performing here? Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go score some free tickets from a lobbyist to those Guns N Roses, Radiohead, and Robbie Williams concerts coming up.”
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