Sunday, March 12, 2006

Kudos to Roger Waters

Roger Waters, former bassist for Pink Floyd, has resisted calls for him to boycott playing in Israel. Waters who expressed his intent to play a few gigs in Israel was lambasted by pro-Palestinian groups for playing in Israel. Many used the irony that he was a part of a group whose most famous song was about a wall, coming to a country who have built their own 'apartheid wall'.
However, Waters has refused to cancel plans to play in Israel. In reaction to the protest, Waters told the Guardian newspaper, "I have many fans in Israel, many of whom refuse to serve in the military. I won't cancel my trip to Israel because I don't agree with the government's policies, just as I won't stop performing in Britain simply because I disagree with the policies of Tony Blair.
"People who live in Israel are human beings, just like everyone."
This shouldn't be a remarkable statement, but it is. I have no problem with someone being against Israel's policies, that is freedom of speech. But when someone disagrees with Israel's existence or holds Israel to a higher standard than any other country, that is problematic.
Waters clearly does not do this, so I applaud Waters for his stance and say welcome. The former Pink Floyd star's stance should be a model for all would-be Israel boycotts.

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