Despite it’s humble dimensions, Israel is both a major consumer and a significant exporter of culture.
Only in these last few months Tel Aviv was honored by great visitors such as Madonna, Guns N Roses, Chris Cornell and Morrissey who rocked the stages; RHCP and the Prodigy are yet to come later this summer.
Alongside the “big names”, international indie artists perform in Israel every month, one of which is the Brian Jonestown Massacre band who played in Tel Aviv last week. In an interview given before the show, singer Anton Newcombe explained that he was adressed by BDS activists who urged him to cancel the gig and boycott Israel, a request he briefly reffered to as “bullshit”.
The concert was covered positively by fans and critiques, a fact with which the BDS crowd just can’t accept.
The one and only infamous Tali Shapiro applied her usual methods of lies and harassment of which I’ve written in the past.
Frustrated with Newcomb’s attitude and refusal to give in, Shapiro posted on her blog on July 19th, a post in which she once again personally harassing Anton and DEMANDS that he reads her materials, change his mind and express regret and understanding that performing in Israel is in fact an “apartheid supporting” deed. On this I shall use Anton’s own words- Bullshit.
The following Saturday, a person claiming to be a Joneston Massacre fan contacted The band’s leader on Twitter and linked to Shapiro’s post. This started a chain reaction of public harassment, which you can read over at Shapiro’s Twitter Account, and lasted for three days and countless tweets.
The fact that Anton ignored the ever repeating requests to boycott Israel, ignored her repeating tweets to him on the subject, ignored her Facebook mentions and blog post all didn’t matter to Shapiro. It didn’t stop her from using her regular method of addressing an artist as a “politically aware fan”, and then call all of her web-bully friends to flood his twitter feed again and again and again.
This discussion was doomed to escalate. Anton wrote repeatedly that he is being harassed by Shapiro and the others, asked them to stop mentioning him and eventually blocked her account – And still, the BDS crowd just wouldn’t let go.
Anton Newcomb is not the only artist who’s being spammed and bugged by the BDS network of activists. They are targeting musicians and performers in general, they systematically follow upcoming concerts in Israel, and then nag them before (and AFTER…) with Facebook pages, online petitions and twitter accounts calling them to cancel their gigs- through harassing, obsessive Spam campaigns.
Check out their Facebook page “TAG an artist Against Apartheid”‘ which I think should have been called: “Tag an artists and mention and message and spam him till he wants to shoot himself”.
I want to dedicate this post to brave and patient Mr. Newcombe. I don’t know him personally but I do know that if it was me being harassed like that (AFTER the goddamn show!), I’d go for massive user reports…