New Zealand pop star pulls plug on Israel gig amid BDS pressure

New Zealand singer and songwriter Lorde cancels gig in Israel, thanks BDS activists for ‘educating’ her.

By: Jack Ben-David, World Israel News

New Zealand singer and songwriter Lorde announced Sunday that she will be canceling her performance in Israel after pressure was exerted on her by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, according to the show’s organizers.

Lorde, whose real name is Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor, indicated last week that she was considering pulling out of the gig, scheduled for June, after an open letter was sent to her penned by two women, also from new Zealand––an Arab named Nadia Abu-Shanab and a Jew named Justine Sachs––urging her to cancel the show.

After posting on her Twitter account that she was “considering all options,” the 21-year-old Lorde responded: “Noted! Been speaking w many people about this and considering all options. Thank u for educating me i am learning all the time too.”

Sachs and Abu-Shanab presented a united Jewish and Palestinian front as they implored Lorde to pull the plug on Israel.

“Dear Lorde, we’re two young women—one Jewish, one Palestinian,” they began, before listing a litany of alleged offenses perpetrated by Israel.

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“Today, millions of people stand opposed to the Israeli government’s policies of oppression, ethnic cleansing, human rights violations, occupation and apartheid. As part of this struggle, we believe that an economic, intellectual and artistic boycott is an effective way of speaking out against these crimes,” the duo continued, then evoking a comparison between Israel and South African apartheid.

“This worked very effectively against apartheid in South Africa, and we hope it can work again,” they claimed.

“We can play an important role in challenging injustice today,” they continued. “We urge you to act in the spirit of progressive New Zealanders who came before you and continue their legacy.”

While Lorde eventually collapsed under the weight of the pressure, other music artists have proven more resilient, notably the British rock band Radiohead, which insisted on blasting out their music at Tel Aviv’s Yarkon Park last July despite aggressive pressure from BDS activist Roger Waters and others. Some 47,000 Israeli fans embraced the group.