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[Boycott - Cultural]

150 Irish artists pledge to boycott Israel


Conor Sullivan, The Irish Times
13 August 2010

In response to the call from Palestinian civil society for a cultural boycott of Israel, we pledge not to avail of any invitation to perform or exhibit in Israel, nor to accept any funding from any institution linked to the government of Israel, until such time as Israel complies with international law and universal principles of human rights.

The Pledge


A cultural boycott of Israel was launched yesterday, with more than 150 Irish artists announcing that they intend not to perform or exhibit in Israel, or to accept any funding from institutions linked to the Israeli government.

The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) said it was in protest at Israel’s “treatment of the Palestinian people”.

Raymond Deane of the IPSC cited a statement from the Israeli Foreign Ministry in 2005 saying they considered culture a propaganda tool.

He said: “Artists who perform there are backing it [the Israeli government] whether they like it or not.”

The pledge signed by the artists states the boycott would continue, “until such time as Israel complies with international law and universal principles of human rights”. Mr Deane said: “You can’t really pin this down”, but it means, “at least an end of the occupation of Palestine; dismantling or at least stopping the settlements; and Israel negotiating in good faith with the Palestinians”.



Damien Dempsey, Dublin singer-songwriter,
signs the Irish pledge from artists and
musicians to boycott Israel

An Israeli embassy spokesman said the boycott “was regrettable and ill-advised” and that “vilifying and ostracising Israel and promoting a lose-lose programme of boycotts is not the way to secure legitimate Palestinian rights”.

Singer and songwriter Damien Dempsey hoped the boycott would encourage young people in Israel who disagreed with the government to “speak out”.

He said that the military were running the show in Israel and that they needed the world to stand up against them.

Musician Donal Lunny said he was taking part to “express solidarity with the Palestinian people”.

When asked about the boycott’s chances for success, Eoin Dillon, a performer with Irish and world music band Kila, said: “It worked in South Africa.”


Source: http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2010/0813/1224276715164.html


Dublin concert sees launch of ‘Irish Cultural Boycott of Israel’ pledge
Over 150 creative and performing artists sign up to Boycott Israel


Press Release, Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign
13 August 2010

On the afternoon of Thursday 12th August 2010, the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) officially launched the historic “Irish artists’ pledge to boycott Israel” at a lunchtime concert in Meeting House Square in Dublin. Present at the launch were 20 of the pledge’s current 150 signatories, including musicians Damien Dempsey, Donal Lunny and Eoin Dillon (Kíla), artists Robert Ballagh and Felim Egan, playwright Jimmy Murphy and actress Neilí Conroy as well as a crowd of supporters.



Pledge Signatories (L-R): Hassan Ould Moctar (musician), Philip Donnery (musician), Jimmy Murphy (playwright), Felim Egan (painter), Renate Debrun (artist), Sami Moukkadem (musician, writer), Rhona Clarke (composer), Dave Lordan (poet), Raymond Deane (composer), Stephen Rothschild (artist), Steve Woods (film-maker), Bobby Ballagh (artist), Deirdre Murphy (dancer), Donal Lunny (musician), Damien Dempsey (singer), Trevor Knight (musician), Eoin Dillon (ceoltóir), Dearbhla Glynn (film-maker), Neilí Conroy (actor), Freda Hughes (IPSC chairperson)

These artists are aware of the Israeli Foreign Ministry's statement in 2005 that “We see culture as a propaganda tool of the first rank, and ... do not differentiate between propaganda and culture.” These artists refuse to allow their art to be exploited by an apartheid state that disregards international law and universal principles of human rights..

Dr. Raymond Deane, renowned classical composer & IPSC Cultural Boycott Officer


The pledge, described by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) as "a ground-breaking initiative", has now been signed by over 150 Irish creative and performing artists including Christy Moore, Andy Irvine, Seamus Deane, Sinéad Cusack, Jimmy MacCarthy, Margaretta Darcy and Conor Kostick. It commits signatories to boycotting the Israeli state under it respects international law, and reads as follows:

"In response to the call from Palestinian civil society for a cultural boycott of Israel, we pledge not to avail of any invitation to perform or exhibit in Israel, nor to accept any funding from any institution linked to the government of Israel, until such time as Israel complies with international law and universal principles of human rights."

Speaking about his support for the pledge, Kíla’s uilleann piper Eoin Dillon who, along with jazz guitarist Sami Moukaddem, played his brand new song Rachel Corrie, said: “I encourage all Irish artists to take this pledge and thereby honour not only their own dignity but more importantly, the dignity of the Palestinian people.” Eoin's brother Shane was kidnapped by Israeli commandos on May 31st this year when he was first mate on board the Challenger 1 which was part of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla.

The concert also saw performances by Sami Moukaddem, Naisrín and Zahrah Elsafty (who preformed the Palestinian song La Ahada Yalem), and Treasa Ní Cheannabháin who along with her daughters performed her own song An dTiocfása Liomsa (Amhrán Ghaza).



The Pledge

IPSC Cultural Boycott Officer and coordinator of the pledge Dr. Raymond Deane, himself a renowned classical composer, said: “These artists are aware of the Israeli Foreign Ministry's statement in 2005 that “We see culture as a propaganda tool of the first rank, and ... do not differentiate between propaganda and culture.” These artists refuse to allow their art to be exploited by an apartheid state that disregards international law and universal principles of human rights, but look forward to the day when normal cultural relations can be re-established with an Israel that fully complies with such laws and principles.”

I encourage all Irish artists to take this pledge and thereby honour not only their own dignity but more importantly, the dignity of the Palestinian people.

Eoin Dillon, Irish band Kila's Uilleann Piper

Dr. Deane continued: “Culture cannot stand aloof from politics. Whether or not art is 'above politics', its presentation and representation in the real world can all too easily be hijacked by oppressive states. With this pledge, Irish artists have an opportunity to distance themselves from such exploitation, and to take a non-violent stand on behalf of the oppressed Palestinian people. Indeed, we have set an example here today that will be followed in every part of the world by thousands of artists who will refuse to allow themselves to be used as propaganda tools by the Israeli apartheid state.”

Wrapping up the concert, IPSC National Chairperson Freda Hughes thanked all those who have thus far signed the pledge, and said: “All of these artists have shown they are people of principle and conviction. Of course, one does not have to be an artist to take a stand against Israeli apartheid. Every single one of us can aid the Palestinian people in their struggle for human, civil, political and national rights by getting involved in the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel. BDS is a campaign of which this pledge is one important facet, but there are many more avenues that people from all walks of life can get involved in, from consumer and academic boycotts to pressuring the government to take meaningful action. This is what Palestinian civil society has asked us to do, and the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign is proud to have been at the forefront of this campaign since the BDS call went out in 2005.”

A full – and regularly updated - list of the signatories to the boycott pledge can be viewed online at http://www.ipsc.ie/pledge - If you are an Irish artist or an artist based in Ireland and would like to add your signature, please contact culturalboycott [at] ipsc.ie

The full PACBI statement of endorsement can be read at http://ipsc.ie/pledge/#2

This launch comes two weeks to the day after the IPSC handed in over 6,000 signatures calling for Dunnes Stores to refuse to stock Israeli products at the head office of Dunnes - report here: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/97316

IPSC Home: http://www.ipsc.ie

Source: http://cosmos.ucc.ie/cs1064/jabowen/IPSC/ipsc/displayRelease.php?releaseID=390


IPSC "Irish artists' pledge to boycott Israel"


Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign
August 2010


In August 2010 the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) launched the following pledge, initially signed by over 140 Irish creative and performing artists, whereby they undertake to boycott the Israeli state under present circumstances:

"In response to the call from Palestinian civil society for a cultural boycott of Israel, we pledge not to avail of any invitation to perform or exhibit in Israel, nor to accept any funding from any institution linked to the government of Israel, until such time as Israel complies with international law and universal principles of human rights."



Described by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) as "a ground-breaking initiative", this pledge has so far been signed by over 140 Irish creative and performing artists: novelists, playwrights, poets, actors, composers, singers, dancers, painters, sculptors and filmmakers, ranging from those starting out on their careers to household names. - See here for the full PACBI statement of endorsement.

According to IPSC Cultural Boycott Officer Dr. Raymond Deane, "These artists are aware of the Israeli Foreign Ministry's statement in 2005 that “We see culture as a propaganda tool of the first rank, and...do not differentiate between propaganda and culture.” These artists refuse to allow their art to be exploited by an apartheid state that disregards international law and universal principles of human rights, but look forward to the day when normal cultural relations can be re-established with an Israel that fully complies with such laws and principles."

Dr. Deane, himself a classical composer and a signatory of the pledge, recalled Nelson Mandela's dictum that "boycott is not a principle, it is a tactic depending upon circumstances." Dr. Deane added: "Five years ago, when 170 Palestinian civil society organisations called a campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, they provided a central plank for worldwide activism on behalf of their cause."

Dr. Deane continued, "Culture cannot stand aloof from such activism. Whether or not art is 'above politics', its presentation and representation in the real world can all too easily be hijacked by oppressive states. With this pledge, Irish artists have an opportunity to distance themselves from such exploitation, and to take a non-violent stand on behalf of the oppressed Palestinian people."



List of Signatories


Full List of Signatories

Last Updated 13th August 2010

1. Astrid Adler - Visual Artist, Musician, Mime artist
2. John Arden – Playwright, Novelist
3. Siobhán Armstrong - Musician
4. Derek Ball - Composer
5. Robert Ballagh - Visual Artist
6. Margo Banks – Painter
7. Cormac Begley - Musician
8. Liam Bradley - Musician
9. Diarmuid Breatnach – Musician, Poet
10. Cormac Breatnach – Musician
11. Cecily Brennan – Artist
12. Ronan Browne – Musician
13. Conor Byrne - Musician
14. Roisin Byrne - Visual artist
15. Séamas Cain – Poet, performance artist
16. Moya Cannon – Poet
17. Liam Carson - Scríbhneoir
18. Clare Cashman – Visual artist
19. Rhona Clarke – Composer
20. Siobhán Cleary - Composer
21. Mickey Coleman - Singer/songwriter
22. Joe Comerford - Film-maker
23. Michael Connerty – Musician (Moutpiece)
24. Neilí Conroy – Actor
25. Dorothy Cross – Sculptor
26. Charles Cullen – Visual artist
27. Michael Cullen - Painter
28. Cindy Cummings - Dance Artist
29. Sinéad Cusack - Actor
30. Margaretta Darcy – Author and playwright
31. John F. Deane - Writer
32. Raymond Deane - Composer
33. Seamus Deane – Author
34. Renate DeBrun – Painter and printmaker
35. Damien Dempsey - Singer
36. Tim Dennehy – Singer/Songwriter
37. Eoin Dillon - Ceoltóir (Kíla)
38. Keith Donald – Musician
39. Philip Donnery - Musician
40. Gráinne Dowling - Visual artist
41. Kevin Doyle – Writer
42. Robert Doyle - Musician
43. Roger Doyle - Composer
44. Felim Egan - Visual artist
45. Martin A. Egan – Musician
46. Naisrín Elsafty - Singer
47. Róisín Elsafty – Singer
48. Zahrah Elsafty – Singer
49. Elaine Feeney - Poet
50. Stephen Gardner – Composer
51. Anthony Glavin - Novelist and short story writer
52. Dearbhla Glynn – Film-maker
53. Johnny Gogan – Film-maker
54. Carmel Gunning – Musician
55. Marie Hanlon – Visual artist
56. Robbie Harris - Musician
57. Paul Hayes - Composer
58. Graham Henderson – Musician
59. Donogh Hennessy - Musician
60. Rita Ann Higgins – Poet
61. Michael Holohan - Composer
62. Andy Irvine – Musician
63. Ryan Johnson - Musician
64. Fergus Johnston - Composer
65. Fred Johnston – Poet
66. Trevor Joyce – Poet
67. Bernadette Kiely – Painter
68. Brian King – Sculptor
69. Vincent Kennedy - Composer
70. Trevor Knight - Music/Theatre
71. Conor Kostick - Novelist.
72. Gavin Kostick – Playwright
73. Dave Lordan - Poet
74. Donal Lunny –Musician
75. Pól MacAdaim – Singer/songwriter
76. Iarla Mac Aodha Bhuí - Scríbhneoir
77. Mickey MacConnell – Singer/Songwriter
78. Tony Mac Mahon – Musician
79. Lorcán Mac Mathúna - Singer
80. Brian Maguire - Visual artist
81. Alice Maher - Visual Artist
82. Brenda Malloy – Musician
83. Jimmy McCarthy - Singer/songwriter
84. Martin McElhinney - Musician (Coldwar)
85. Paul Nash – Musician (Coldwar)
86. Trevor McLave - (Coldwar)
87. Joe McGowan - Author
88. Jackie McKenna - Sculptor
89. John McLachlan - Composer
90. Joleen McLaughlin – Musician (Henry Sisters)
91. Karen McLaughlin – Musician (Henry Sisters)
92. Lorna McLaughlin – Musician (Henry Sisters)
93. Tina Mc Laughlin- Singer/Songwriter
94. Eoin McLochlainn - Visual artist
95. John McSherry - Musician
96. Paul Meehan – Poet
97. Christy Moore - Musician
98. Thom Moore - Songwriter, writer/translator
99. Sharon (Shaz) Morgan – Musician, Photographer
100. Fiach Moriarty – Singer/Songwriter
101. Sami Moukkadem - Musician, film-maker, writer
102. Hassan Ould Muctar - Musician
103. Conor Mullan - Musician
104. Janet Mullarney – Visual artist
105. Gráinne Mulvey – Composer
106. Dieredre Murphy - Dancer
107. Jimmy Murphy – Playwright
108. Niamh Ní Charra – Musician
109. Peadar Ó Ceannabháin - Singer
110. Saileog Ní Cheannabháin - Musician
111. Treasa Ní Cheannabháin – Singer
112. Áine Ní Chuaig – Musician
113. Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh – Musician/Singer
114. Liam Noonan – Musician (Digital Disorder)
115. Dave Murphy – Musician (Digital Disorder)
116. Keith McGovern – Musician (Digital Disorder)
117. Ken Deasy – Musician (Digital Disorder)
118. Pádraig Ó Baoill – Scríbhneoir
119. Niall Ó Callanáin - Musician
120. Eamonn O'Doherty - Architect, Sculptor
121. Méabh O Hare – Musician/Film-maker
122. Jane O'Leary – Composer
123. Brian Ó hUiginn - Musician
124. Donal O'Kelly – Playwright/Actor
125. Ciarán Ó Maonaigh - Ceoltóir
126. Seosamh O Neachtain – Dancer
127. Eoin O'Neill - Musician
128. Jerry O'Reilly – Singer
129. Peadar Ó Riada – Ceoltóir
130. Gregory Rosenstock - Writer
131. Pauline Scanlon - Singer
132. Rossa Ó Snodaigh - Ceoltóir (Kíla)
133. Paul O'Toole – Singer/Songwriter
134. Michael Quane – Sculptor
135. Bob Quinn - Visual artist/filmmaker
136. Jim Ricks - Visual Artist
137. Stephen Rothschild - Painter/printmaker.
138. Mary Russell - Author
139. Dermot Seymour - Painter
140. John W. Sexton – Poet.
141. Eileen Sheehan - Poet
142. Ronan Sheehan - Novelist
143. Michael Smith – Poet and translator
144. Moira Tierney – Film-maker
145. Hugh Travers - Writer
146. Caoimhín Vallely - Ceoltóir
147. Laura Vecchi - Painter/writer
148. John Wakeman – Poet
149. Hilary Wakeman - Author
150. Hazel Walker - Visual artist
151. William Wall - Author
152. Ronan Wilmot - Actor/Director
153. Steve Woods – Film-maker
154. Adam Wyeth - Poet

If you are an Irish artist or an artist based in Ireland and would like to add your signature, please contact culturalboycott [at] ipsc.ie


Source: http://www.ipsc.ie/pledge/





Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-rUtjJQL1U

Irish artists make BDS history, issuing the first nation-wide ‘pledge’ to boycott Israeli apartheid

PACBI
11 August 2010

Occupied Ramallah, 11 August 2010

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) strongly welcomes the Irish artists’ 'pledge’ to boycott Israeli cultural institutions until Israel complies with international law. This pledge not only represents a significant victory for the ethical responsibilities of international cultural figures; a key factor in the cultural boycott of Israel, but is a ground breaking strategy in supporting Palestinian struggle for freedom and justice.

In the last few years, many international cultural figures have come out in support of the cultural boycott of Israel. A statement authored by John Berger in support of the boycott gathered dozens of signatures, including some celebrities. [1] Montreal, Canada, witnessed a most impressive initiative in this respect, where 500 artists issued a statement this last February committing themselves to “fighting against [Israeli] apartheid” and calling upon “all artists and cultural producers across the country and around the world to adopt a similar position in this global struggle” for Palestinian rights. [2] Yet, the Irish artists have raised the bar of solidarity by pioneering the first nation-wide cultural stance in support of the boycott of Israel.

Inspired by the South African anti-apartheid cultural boycott, the Palestinian academic and cultural boycott call [3] has relied entirely on moral pressure, appealing to the conscience of the artists in question as well as their fans. The main rationale behind this call is that performing in a state that practices occupation, colonization and apartheid, as Israel does, cannot be regarded as a purely artistic act, if any such act exists. Regardless of intentions, such an act is a conscious form of complicity that is manipulated by Israel in its frantic efforts to whitewash its persistent violations of international law and Palestinian rights. This is because artistic performances in Israel promote a “business as usual” attitude that normalizes and sanitizes a state that has persistently committed war crimes over several decades -- in Gaza, Jerusalem, the Naqab (Negev), and most recently, in the high seas against international humanitarian relief workers aboard the Freedom Flotilla.

An artist who performs in Israel today -- just like any artist who violated the boycott and performed in Sun City, South Africa, during apartheid -- can only be seen by Palestinians and people of conscience around the world as motivated by profit and personal gain far more than by moral principles. We realize that Israeli concert promoters offer large sums of money to lure international performers as part of the Foreign Ministry-run “Brand Israel”[4] campaign, designed explicitly to hide Israel’s criminal violations of human rights under a guise of artistic and scientific glamour and a deceptive image of cultural excellence and “liberalism.” But we hope artists will resist the temptation and assert the primacy of human rights and justice over financial reward. Within this context, the main impact of the boycott at this stage is to expose Israel as a pariah, to increase its isolation, thus raising the price of its injustices against the Palestinian people and challenging international complicity in perpetuating its occupation and apartheid.

The Palestinian academic and cultural boycott movement has not witnessed a sustained surge in cultural boycott of Israel such as has occurred in the last year and a half, since the Israeli war of aggression on Gaza. Today, major performing artists are cancelling concerts in Israel and world bestselling authors are endorsing BDS. [5] With this growth, the movement is showing more signs of its potential to transform international opinion in much the way that the divestment movement isolated the South African apartheid regime. In 1965, the American Committee on Africa, following the lead of prominent British arts associations, sponsored a historic declaration against South African apartheid, signed by more than 60 cultural personalities. It read: "We say no to apartheid. We take this pledge in solemn resolve to refuse any encouragement of, or indeed, any professional association with the present Republic of South Africa, this until the day when all its people shall equally enjoy the educational and cultural advantages of that rich and beautiful land." [6] A year before that, in 1964, the Irish Anti-Apartheid Movement promoted a declaration signed by 28 Irish playwrights that they would not permit their work to be performed before segregated audiences in South Africa. [7] Today, Irish and Canadian artists have opened up the way for achieving the same level of commitment from international artists in isolating apartheid Israel.

The great majority of Palestinian cultural figures stand solidly behind the call for a cultural boycott of Israel, [8] as do all the main cultural institutions and associations. Palestinian artists often express the commonly held view that world artists have a moral obligation to uphold universal principles of human rights and justice in order to help end this multi-tiered oppression against the Palestinians. Irish artists have today taken a historic step in enhancing the movement that would exert effective pressure on Israel and bring about freedom and just peace. For that, we salute these principled and ethically responsible Irish artists.


PACBI

www.PACBI.org

pacbi@pacbi.org

 

[1] http://www.pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=415

[2] http://www.tadamon.ca/post/5824

[3] http://www.pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=869

[4] http://www.israel21c.org/opinion/jewish-week-marketing-a-new-image

[5] http://www.pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=1291

[6] http://www.tcg.org/publications/at/MayJune08/positions.cfm

[7] http://www.anc.org.za/ancdocs/history/boycotts/cultural.html

[8] http://pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=315

Source: http://www.pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=1328&key=Irish%20artists%20make%20BDS%20history


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