Palestinian resistance, global BDS, and the 2021 Sydney Festival boycott:…
why Sydney Festival board members should answer their critics: Image
Hamish telling RN breakfast audience that the ABC has repeatedly invited “Sydney Festival leadership” to appear on the program. He says BDS convenor and Israeli embassy spokespo up shortly.
the creative director cancelled. The chairman of the Sydney Festival Board has apparently committed to appearing on RN soon. Sara Saleh up now.
over 40% of performers and crew are now part of the Sydney Festival boycott. It sends a clear message to governments not to support an apartheid regime and the oppression of Palestinian people - Saleh.
Hamish frames BDS as causing hardship for artists. Saleh says the issue is the Festival accepting support from a regime that commits atrocities. He asks if artists fully understand what boycott means? Does the campaign border on the aggressive?
they are building a future based on freedom and justice and love says Saleh. Especially as we are on stolen land and complicit in colonialism here. Hamish responds with Noonan’s socials.
now Hamish is claiming that he “wonders” if artists - who have joined a boycott at considerable financial and emotional cost - “authentically” support the BDS campaign. Far out.
she understands where he is coming from, says Saleh, and she does not wish to engage in islamaphobic debate. There is nothing controversial about fighting for freedom, equality and justice, says Saleh.
what about meanies targeting board member Benjamin Law on the bad social media [paraphrased]? Saleh says the campaign has had lots of conversations with many people, asking for a more ethical approach, replicating the successful campaign that ended apartheid in South Africa.
heh. Saleh is “not going to assume the reach” of the boycott campaign. She is incredibly politely trying to explain to McDonald that opponents of BDS wildly overstate its influence.
for Palestinians the key point is brutality against and oppression of Palestinian people, says Saleh. They are asking people to join with them in opposing apartheid.
the Israeli spokespo seems to be talking about zionism. “They will do everything in their power to destroy, to destruct” he says.
the usual conflation of struggle for justice with anti-semitism. Hamish asks for evidence. The Israeli spokespo cites a 2016 campaign on college campuses in the US. That’s a bit of a stretch isn’t it? asks Hamish.
Hamish says he “understands the Sydney Festival Board is split”. Would you accept the money back if the Board tries to give it back? We must live with this violence, says Israeli spokespo sorrowfully.
the interview wraps with another statement about the cancelled slot with Sydney Festival creative director; the commitment from chairman Kirk to front up soon; and “strong feelings” about the “issue”.

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13 Jan
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