CANCELED: Neil Young's Upcoming Tel-Aviv, Israel Concert
For Immediate Release:
NEIL YOUNG & CRAZY HORSE CANCEL CONCERT IN TEL AVIV
13th July, 2014 -- (BURBANK, CA) -- Due to the current security situation in Tel Aviv Israel, Neil Young & Crazy Horse have been forced to cancel their concert appearance originally scheduled for July 17th in Hayarkon Park.
A spokesperson for Young's camp said: "It is with heavy hearts and deep sadness that we must cancel our one and only Israeli concert due to tensions which have rendered the event unsafe at this time. We'll miss the opportunity to play for our fans and look forward to playing in Israel and Palestine in peace."
"I will be making donations to both the Louise Tillie Alpert Youth Music Centre of Israel, and Heartbeat", said Mr. Young, "two organizations that teach music to Palestinian and Israeli youth simultaneously by enabling them to play music together."
Last night, at Neil Young & Crazy Horse's concert in Hyde Park, London during the opening song "Love And Only Love", Neil inserted the phrase "free the people of Palestine".
Only hours later, according to JPost.com, Neil Young's upcoming Tel-Aviv, Israel concert was canceled. The reason being cited is “The cancelation is due to the barrage of rockets that have been fired in recent days and the concern for the safety of an audience for such an event.”
Around the world, this announcement is being met by many with ridicule over the irony and unmitigated hypocrisy. Of course, anyone who isn't following the "mass media fear based propaganda matrix" knows this is a laughable excuse and that rockets are not pounding Tel Aviv and concert goers have little to worry about in terms of safety.
Earlier this month, we posted on the whole issue of Neil Young's Upcoming Tel-Aviv, Israel Concert: "Don't Feel Like Satan But I Am To Them", which included background, context, reader comments and a poll. The poll results are displayed above and clearly the majority of fans want the concert to go forward.
Just prior to the cancellation notice, Roger Waters released Open Letter to Neil Young:
In light of the appalling recent events in Israel and Gaza and my dismay at the the lack of any response from our governments and in a final appeal to Neil's possible attachment to the rights of all human beings, not just the disenfranchised natives of North America, but all human beings all over the world, I am publishing that letter now.Just an aside, but Roger don't hold your breath on the invite.
Here it Is.
Dear Neil Young.
There are rumors flying about that you are considering doing shows in Tel Aviv this year.
The picket lines have been crossed in this last year by one or two lightweights from our community but no one of your stature. Woody Guthrie would turn in his grave. Neil Young! You are one of my biggest heroes, you are one of a very short list, you, John Lennon, Woody Guthrie, Huddy Ledbetter, Harry Belafonte, Sam Cooke, Billie Holiday and, like some others, but not many, your songs have always been redolent of love and humanity and compassion for your fellow man and woman. I find it hard to believe that you would turn your back on the indigenous people of Palestine. That you would lend support to, and encourage and legitimize, with your presence, a colonial apartheid regime, largely settled from Europe, that seeks to confine the native people of the land, either in exile or in second class status in reservations and ghettos.
Please, brother, tell me it ain't so.
As I recall, back in the day, along with the rest of us (Stevie van Zandt, Bruce, Led Zep etc etc etc etc) you would not "Play In Sun City" I am asking you to stand on the same moral ground now. The late, great, Nelson Mandela lives on in us, we cannot let him down. He was explicit in his position and I quote, " We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians". It is time for "Rock Against Racism" to show some of it's muscle by refusing to lend our names to the whitewashing of the illegal colonization of Palestinian land and the systematic oppression of its indigenous people. Unfortunately the opposition lobby has a lot of muscle too. They spend millions on their "Hasbara"(If like me you have no Hebrew)”Explaining” or to you and me "Propaganda". The propaganda machine is well oiled and ruthless. We, on the other hand, have only our commitment to non-violent resistance to lie down in front of the IDF caterpillar tractors that would raze the native people from the land of Palestine. We stand with those people, and with all the brave people of Israel and Palestine, Jewish and Arab alike who oppose The Israeli Governments brutal policies. We stand with Rachel Corrie, the young American woman who gave her life under the caterpillar's tracks. Please join me and countless other artists all over the world in solidarity with the oppressed and the disenfranchised. It is time to heed the peoples call. People like The Bedouin, the nomadic people of the Negev in the arid south of Israel, please research their plight, one village, Al-Araqib has been destroyed 63 times by IDF Bulldozers. If you are in doubt about any of this, I will go with you to Palestine, and Israel, if they’ll let me in, you will see what I have seen, and then let us figure out the right thing to do.
By the way I watched your Bridge School concert on YouTube last year, it was very moving, you were, of course magnificent. You had asked me to perform, and as I explained to your management, I would have gladly done so had I not already been committed to The Wall Tour in Europe and Stand Up For Heroes in New York. This year I will be pleased and proud to come and support you if you call.
With respect, and love.
Back on subject, if ever there was a concert audience that needed to hear songs like Love And Only Love, Blowin' In The Wind, Rockin' In The Free World, among others, it was the audience this concert was intended.
So much for peace when music is just more "collateral damage".
On the other hand, maybe Neil will invite Roger to Bridge? Maybe re-schedule the Tel-Aviv, Israel concert for Shoreline? How about it?
Istanbul concert still on for now... likewise for Rolling Stones in Israel...
"Nobody's free until everybody's free."
~~ Fannie Lou Hamer
In the meantime, here's the original poll, flawed and outdated as it might be at this point...
So can't we all just keep on Rockin' In The Free World, O.K.?