Roger Waters Attacks Scarlett Johansson, Neil Young Over Israel Support

Facebook Posts Garners 3,000 Likes

getty images

By JTA

Published February 02, 2014.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Roger Waters assailed actress Scarlett Johansson and musician Neil Young on his Facebook page for their support of Israel.

In a Facebook post on Saturday, Waters – who has publicly called for boycotts against Israel and has made personal pleas to artists not to perform in Israel – said that he has written privately to both Young and Johansson in recent days and was turning to his Facebook page to make a public plea to encourage them to drop their support of Israel.

Neil Young is scheduled to perform in Israel in July. Johansson last week ended her relationship with the human rights group Oxfam following a protracted debate over her role as spokeswoman for the Israeli company SodaStream, which has a factory in the West Bank, which employs both Israeli and Palestinian workers.

In his public letter, Waters said Johansson’s “choice of Soda Stream over Oxfam” is “an act of intellectual, political, and civil about face, that we, all those of us who care about the downtrodden, the oppressed, the occupied, the second class, will find it hard to rationalize.”

The letter cites alleged human rights abuses by Israel against the Bedouin living in southern Israel and poses several questions about how Palestinians live under Israeli rule in the West Bank.

He concludes his letter, which mostly is directed at Johansson, by saying: “Scarlett, you are undeniably cute, but if you think Soda Stream is building bridges towards peace you are also undeniably not paying attention.”

The post received more than 3,000 likes and 1,300 comments by Sunday morning.

“Music is supposed to act as a bridge between people and cultures and not create a gap between them. Your attitude doesn’t help to break the wall, it only makes it higher,” read one comment. “Thank you so much Roger! For caring and bringing attention to this issue where many other celebrities keep their mouths closed about,” read another.

In August, Waters published an open letter calling on fellow musicians to join a boycott of Israel. He also recently came under fire for using at in his concerts a huge inflated balloon in the shape of a wild boar with a prominently visible Star of David, as well as a hammer and sickle, crosses and a dollar sign, among other symbols. It is a gimmick he has used for several years.

Meanwhile, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman wrote in a Facebook post on Saturday night that “Our Oscar goes to Scarlett” for her “brave stand against immoral hypocrites.”

“There was an attempt by pro-Palestinian organizations to attack Johansson for being a ‘brand ambassador’ for SodaStream, which has a factory in Ma’aleh Adumim. However, the actress has not folded or apologized in the face of these attacks, rather she took a clearly principled stand against those who disguise their classic anti-Semitism under false pretenses,” Liberman wrote.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • What could be wrong with a bunch of guys kicking back with a steak and a couple of beers and talking about the Seder? Try everything. #ManSeder
  • BREAKING: Smirking killer singled out Jews for death in suburban Kansas City rampage. 3 die in bloody rampage at JCC and retirement home.
  • Real exodus? For Mimi Minsky, it's screaming kids and demanding hubby on way down to Miami, not matzo in the desert.
  • The real heroines of Passover prep aren't even Jewish. But the holiday couldn't happen without them.
  • Is Handel’s ‘Messiah’ an anti-Semitic screed?
  • Meet the Master of the Matzo Ball.
  • Pierre Dulaine wants to do in his hometown of Jaffa what he did for kids in Manhattan: teach them to dance.
  • "The first time I met Mick Jagger, I said, 'Those are the tackiest shoes I’ve ever seen.'” Jewish music journalist Lisa Robinson remembers the glory days of rock in her new book, "There Goes Gravity."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.