Matisyahu Proud of Being Targeted by Israel Foes by the Forward

Matisyahu Proud of Being Targeted by Israel Foes

American Jewish reggae singer Matisyahu said that he was proud to stand up to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement protestors who attempted to bar him from playing at a Spanish music festival.

“I’m glad that it happened in the end,” Matisyahu told Haaretz on Wednesday after visiting former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres’ Peace Center in Jaffa, Israel. “I was given the opportunity to stand up for what I believe in, and as a proud Jew, to stand up for Israel.”

Matisyahu was slotted to play at Spain’s Rototom SunSplash reggae music festival in August before BDS activists pressured the event’s organizers to disinvite him because of his support for Israel. After a backlash from Jewish organizations and the Spanish government, the festival organizers apologized and invited Matisyahu back. He performed in front of a crowd that included people waving Palestinian flags.

On Wednesday, Matisyahu did not go as far to say the BDS movement is anti-Semitic.

“There’s probably a thousand different reasons why a thousand different people in that group are doing what they’re doing,” he told Haaretz. “Whether or not they’re anti-Semitic or they’re this or they’re that doesn’t matter to me so much.”

In the meeting with Peres on Wednesday, Matisyahu said he was proud to play in Israel, especially during the violence in Jerusalem

“I think it’s an important thing for Jews outside of Israel, American Jews like myself, to come to Israel no matter what’s happening here,” he said.

“Not only do you represent peace and hope and togetherness, but also courage,” Peres told him.

Matisyahu will perform at the Sultan’s Pool in Jerusalem on Saturday night.

Author

Matisyahu Proud of Being Targeted by Israel Foes

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires 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 and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. 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 Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Matisyahu Proud of Being Targeted by Israel Foes

Thank you!

This article has been sent!

Close