Roger Waters Chides Bon Jovi for Choosing to Perform in Israel

The prominent BDS activist tells the band that they have lost the opportunity to 'stand on the side of justice.'

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Haaretz
Singer Jon Bon Jovi performs with his band in Jakarta, Indonesia, September 11, 2015.
Singer Jon Bon Jovi performs with his band in Jakarta, Indonesia, September 11, 2015.Credit: Reuters
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Haaretz

Former Pink Floyd member Roger Waters has sent a letter to Jon Bon Jovi and his bandmates ahead of their concert in Tel Aviv, which is set to take place Saturday.

In his letter, Waters, a prominent artistic figure in the boycott, divest and sanctions movement, wrote that he often sends such letters to other musicians, "encouraging them not to give succor to the Israeli governments apartheid policies by performing in Israel."

Waters didn't try to persuade Bon Jovi and bandmates David Bryan and Tico Torres to cancel the gig however, noting instead that in light of recent comments made by Bon Jovi himself, Water understands they are "determined to proceed."

"You stand shoulder to shoulder with the settler who burned the baby, with the bulldozer driver who crushed Rachel Corrie," said the letter, referring to the American peace activist who was killed in the Gaza Strip in 2003 by a military bulldozer.

The letter also listed other incidents in which Israeli soldiers shot and killed Palestinians.

"You had a chance to stand on the side of justice," continued Waters, providing links to news articles about conscientious objectors, hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners, and accounts of the damage caused by Operation Protective Edge in the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2014.

Waters sat down with Haaretz journalist Gideon Levy in August, and spoke about everything from his political views and his tragic family history to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, how he became an activist and the circumstances under which he would be happy to play in Israel once again.

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