Saturday night activists in Amsterdam pulled off a fantastic action at an Israeli whitewashing event promoted as “Israel=Culture” the first Israeli theatre mini-festival in Amsterdam, “three days of presenting the rich and vibrant theatre culture of Israel.”
Spot On theater’s production stars Lia Koenig, the “first lady of Israeli theatre”, and the event is dubbed as a “starting point of exchange of ideas and collaboration between Dutch and Israeli theater makers, that will grow from year to year.”
Dutch activists managed to enter the event after purchasing tickets. They videoed themselves prior to, and after the loud action, on their departure yelling “BOYCOTT ISRAEL”. As the video explains they were “knocked down by security and audience so we couldn’t film ourselves” during the action. The video does show the arrest of one of their team, Abulkasim Al-Jaberi. In total 9 people were arrested, however 8 have since been released. Al-Jaberi remains in custody.
Someone inside the threatre recorded their protest (video below). Very loud and very effective.
For folks doubting the whitewash-element, just read the text on their Facebook page: “Be there to support Israel and the positive ideas it represents. We celebrate life, humanity, creativity”, alongside a photo of Koenig, the iconic Israeli actress.
Quoting a contact in Amsterdam:
We’re making this into a big thing, also targeting the cultural institution that sponsored the event: the Prins Bernard Cultuurfonds [Cultural Fund]. Yesterday the fund reacted on criticism by stating their decision has nothing to do with politics. A classic. They’ve obviously missed out on the Facebook-page of the event and the other sponsors: the Israeli Embassy and El Al. We’ll make sure this will never happen again.
Here’s the action inside the event: