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Stars — They’re Just Like Us: Celebs outraged over Gaza are speaking out

Celebrities are outraged over Israel’s killing of protesters in Gaza.

At the Cannes Film Festival in southern France actor Benicio del Toro joined about a dozen Palestinians for a minute of silence, others tweeted their grief and frustrations.

This year, Palestine has a tent with its flag raised for the first time at Cannes. Palestinian filmmaker May Odeh told Reuters, “It’s really crazy to be here with the films, with the filmmakers, talking about our future plans while our kids and families are suffering from the Israeli attack on them.”

The Palestinian flag on display outside of the Palestine tent at the Cannes Film Festival. (Photo: Palestinian Film Institute.)

On social media Gigi Hadid, Bette Midler, Morgan Freeman, Ava DuVernay, and Judd Apatow to name a few, tweeted about Israel’s use of live-fire on Palestinian protesters in Gaza that left 61 dead including 8 children.

Hadid posted screen shots of Al Jazeera’s coverage alongside an image of the Nakba with text written by a relative,

“Almost One Million Palestinians were violently forced out of their country and never allowed back to Palestine. The Hadid family was amongst them and they fled in fear to Syria where they became refugees.”

Actor Morgan Freeman took aim at President Donald Trump:

The conversation about Israel and Gaza has even pierced into mainstream outlets beyond the network news. Yesterday morning New York City’s Hip Hop station Hot 97’s morning show, “Ebro in the Morning,” dedicated an entire segment to yesterday’s demonstration in Gaza where the two blasted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Donald Trump:


Ebro: “Sometimes it isn’t just as easy as pick a side. Sometimes the place that you live, or the thing that you love is just wrong. Straight up, and being evil. ”

Rosenberg: “And if you were in another country and you felt you had a connection to the U.S., but under Trump’s regime would you be telling people, ‘oh my god, I love everything the U.S. does?’ No. You’d be like yo, I don’t know what’s going on over there.

Netanyahu is a bad dude, and he’s been bad for a long time.”

Ebro: “And he’s under investigation right now for war crimes and some corruption.

Rosenberg: This is a guy who when Yitzhak Rabin was working on the peace process  with Arafat, which was potentially, should have been one of the most important things to have ever happened, he was calling Rabin a Nazi for making peace with Arafat back then. that’s who Netanyahu is, that’s who he’s always been. He’s always been a crazy right-winger and now he’s running the show.

Ebro: “And a war monger”

Rosenberg: “And a war monger. And now he’s got a friend who is perfect because Trump loves violence. Wherever there can be violence, wherever there can be oppression towards brown people and Muslim people Trump is for it.”

Here are tweets from other celebrities that have spoken out:

NFL free agent Oday Aboushi retweeted:

Mondoweiss Editors

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29 Responses

  1. ckg on May 16, 2018, 11:21 am

    That’s especially great that Gigi Hadid spoke up. She’s got 9.2 million followers on Twitter. Netanyahu has only 1.4 million on his personal account and 0.6 million on his PM of Israel account. Gal Gadot has 1.8 million.

  2. Kay24 on May 16, 2018, 11:34 am

    I applaud all these brave celebrities for openly criticizing this massacre, risking their careers as they do so. The world needs to hear more. I am still waiting for the others to speak out. Just like the Congress, they do not want to jeopardize their jobs and lucrative roles. It is sad when a nation is controlled to this extent by a foreign nation and it’s lobbies here. In the US you can easily criticize the president, but no one dares to criticize the zionists and their terrible crimes.

    Until our congress is able to remove those shackles, and reject the shekels, we will always be in this status quo.

  3. John O on May 16, 2018, 12:17 pm

    Tonight is the 75th anniversary of the legendary “Dambusters” raid in 1943. I think another dam has just been breached.

  4. Spring Renouncer on May 16, 2018, 1:20 pm

    I’m really impressed by Hot 97’s honest discussion of the issue. In that small 15 minute conversation the Hip Hop radio station featured more honesty about Israel and Palestine than mainstream American media – CNN, MSNBC, FOX and the NYTs – feature in a whole decade of their reporting. And this is true even though news isn’t Hot 97’s main concern! Please be inspired MSM.

    • Jethro on May 16, 2018, 7:54 pm

      Please be inspired MSM.

      Sorry. The only thing that’s going to happen is that the powers-that-be will be inspired to monitor the output of Hot97’s on-air personalities–something they hadn’t had to worry about before.

    • rhkroell on May 16, 2018, 11:16 pm

      Agreed. A pretty well-informed, passionate discussion of present-day Israel and what it feels like to be “Jewish” — or count some “Jewish” people in our invariably mixed ancestry — while holding U.S. citizenship today. I would only like to interject that Ebro and Rosenberg could clarify some of the absolutely valid points they make by explaining that an ethnonationalist state like Israel can be usefully compared and contrasted with other ethnonationalist states in world history like, for example, the Confederate States of America and/or Nazi Germany.

      The point I would like to make is that the Zionism can be better understood, perhaps, as a mass phenomena. Like other racist creeds — such as 19th-century Anglo-Saxonism and early 20th-century Aryanism — its hierophants appeal to a what has often been described as a “mass instinct.” Despite objective evidence which factually disproves common ancestral bonds, Zionists are emotionally cocksure that they share a common ancestry and heritage with other “Jews.” The essence of the ethnonationalist bond is “a psychological bond that joins a people and differentiates it, in the subconscious conviction of its members, from all nonmembers in a most vital way” (“Beyond Reason: the Nature of the Ethnonational Bond,” Connor, Walker in ETHNICITY [An Oxford Reader], ed. by Hutchinson, John and Anthony D. Smith, Oxford: Oxford UP, 1996, pp. 69-75).

      Critics of ethnonationalism often fail to recognize the emotional depth of the ethnonationalist’s identity, demonstrated, for example, by the German maxim, “Blut will zu Blut,” meaning: “People of the same blood [ancestry or heritage] attract!” Connor translates a Romanian poem written in 1848 to illustrate his argument:

      It is in it that we were born, it is our mother.
      We are men because it reared us;
      We are free because we move in it;
      If we are are angered, it soothes our pain with national songs.
      Through it we talk today to our parents who lived thousands of years back;
      Through it our descendants and posterity thousands of years later will know us (p. 73).

      • rhkroell on May 16, 2018, 11:49 pm

        “In the late nineteenth century Anglo-Saxonism attained a particularly prominent place in public or popular discourses of nation, for several reasons. First and perhaps most important, the century’s proliferating racial theories in both Europe and the United States—generally taxonomic attempts at scientifically naturalizing the political histories of empire and slavery—shifted Anglo-Saxonism’s terms, emphasizing the old English virtues as racial rather than localized in a cultural history. Seen through the lenses of Darwinian evolutionary thought and, in the early twentieth century, Mendelian genetics, these virtues seemed indisputably heritable as well; thus the moral characteristics of a people could perpetuate themselves in a bloodline—or dissipate through racial admixture.”

        “Moreover, the tempting language of hierarchy and teleology entwined with Charles Darwin’s evolutionary thought—a language of higher and lower, of success and failure—permitted the development, on both sides of the Atlantic, of a pervasive, powerful rhetoric of racial fitness and ultimate domination. This rhetoric in turn lent easy support to doctrines of imperial necessity in England, of Manifest Destiny in the United States.” “The Anglo-Saxons, in the popular terms of racial determinism, were naturally vigorous adventurers and leaders whose expansion over the face of the earth was a simple matter of biological inevitability. Such historical thinking, buttressed by an increasing fashionableness of ‘Teutonic’ approaches to history in American universities, led by the 1880s to the vigorous apocalyptic language of the clergyman Josiah Strong, who wrote in his immensely popular Our Country (1885) of white Christendom’s coming crisis: ‘the final competition of races, for which the Anglo-Saxon is being schooled. . . . And can any one doubt that the result of this competition will be “survival of the fittest?.” Citing Darwin’s Descent of Man, Strong noted that the uncivilized non-Aryans of the world ‘are now disappearing before the all conquering Anglo-Saxons. . . . Whether the extinction of inferior races before the advancing Anglo-Saxon seems to the reader sad or otherwise, it certainly appears probable” (qtd. from Anglo-Saxonism at FREE online dictionary p. 215).

  5. Maghlawatan on May 16, 2018, 3:55 pm

    Ebro: “Sometimes it isn’t just as easy as pick a side. Sometimes the place that you live, or the thing that you love is just wrong. Straight up, and being evil. ”

    Reminded me of something Joe Sacco said about Gaza. “I find it very difficult to be objective when there is a clear case of a people being oppressed. I’m not sure what objective means in a situation like that. I would rather be honest about vwhat”s going on ”

    In a lot of Israeli discussion about the Holocaust people wonder why onlookers did nothing. Why do Israelis today do nothing ?

    • Stephen Shenfield on May 16, 2018, 8:50 pm

      Zionists say that onlookers did nothing to save Jews from the Holocaust, but as a generalization this is not true. Many people risked their own lives to hide Jews. In certain countries there was mass resistance to the Holocaust. In Denmark the resistance was led by the king himself, who wore the yellow star and urged his subjects to do likewise. The Resistance organized the evacuation of Danish Jews to Sweden. Another example is Bulgaria, where nationwide resistance compelled the pro-Nazi government to halt deportations. Resistance to the Holocaust was also strong in Belarus and Protestant regions of France. Zionists play down all such facts in order to inculcate indiscriminate fear and resentment of Gentiles as at best indifferent to Jewish suffering: the whole world is against us, we must rely solely on our own military might, etc.

      Nor do all Israelis today do nothing. I get frequent reports from Adam Keller of the protest actions undertaken by decent Israelis who are willing to risk getting beaten up by vigilantes. It seems to you that no Israelis are doing anything because these protests are not covered by the media. Even Mondoweiss is not covering them — I would like to know why.

      • annie on May 16, 2018, 11:45 pm

        stephen, phil is in jerusalem, have you been reading his updates?

      • Maghlawatan on May 17, 2018, 4:43 pm

        Stephen, as for the Holocaust, it was minor. The Danes were admirable but nobody saved the Jews of Poland. Gush Shalom are decent but nobody takes them seriously. Israel is wall to wall groupthink.

      • Jon66 on May 17, 2018, 6:20 pm

        “Zionists say that onlookers did nothing to save Jews from the Holocaust”

        Imagine what it would might look like if Zionists acknowledged that non-Jews risked their lives to help.

        Yad Vashem would have made such recognition a priority.
        “One of Yad Vashem’s principal duties is to convey the gratitude of the State of Israel and the Jewish people to Righteous Among the Nations who took great risks to save Jews during the Holocaust.”

        Israel would name streets after rescuers.

        Or imagine a big time Jewish Zionist Hollywood director making his only film about the Holocaust centered on a non-Jewish rescuer. And if a guy like that made such a film, there is no way that Zionist Hollywood could give it any awards.

        Just inconceivable.

      • echinococcus on May 18, 2018, 12:35 pm


        The problem with “internal opposition” by invaders, or offspring thereof, to Zionism in the Zionist entity is not that it’s not being reported. It is, and in fact the relatively little we hear of it is already out of proportion to its real reach.

        The problem is essentially the same as with symbolic anti-Nazi opposition within Nazi Germany; it’s futile. The energy would be better spent organizing resistance from abroad. This would also be morally the better solution for those “Jewish” opponents, as their continued presence on Palestinian soil only helps compound the war crime of civilian occupation (if invader offspring) or violates the boycott (if immigrants or visitors.)

  6. on May 16, 2018, 4:24 pm

    Soon it will not be taboo to criticize Israel or support the Palestinians cause.

    IMO, once people fully understand that (i) the Palestinians are only seeking basic human rights, (ii) Zionists are racists, and (iii) not all Jews are Zionists, change will happen in fast order.

  7. Keith on May 16, 2018, 7:21 pm

    MONDOWEISS EDITORS- “Celebrities are outraged over Israel’s killing of protesters in Gaza.”

    Yeah? How many? How many huge celebrity demonstrations? Brave celebrities? Courageous tweets? How pathetic that Mondoweiss takes such comfort in social media activity. How many US demonstrations did BDS or other “solidarity” groups organize? There has been some activity in Europe which is probably irrelevant in view of the power dynamics, but the US? A relevant quote from Aviva Chomsky.

    “Over the years I have come to see more and more of what Adolph Reed calls “posing as politics.” Rather than organizing for change, individuals seek to enact a statement about their own righteousness. They may boycott certain products, refuse to eat certain foods, or they may show up to marches or rallies whose only purpose is to demonstrate the moral superiority of the participants. White people may loudly claim that they recognize their privilege or declare themselves allies of people of color or other marginalized groups. People may declare their communities “no place for hate.” Or they may show up at counter-marches to “stand up” to white nationalists or neo-Nazis. All of these types of “activism” emphasize self-improvement or self-expression rather than seeking concrete change in society or policy. They are deeply, and deliberately, apolitical in the sense that they do not seek to address issues of power, resources, decision making, or how to bring about change.” (Aviva Chomsky)

    • annie on May 17, 2018, 12:01 am

      keith, there were protests here in the bay area, a rally in front of the israeli consulate in SF yesterday, tonight at ehud barak’s appearance, this weekend in the mission. i think all week. where are you? i think they are happening around the country.

  8. Qualtrough on May 16, 2018, 11:18 pm

    Super, super respect for these people, many of whom may be putting their careers at risk because of the nature of the industry they work in. Particularly for those whose acting careers are just getting established.

  9. iResistDe4iAm on May 17, 2018, 11:55 am

    Actor Morgan Freeman took aim at President Donald Trump:

    Note: Morgan J. Freeman is NOT the actor.

    From his Twitter page…

    Filmmaker, TV producer, husband, activist & father. Fierce opposer of Trump. Big fan of snacks. Not the actor!

  10. genesto on May 17, 2018, 12:42 pm

    Meanwhile, the silence of our dear Congress on this is deafening! Clearly, they are deeply afraid of having to take a stand on this latest Gaza massacre. On one hand, they don’t want to incur the wrath of the Israel lobby and jeopardize their political future. On the other, though, they would find themselves out on an island, vis a vis the sentiments of the world community and a fast-growing majority in the US, if they showed support for Israel at this time and on this issue.

    The evil of what Israel is doing against the peaceful protesters in Gaza cannot be denied. Those that try, Like Nikki Haley, come across as the pathetic dupes of the lobby they really are. Ergo, Congress’ silence.

  11. echinococcus on May 18, 2018, 1:09 am

    It will be hard to disprove that we can observe these wonderful episodes of change of heart thanks to the fact that Trump is president instead of Obama.

    The horror of the 2014 massacre under (/by) a Dim prez failed to elicit an even remotely comparable response. See, even Sanders is speaking out!

  12. Helena Cobban on May 21, 2018, 2:03 pm

    So MJ’ Rosenberg’s son done good.

  13. Tom Callaghan on May 22, 2018, 8:41 pm

    If Rachel Maddow was alive she’d be right over there in Gaza doing courageous reporting. As an icon of the Left, Israel wouldn’t dare hurt her. She’d expose the Israeli brutality for what it is.

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