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As pressure rises on Robbie Williams and UNICEF over Israel gig, conflict of interest emerges between singer and NGO

Ben Whitaker on

Roger Waters has joined the chorus of voices calling on British pop-star Robbie Williams to cancel his May 2nd concert in Tel Aviv. Pressure is also falling on UNICEF as Williams is also one of the organization’s “goodwill ambassadors,” and currently the face of the ‘Children in Danger’ campaign, aiming “to protect children from violence, disease, hunger, and the chaos of war and disaster.” Williams has yet to respond to the campaign, but how about UNICEF? It turns out the organization might have something to gain from Williams’ concert as Tim Clark, vice president of UNICEF UK, is also Robbie Williams’s manager.

In mind-boggling contradiction, UNICEF Ambassador Robbie Williams books gig in Tel Aviv

Annie Robbins on

British mega pop star Robbie Williams, a UK Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) since 2001 , signed on last month to front a new campaign launched by UNICEF UK Children in Danger, which “aims to protect children from violence, disease, hunger and the chaos of war and disaster.” Less than a week later Williams announced on his website he’s booked a gig at Hayarkon Park in Tel Aviv on May 2, 2015, as part of his Let Me Entertain You Tour.

Brian Williams is justly outraged by Mormon bar on intermarriage

Philip Weiss on

Last night on NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams featured a portion of an interview with Abby Huntsman, daughter of former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, about her decision to leave the Mormon church because of her romance and later marriage to a non-Mormon. It’s at minute 12 in the video above. Huntsman related a painful interview […]

Palestinians are ‘trapped’ in Gaza in ‘lopsided conflict’, Brian Williams says

Philip Weiss on

The latest Israeli assault on Gaza is being covered in a new way in the United States mainstream. Slowly but surely, an alternative voice is trickling into the stream. Not much but a trickle, changing the picture of Palestinians in the American discourse. Exhibit A, Ayman Mohyeldin. The NBC reporter is in Gaza and had […]

Palestine solidarity on trial

Vashti Kenway on

On May 1st, 19 Melbourne activists will be put on trial for their political activity. In a precedent-setting case, these pro-Palestine activists will be fighting a variety of charges designed to criminalise dissent in Baillieu’s Victoria and intimidate supporters of Palestine in Australia.  On 1 July 2011, Victoria Police attacked a peaceful demonstration in Melbourne’s […]

Heathcote Williams: ‘An Old Man and a Young Man in Gaza’

Henry Norr on

On Saturday evenings KALW, the smaller and less corporate of San Francisco’s two public radio stations, airs a terrific music show called Tangents. The host, Dore Stein, puts together an amazing mélange of world and roots music, blues, jazz, and especially hybrids that combine several of these genres. But what really makes the show unique is “Gaza Corner,” a […]

The Anchor as Pastor: Couric, Gibson and Williams in Minneapolis

Philip Weiss on

Did you notice the frankly-religious component of the evening news broadcasts on Thursday night, when all three anchors were in Minneapolis? Brian Williams choked up as he spoke of the “expired souls” who were under water, then gave what we…

‘We will not be bullied into silence’: Over 350 scholars and Civil Rights movement veterans speak out in support of Palestinian rights and Angela Davis

Open Letter on

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, over 350 scholars of the Civil Rights and Black Freedom Movements, and veterans of these historic struggles, along with educators and human rights advocates, issued the following statement in support of Palestinian human rights, and in defense of, Angela Y. Davis, who was publicly dishonored three weeks ago by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute when it abruptly reversed its decision to recognize her with its annual award because of her stand on Palestinian rights.

Jewish students at Williams blast Hillel for booting LGBTQ group after it co-sponsored event with JVP

Mondoweiss Editors on

Jewish students from Williams College are condemning Hillel for ousting an LGBTQ student group that signed up to co-sponsor an event on LGBTQ refugees, along with Jewish Voice for Peace in March. Open Hillel, a campaign that seeks to reform Hillel’s policy against working with organization’s that mention Israel’s occupation, posted in an action alert, “When OSU Hillel expelled B’nai Keshet, they pulled staff advising, funding, and access to the Hillel building and student list-serve from the group. They also pulled a paid Hillel internship from one of their student leaders.”

Just 1 of 12 Westchester County legislators stands up against anti-BDS bill — Alfreda Williams

Priscilla Read, Donald Johnson and Robert Herbst on

Westchester County legislative committee passes a resolution describing BDS as a campaign to “malign the Jewish people,” by a 12-1 vote despite efforts of human rights activists. Sole holdout is Alfreda Williams. “It’s a lost cause, perhaps, but in my experience, most good causes begin as lost,” writes Priscilla Read.

Brian Williams suggests that Israeli attack on Iran will invite terrorism to London Olympics

Philip Weiss on

Brian Williams Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy Last night, boldly seeking to educate the American public on the error of making war on Iran, NBC Nightly News highlighted Brian Williams’s interview with David Cameron, the British prime minister, in which Cameron said Israeli should not attack. “I don’t […]

Welcome Annie Robbins as Writer at Large

Philip Weiss and Adam Horowitz on

Annie Robbins There have been lots of good changes around here in the last couple weeks, and here is another: Annie Robbins, who has long worked with us in a behind the scenes way as annie, has agreed to take on a more public role, as Writer at Large for Mondoweiss. Annie needs little introduction. […]

Of colonies, lobbies and metropoles

Philip Weiss on

“Past is Present: Settler Colonialism in Palestine,” the conference in London on March 5-6 noted here last Saturday, looks like the greatest concentration of anti-Zionist brainpower in the western world since, well, since a conference in Boston two years ago entitled “One State for Palestine/Israel: A Country for All Its Citizens” featuring several of the […]

William Blum of ‘Anti-Empire Report’ needs help

Theodore Sayeed on

William Blum, 85, Vietnam-era dissident, author, and relentless critic of US bombing campaigns, suffered a serious fall in his apartment more than 2 weeks ago, and his family is seeking contributions to help him pay for care and medical bills. Please go to his website.

Mearsheimer on dual loyalty and William Safire

Philip Weiss on

I misplaced my taperecorder after the MoveonAipac.org hoedown in D.C., I’m still looking for it but in the meantime I need to convey from my notes three things that John Mearsheimer said in his appearance at the conference. 1. Someone asked about the USS Liberty attack in 67 that killed 30-some Americans and was never […]

William Safire: Wars Made out of Words

David Bromwich on

“There were no thrills while he reigned, but neither were there any headaches. He had no ideas, and he was not a nuisance.” What Mencken said of Coolidge can be reversed in the case of Safire. There were plenty of thrills, and after the thrills, the field was littered with casualties. And he had tons […]

Harman backscratching deal is how lobbies work

Felson on

Congresswoman Jane Harman is a stalwart of the Israel lobby, and Ron Kampeas of JTA is working hard to try to show that she’s been smeared by the CQ report that she made a deal in 2005 with a “suspected…

The great book robbery

Mondoweiss Editors on

June 1948, Israeli soldiers advance in an affluent Arab neighborhood, now almost deserted, in western Jerusalem. The soldiers are followed by several librarians from the national library. Sporadic gunfire is heard. The men cling against the walls as they arrive in a street with big wealthy houses, their occupants left in haste. Breaking into house […]

The education of William Scranton

Philip Weiss on

Recently I did a post on the education of Samantha Power. How she transformed herself from a critic of Israeli human rights abuses to a stalwart supporter of Israel. And now she’s ambassador to the U.N. It’s an old story. William Scranton, moderate Republican former governor of Pennsylvania and presidential candidate, is dead at 96. […]

Israel lobbied Serbians in Bosnia to block Palestinians at Security Council

Philip Weiss on

You’ve surely heard the news that Palestinian hopes of gaining nine votes for statehood in the Security Council were dealt a blow on Monday when Bosnia indicated that it would abstain. And without nine votes, Palestine won’t trigger the U.S. veto, which is an achievement, because it exposes the Israel lobby and marginalizes the U.S. […]

William Blum: the dissident and the style

Theodore Sayeed on

Since the end of World War 2, the United States has attempted to overthrow more than 50 foreign governments, most of them democratically-elected. And other sharp observations from a great wit of the left, William Blum.