ZOA Critical of Stevie Wonder For Pulling Out of a IDF Concert in Los Angeles
The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has criticized singer Stevie Wonder for pulling out of a scheduled performance for the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) December 6 gala in Los Angeles due to what FIDF said was “a recommendation from the United Nations to withdraw.”
Prior to Wonder’s decision to cancel his performance, Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activists posted a petition on Change.org, urging Wonder to back out. Numerous anti-Israel organizations applied immense pressure on Wonder to cancel his scheduled performance, distributing a petition with anti-Israel propaganda and demanding that he cancel the show.
The National Director and CEO of the FIDF, Major-General (Res.) Yitzhak (Jerry) Gershon said, “We regret the fact that Stevie Wonder has decided to cancel his performance at an important community event of the FIDF, an American organization supporting the educational, cultural, and wellbeing needs of Israel’s soldiers, their families, and the families of fallen soldiers … FIDF is a non-political organization that provides much-needed humanitarian support regardless of religion, political affiliation, or military activity.”
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “We deeply regret and are critical of the fact that Stevie Wonder has bowed to pressure and cancelled his performance at the FIDF gala.
“The intention of those who pressured Stevie Wonder into withdrawing from this event was to cause an impression to form that the IDF, being the army of Israel, is ipso facto an inappropriate organization on whose behalf an artist should appear. It suggests that Israel is in its essence anti-peace.
“This is simply an avenue for delegitimizing Israel and its military, which protects and preserves the sovereign Jewish state of Israel on a daily basis. It is an attempt to delegitimize the rightful duty of the IDF to defend the country by suggesting that the IDF is a monstrous killer with which no right-thinking artist should be associated.
“We are also critical of the fact that Mr. Wonder canceled his performance when it was he who once said that he would not perform in Arizona because the state had not instituted a Martin Luther King celebration. Is it not incongruous that Mr. Wonder refuses to perform where African-Americans were in his view insufficiently respected, but he won’t perform for the FIDF when all the IDF has done is defended Israel?
“We call upon Mr. Wonder to rescind the cancellation of his performance, to do the morally correct thing and show solidarity with Israel by performing at the FIDF gala.”
The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) is the oldest and one of the largest pro-Israel organizations in the US, whose members include Irving Moskowitz,
Cherna Moskowitz, Ronn Torossian and others.
Filed Under: Entertainment
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