What Was The Real Reason?
In last week’s JN article, “Security Squeeze,” it was stated that Adat Shalom has canceled the Noa concert because of security threats it had received. In that same article, a spokesman for Adat Shalom said that “there was nothing on the level of a bomb threat and no use of the word ‘violent,’ but the synagogue officers were concerned.”
The spokesman also said they were concerned about demonstrations or protests. Apparently, any Federation or Adat Shalom event will be canceled if a protest or demonstration is threatened — who knew there was such fragility in a free society?
On the other hand, I believe the reason given was a cover-up for the sponsors being ignorant of the anti-Israel and anti-IDF activities of the singer, Achinoam Nini (known as Noa).
Nini, contrary to her protests about not supporting BDS, has been in the BDS movement for many years through her involvement with organizations that support BDS, like B’tselem, a member organization of Fédération Internationale des Droits de l’Homme (FIDH), a Paris-based association of international NGOs promulgating BDS campaigns worldwide.
Nini has also praised Abbas while condemning Netanyahu. In an interview with ANSA, an Italian press agency, she said: “I met Abu Mazen [Abbas] in Ramallah. I believe that the Palestinian leader really wants peace with Israel, but unfortunately I can’t say the same about my prime minister.”
In addition, on her Facebook page, Nini wrote, “Trump is a modern-day Hitler, and who supports him? Bibi! Surprised? No!! Bibi is not only the self-proclaimed King of the Jews, he is also just as racist, narcisitic, paranoid and vulgar as Trump.”
She proceeded to castigate and condemn Jews who voted for Trump by continuing with, “Is there any Jew in America that still supports Trump?? I am sure the answer is yes. Have you no shame?? Are not many of your relatives of the 6 million killed under the same flag of racism, lies, incitement and blind hatred? Do you not see how easily these horrible monsters can turn against you and devour you? Against us, every one of us?”
The singer has her political views and certainly she has a right to express them. But, what is particularly egregious to those of us who heartily support Israel in its fight against terrorists is that Achinoam Nini took part in an “alternative” Remembrance Day ceremony that included honoring the Arab terrorist Ziad Jilani. Jilani was shot dead after he rammed into a group of border policemen with his car, wounding several of them. His widow was an honored speaker at that “alternative” Remembrance Day ceremony. That had to be exceedingly hurtful to the many Israeli victims of Arab terrorists.
If Adat Shalom and the Federation were aware of Nini’s activities but believed in presenting alternative views regardless of the firestorm that creates, then they should have been courageous enough to have the event and deal with the warranted criticism.
If the sponsors were ignorant of the singer’s activities until it was revealed to them, then they should have been honest and admit that it was the reason for canceling the event and then deal with the resulting humiliation. Unfortunately, the sponsors did neither.
Instead, the sponsors seem to have taken the cowardly way out by blaming the cancellation on grossly exaggerated or fabricated security threats, thereby falsely intimating that the critics were security threats. While violent protests or threats of such violence do raise real security concerns, peaceful protests and demonstrations that don’t shut down free speech are indispensable to a free society and protected by our Constitution.
Irving Ginsberg, Ph.D., lives in Farmington Hills.
Editor’s note: The Jewish News was a sponsor of the event.