Despite efforts of the UK Guardian, the boycotters and the BDS lobby to claim that they disrupted the Israeli group, Habima, Shakespeare performance at the Globe last night, the reality was very different and their attempts to disrupt failed miserably.
Habimah were delighted by the warmth of their welcome from the community and Christian groups and although they won't admit it the Palestinian Solidarit Campaign, (PSC), the Boycott Israel Network and Jews for Justice for the Palestinians must be really disappointed.
Their main achievement was that they ensured two sellout performances for Habima, something they and the Globe can't fail to be pleased about. Hopefully, despite the extra work this provided for the Globe, it is hoped the outcome empowers them to know that inviting Israel performers gains more support than opposition, and they will invite Habima back again.
For once, there was a tremendous communal effort, together with Anglican Friends of Israel, Christian Friends of Israel and individual Christians who turned up as they always do to stand up for Israel, to counter the attempts of the boycotters, who first tried to get the Habimah invitation cancelled, supported by some ill-informed fellow artists, and then to cause effective disruption during their performances.
The Globe are to be congratulated for standing firm and putting in place all the necessary security to contain any disruptions. There is the added bonus of Habimah getting glowing reviews for their performance.
The comment in the article in the Guardian from Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi, co-ordinator with the Boycott Israel Network is ludicrous. Israelis and Israeli Arabs performing in the UK are not whitewashing anything. They are using their talents to promote peace and harmonious co-existence. Just what do the boycotters think they achieved for the Palestinians last night. They just made a lot more people aware of the futility and aggression of the BDS campaign and, perhaps, did Israel a great favour.
Hopefully one outcome will be that more Israeli groups will be invited to the UK which would be the best outcome of all.
Please do not allow the false impression that the disrupters succeeded to gain credence.
This was a real blow to the BDS movement and a great example of cross community cooperation to get the strategy right with the cooperation of the Globe management It has been a boost for those of us who were starting to be wary of having major Israeli events and productions because of the anti activity they generated but this has shown what can be done and the experience of all working together has been a great one and certainly the way forward to greater success.
A strong recommendation – contact or email the Globe to thank them for the way they handled things last night or Tweet @theGlobe and @habima
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