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自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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Girl on Fire

 


ホーキング博士がイスラエルでの国際会議をボイコットしたことは日本でもニュースになりましたが、歌手のアリシアキーズは来月4日のアメリカ独立記念日にあたる日にイスラエルでコンサートを開催するようです。これに関して、作家のアリスウォーカーが取りやめるようにオープンレターを出しているというのです。

今日のウォールストリートジャーナルのOpEdでこの騒動を初めて知りました。この論考を書かれた方はJewish Federationに所属していることもあり、オープンレターを批判する立場で書かれています。

OPINION
June 9, 2013, 6:55 p.m. ET
Alicia Keys, Israel and Civil Rights
The analogy between African-Americans in the era of segregation and Palestinians today is a false one.
By RICHARD FRIEDMAN
Birmingham, Ala.

Alice Walker, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author, has lately garnered more attention for her unhinged political views than for her writing. She has compared Fidel Castro to the Dalai Lama. She refused to allow her book "The Color Purple" to be translated into Hebrew. But perhaps nothing was more off-base—at least morally speaking—than the open letter Ms. Walker wrote in late May to singer-songwriter Alicia Keys. Ms. Walker, writing at the website of the U.S. Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, urged Ms. Keys to cancel a July 4 performance in Israel.

この作者はアリスウォーカーが"You were not born when we, your elders who love you, boycotted institutions in the U.S. South to end an American apartheid less lethal than Israel's against the Palestinian people."と書いていることに対して2つの点をあげて批判しています。

一つ目はアメリカの公民権運動は非暴力主義だったが、パレスチナ人は武力行使を辞さないではないかという点です。

What characterized the civil-rights movement was its strict adherence to the philosophy of nonviolence. Even when attacked with fire hoses and police dogs, civil-rights demonstrators courageously refused to retaliate.

The Palestinian leadership, by contrast, for decades has used violence whenever missile attacks or suicide bombers suit its aims. It is Israel that has shown an inclination to absorb punishment, though the country's tolerance stretches only so far before it responds militarily to attacks.

そしてもう一つ目は、キング牧師をはじめとする公民権運動のリーダーたちはイスラエル建国を支持していたという点です。

It also wouldn't hurt to remind people like Ms. Walker that no less a civil-rights leader than Martin Luther King Jr. was a fierce supporter of Israel. Days before his assassination in 1968, he said that "Israel is one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy."

Bayard Rustin, who organized the March on Washington in 1963, also believed in Israel's cause. In the late 1960s, when some black activists began denouncing Zionism and Jews generally, Rustin cautioned against joining "in history's oldest and most shameful witch hunt, anti-Semitism."

そもそものアリスウォーカーの公開書簡はどういったものか見てみます。

Open letter from Alice Walker to Alicia Keys

Dear Alicia Keys,
I have learned today that you are due to perform in Israel very soon. We have never met, though I believe we are mutually respectful of each other’s path and work. It would grieve me to know you are putting yourself in danger (soul danger) by performing in an apartheid country that is being boycotted by many global conscious artists. You were not born when we, your elders who love you, boycotted institutions in the US South to end an American apartheid less lethal than Israel’s against the Palestinian people. Google Montgomery Bus Boycott, if you don’t know about this civil rights history already. We changed our country fundamentally, and the various boycotts of Israeli institutions and products will do the same there. It is our only nonviolent option and, as we learned from our own struggle in America, nonviolence is the only path to a peaceful future.

(中略)

This is actually a wonderful opportunity for you to learn about something sorrowful, and amazing: that our government (Obama in particular) supports a system that is cruel, unjust, and unbelievably evil. You can spend months, and years, as I have, pondering this situation. Layer upon layer of lies, misinformation, fear, cowardice and complicity. Greed. It is a vast eye-opener into the causes of much of the affliction in our suffering world.

I have kept you in my awareness as someone of conscience and caring, especially about the children of the world. Please, if you can manage it, go to visit the children in Gaza, and sing to them of our mutual love of all children, and of their right not to be harmed simply because they exist.
With love, younger sister, beloved daughter and friend,

Alice Walker

今週号のTIMEでシリアの内戦の図解記事があったのですが、そこのWhat are U.S. priorities?ではProtecting Israel Chaos in Syria may pose new security risks for the U.S.’s main regional ally, spurring more decisive action on Washington’s part.とありました。

昨年の大統領選選挙では、アリシアキーズはオバマ大統領支持で選挙活動を手伝っていましたから、米国とイスラエルの政治関係を考えるとコンサートをとりやめることはほとんどないことは想像できます。この論考でも触れていたニューヨークタイムズの記事でイスラエル訪問を楽しみにしているとキーズは語っています。I look forward to my first visit to Israel.というおなじみの表現が使われていますね。

この記事ではボイコットに賛同したアーティストとコンサートを開いたアーティストも紹介していたのでその部分も合わせてみていきます。

May 31, 2013, 12:37 pm
Despite Protests, Alicia Keys Says She Will Perform in Tel Aviv
By DAVE ITZKOFF

In recent years, musicians like Elvis Costello, Gil Scott-Heron and the Pixies have withdrawn from scheduled events in Israel after pressure from pro-Palestinian groups, while other acts, including Elton John and Rihanna, have gone ahead with shows that have been protested. The scientist Stephen W. Hawking withdrew from an academic conference in Jerusalem in May, citing “advice from Palestinian academics that he should respect the boycott.”

In a statement to The New York Times, Ms. Keys said on Friday: “I look forward to my first visit to Israel. Music is a universal language that is meant to unify audiences in peace and love, and that is the spirit of our show.”

ペルシア語で歌ったイスラエル人歌手のリタさんがMusic is a universal language that is meant to unify audiences in peace and love.という台詞をいうと重みがでますが、米国のポップ歌手がこのようなことを言っても強者の論理と受け止められても仕方がない部分もあるかもしれません。
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