Lorde's Tel Aviv gig controversy: Jewish Council says it tried to stop 'bigot' ad

The New Zealand Jewish Council says it tried to prevent a full-page ad labelling Lorde a "bigot" from being printed in the Washington Post.

The ad, paid for by the World Values Network and published in the December 31 issue of The Washington Post, criticised the Kiwi pop star's decision to cancel a planned concert in Tel Aviv later this year.

New Zealand was also targeted in the ad, published in the paper's Sunday edition which has a circulation of around 800,000. 

The advert, placed by the World Values Network.
The advert, placed by the World Values Network. Photo credit: Twitter/RabbiShmuley

Jewish Council spokesperson Juliet Moses said "bullying" the 21-year-old won't promote conversations or co-existence between the two sides, which have been at odds for decades.

"She has made that decision now, and therefore there is nothing to be gained by essentially bullying her over it - which is what we were accusing the people who wanted her to cancel her concert [of doing]," she told Newshub.

"We don't think it is going to help advance a dialogue or achieve peace in any way whatsoever. It's just inflammatory and will just harden attitudes on both sides of the debate."

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, who created the advert, said Ms Moses was "respectfully wrong".

"There should be no tolerance for intolerance. No safe sanctuary for anti-Jewish bigotry," he wrote on Twitter.

"Lorde chose to publicly join a movement that seeks economic destruction of he Jewish State."

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach. Photo credit: Reuters

Lorde cancelled the gig about a week after announcing it, saying although she did "a lot of reading and sought a lot of opinions before deciding to book a show in Tel Aviv" on this occasion she "didn't make the right call".

While Ms Moses said boycotting Israel won't solve anything either, the World Values Network's strategy is flawed.

"It's based on the idea that segregation is somehow going to lead to peace. Ideally, the New Zealand Jewish Council supports the two parties sitting down to negotiation and hopefully achieving a two-state solution."

The ad also accuses the 'Royals' singer and New Zealand of supporting Syria.

"Lorde joined a global anti-Semitic boycott of Israel but will perform in Russia, despite Putin's support for Assad's genocide in Syria," the advert reads.

"Last December, New Zealand sponsored a UN resolution which both condemned Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and even denied Jewish claims to the Western Wall, the area of Judaism's holiest site.

"Syria was, at the time, cluster-bombing Aleppo and murdering hundreds of innocent Arab children."

The ad said New Zealand's "growing prejudice against the Jewish State seems to be trickling down to its youth", and suggested she be more like Radiohead, Sir Paul McCartney, Madonna and Lady Gaga, who have all performed in the country.


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