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Open letter to Bertelsmann boss about Roger Waters

By November 14, 2023Article

You can read the original article here.

15 Jewish organizations join forces


July 19, 2023 – 11:49 a.m

Los Angeles/Frankfurt – Pink Floyd founder and Israel hater Roger Waters (79) is heavily criticized for his views and his appearances (Nazi outfits, pig-shaped balloons with a Star of David). Politicians wanted to prevent his concerts in Germany – in vain .

Now 15 Jewish organizations have come together and written a joint letter to Thomas Rabe, chairman and CEO of Bertelsmann (Waters’ record company BMG). They ask that the business relationship with Roger Waters be reconsidered.

The open letter is a response to Roger Waters’ recent concerts in Germany, where he appeared in a Nazi-like uniform and compared a Palestinian-American journalist to Anne Frank.

The sender is the non-profit organization “Creative Community For Peace” (CCFP), which is joined by the following organizations: World Jewish Congress, Central Council of Jews in Germany, Simon Wiesenthal Center, European Jewish Congress, American Jewish Committee, Anti-Defamation League, Council for Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs, B’nai B’rith International, Center for Israel and Jewish Affairs Canada, Community Security Trust, Conference of European Rabbis, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Conseil Représentatif des Institutions juives de France, South African Jewish committee of representatives.

The open letter in full:

“Dear Mr. Rabe,

As you may have seen, BMG client Roger Waters recently caused an uproar in Germany when he donned a Nazi-like uniform and Shireen Abu Akleh – a Palestinian-American journalist who tragically lost her life while working in a war zone – compared to Anne Frank, a young girl who was murdered by the Nazis simply because she was Jewish.

In response to this latest incident, the EU Commission’s Coordinator for Combating Anti-Semitism and Promoting Jewish Life and the United States Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating Anti-Semitism loudly condemned Mr. Waters.

The US State Department also stated that Waters’ recent concert “contained images that were deeply offensive to Jewish people and downplayed the Holocaust.” The State Department added: “The artist in question has a long track record of using anti-Semitic language to denigrate Jewish people.” Unfortunately, the State Department is 100% correct, as this is just the latest in a long list of disturbing anti-Semitic incidents from Mr. Waters.

In the past he has described British Labor leader Keir Starmer being controlled by Jewish organizations, he has released pig-shaped balloons with the Star of David at his concerts, he has falsely blamed Israel for the death of George Floyd and he has publicly called for the destruction of the State of Israel. All of this came at a time when anti-Semitic incidents are increasing at an alarming rate worldwide.

We believe that artists have a unique and important responsibility to speak out against bigotry, given their enormous influence in today’s world. Mr. Waters has repeatedly shown that he is determined to do the opposite – and would instead use his voice, his platform and his public microphone to fan the flames of hate.

Given Bertelsmann’s unique history – particularly its actions during World War II – we find it concerning that the company would continue to benefit from this relationship, especially when you have recently demonstrated that anti-Semitism should have no place on your list.

We respectfully ask you to reconsider BMG’s professional relationship with Roger Waters and look forward to your response.”

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