Zdob si Zdub: Don’t Play Apartheid Israel

Republished from Refrain Playing Israel:

Lately some musical artists have voiced that they had not heard of the cultural boycott of Israel, or they would have never scheduled to play in Israel.  Tuba Skinny, of New Orleans was due to play for the Israeli Red Sea Jazz Festival, and just days before, they cancelled [2] after being informed of the boycott by humanitarians.  Denise Jannah and Ramon Valle (of the Netherlands) became aware of the the boycott two days prior to their three scheduled concerts in Israel, they played in Israel anyway.  Denise’s experience in Israel, and correspondence with BDS volunteers, evidently created in her great regret that she had played for the apartheid regime, and she has written a letter stating she now supports BDS, where she states:

Please let me start by telling you this: of a cultural BDS boycott Ramon and I had NO knowledge, none at all. This is where the problem started, for had I known I would have done things differently: the reasons for this boycott are valid.[1]

Vintage punker Jello Biafara and advocate of the (USA) Green Party was also scheduled to play Israel, he also cancelled his performance.  He was also unaware that his actions would be interpretated as showing support for Israeli apartheid.  He thought he would be letting his Israeli fans down if he cancelled, and that his Israeli fans were all anti-zionist and against apartheid.  He cancelled after Punks Against Apatheid [3] launched an extensive education campaign making him more aware of the PACBI’s call for a cultural boycott of Israel. [4]

Now Moldavian punkers Zdob si Zdub have announced on their “gigs” page that they will be in Tel Aviv at the Barby on 5 November. [5]


(Zdob ÅŸi Zdub before the Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in Dí¼sseldorf.)

The chances are high that when they contracted to play in Israel, they were not informed of the boycott.  Usually, the only way bands can often be contacted are through their booking agents or management. Punk bands are noted for making stands against government oppression.  Punk bands are not known for breeching boycotts or crossing picket lines that exist for causes like human rights and justice.  It can only be assumed that these punkers from Moldavia are not aware of the boycott because they have not been contacted.  The BDS movement has not taken hold in Modavia or Russia, and apparently it needs much wider exposure in the Netherlands and the USA.

As of this publishing, the contacts we have for these Moldavian punkers, who participated in the Eurovision Song 2011 Contest in Dusseldorf (and placed 12th) are:

on Facebook see http://www.facebook.com/zdobsizdub?sk=wall

myspace comments page for Zdob si Zdub

on twitter @zdobsizdub (tweet to them about the boycott, ask them to cancel their 5 Nov concert in Israel)

emails for the band booking/management:

arina@cuibul.com <arina@cuibul.com>

concert@zdob-si-zdub.com <concert@zdob-si-zdub.com>

Please participate in letting this band know what they are probably unaware of, that there is a cultural boycott on now of Israel.  They they are being asked to respect this global call.

Zdob si Zdub, performing in Israel is a clear violation of support for human rights and justice.  Punk music and apartheid don’t belong together.


[1] See Jazz artist Denise Jannah’s full letter here http://www.kadaitcha.com/2011/09/18/denise-jannah-and-ramon-valles-now-support-bds/

[2] See letter from tuba Skinny on their cancellation here http://electronicintifada.net/blog/adri-nieuwhof/tuba-skinny-speaks-out-cancellation-show-red-sea-festival

[3] See http://punksagainstapartheid.com/ and http://punksagainstapartheid.com/2011/07/its-bigger-than-jello/

[4] See http://www.pacbi.org/etemplate.php?id=869

[5] See http://www.zdob-si-zdub.com/eng/concerts/index.html


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