Due to his anti-Israel and antisemitic remarks and his pro-Putin statements, there is a debate in several German cities about the cancellation of Roger Waters’ concerts.
Ahead of the tour of former Pink Floyd singer Roger Waters, there has been a lively debate in several German cities about whether to hold his concerts after all. In recent months, Roger Waters has stepped up his already strong anti-Israel and even antisemitic statements. He has caused a particular scandal with his openly pro-Putin and anti-Ukrainian claims.
It seems that Frankfurt am Main will be the first to cancel Waters’ concert. First, the Jewish community, then a broad civil coalition and finally, the City of Frankfurt and the State of Hesse have also taken a stand against the May 28 event.
Interestingly, the protest is not only about Waters’ notorious anti-Israel rants and activism in support of the BDS movement (according to reports, antisemitic narratives are „central to the artist’s concerts”) but also the venue: civilians want to know how Waters can be performing at Festhalle.
The Festhalle, a venue for rock concerts for decades, is the historic site of violent anti-Jewish incidents during the November 1938 pogroms. More than 3,000 Jews were deported from here by a nearby railway station to the Dachau and Buchenwald concentration camps.
According to Frankfurt-based organisations, the spring „This Is Not A Drill” tour is „specifically designed to showcase Waters’ political agenda” and allegedly intended to identify Waters’ music with his hatred of Israel and boycott of the Jewish state.
In Munich and Cologne, the concerts are still expected to go ahead, and in Berlin, there is no chance of cancelling the two shows as the Mercedes Benz Arena is a privately owned venue. However, the Frankfurt Fair, which runs the Festhalle, is 40 per cent owned by the State of Hesse and 60 per cent by the city of Frankfurt, so they have the right to instruct the hall to cancel the contract.
For many years, Waters has been expressing his antisemitic views in increasingly extreme tones. At one concert, he was seen releasing pig-shaped balloons bearing the Star of David. At another, he tried to urge prominent rock musicians not to perform in Israel. A few years ago, at a pro-Palestinian British campaign on the abolition of Israel, he sang, „We’ll take back the land, from the Jordan River to the sea.”
Original article in Hungarian: TEV.hu