Talib Kweli – Solidarity with those who live it is a stronger statement

Talib KweliAfter investigating the Palestinian-led call to boycott, divest and sanction Israel, US rapper artist Talib Kweli announced on twitter that he would respect BDS. Kweli was supposed to appear in an international hip-hop, funk and groove festival planned for mid-August at Hadera.

“As much as I want to play Israel, I have decided not to in solidarity with Palestinians who will not have access to my show. After days of discussions with many, I’ve decided to try & visit Israel & Palestine with those who fight to end the state of apartheid rather than use my art to force the issue on those who would rather not deal with it.”


Further, Kweli added:

“at the end of the day, whether I agree with boycott or not, it is my duty to respect it as a tactic. Hopefully it works…”


Kweli, who is well-known for the political content of his work, proved unresponsive to the usual calls from Israel’s propagandists that ‘music isn’t political’ and that ‘music is above politics’.


Other Israeli hasbara agents wondered why Talib would support the Palestinian-led boycott but not boycott Russia or the US.


Talib identified three main reasons why he decided to support BDS:

(1) Discussions with members of DAM, Palestinian Israeli rap group.


(2) ‘the responses on twitter from BDS supporters were compassionate, measured, informed an respectful for the most part’

(3) ‘reading abt Paul Simon recording Graceland in SA in defiance of boycott & how he thought Mandela was a terrorist back then…’

Ultimately, Kweli decided “being in solidarity with those who live it would be a stronger statement…


Talib Kweli’s thoughtful, principled solidarity with Palestinians and their call for boycott of Israel is deeply appreciated, particularly at this time when Israel is engaged in a racist rampage of collective punishment against Palestinians, incited by Israeli leaders.


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