Lana Del Rey slammed for ignoring BDS calls to not play in Israel

In tweet responding to fan, singer said she wanted to ‘shift the energetic vibration of a location for the higher good’.

Lana Del Rey
Del Rey has so far refused to heed calls to cancel her show in Israel [Jim Ross/AP Photo] [Daylife]

Singer Lana Del Rey is facing criticism for ignoring calls to cancel a planned performance in Tel Aviv next month, suggesting her performance there may “shift the energetic vibration” of the region.

The singer’s planned appearance at the three-day Meteor Festival in September has drawn criticism from fans, who argued her presence will be used to legitimise Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.

In a statement published on her Twitter account late on Sunday, Del Rey said: “I understand many of [you] are upset that we’re going to Tel Aviv for the Meteor Festival.

“I understand your concern I really … do. What I can tell you is I believe music is universal and should be used to bring us together.”

Israel is subject to calls for a cultural boycott by the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, and several entertainers have cancelled appearances in the country in response.

In January, the singer Lorde pulled out of a planned concert in Israel, drawing condemnation from Israel officials, but praise from Palestinian activists.

One fan reacted to Del Rey’s statement, cautioning her that the performance would be “used as propaganda to improve the image of Israel abroad”.

‘Loving energy’

Del Rey responded, arguing that her “loving energy can help shift the energetic vibration of a location for the higher good”.

That comment earned the singer a hail of criticism.

Palestinian activist, Yousef Munayyer, wrote that ignoring calls to boycott the festival was in itself a political move.

“When a civil society movement of oppressed people asks you not to play in the state that oppresses them and uses cultural performance to whitewash their image, rejecting their request *IS* a political statement and it is not one history will judge kindly,” he wrote on Twitter.

Others were less forgiving in their critique of Del Rey’s comments.

One user named Jack wrote: “In news that should surprise no one, lana del rey thinks her ‘loving energy’ is going to ‘shift the energetic vibration of a location for the higher good’ in israel. definitely the most creative excuse I’ve seen for playing in an apartheid settler state.”

The BDS movement started in 2005, after a call issued by Palestinian civil society groups for “people of conscience” around the world to help end Israel’s abuses against Palestinians, by cutting off cultural, academic, and economic ties with the state.

With the advent of social media in recent years, the movement has gained traction and popularity among supporters of the Palestinian cause.

Its successes have been enough to earn the ire of senior Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has sought to ban organisations that promote BDS in Israel.

Source: Al Jazeera