German public broadcast corporation Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) recently announced that it will not sponsor former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters’ upcoming concert at Cologne, Germany’s Lanxess Arena on June 11th, 2018. WDR pulled its sponsorship of the Roger Waters concert following a public petition led by a German Jewish woman, Malca Goldstein-Wolf, that urged the local public broadcast network to “not to grant support with public money for…an antisemite” received 1,500 signatures.
Before 2013, the Anti-Defamation League, an organization that fights against antisemitism in the United States, defended Waters, a leading figure in the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel, against accusations of anti-semitism. However, after the former Pink Floyd frontman, in an interview, compared Israel to Nazi Germany, the Anti-Defamation League changed its stance, stating that Waters’ “comments about Jews and Israel have gotten progressively worse over time. It started with anti-Israel invective, and has now morphed into conspiratorial anti-Semitism.”
Tom Burhow, head of WDR took to social media to explain the broadcast company’s sponsorship pull, noting, “I tell you, since it’s important to me that you should know how important your feelings are to me: sponsorship of the concert is cancelled. Please regard my clear decision as a personal message of trustworthiness and understanding.”
[H/T JTA; Photo: Chad Anderson]