An open letter to a pianist Hiromi Uehara: Please cancel the concert in Israel

Hiromi Uehara, a Japanese Jazz pianist is scheduled to perform in Tel Aviv on 16th of November, while Israeli attack on Palestinian people are escalating. We, as a coalition of civil society, have sent email to require her to cancel the concert.

Below is the English translation of the message (in Japanese) sent to Hiromi Uehara via email:

Dear Ms. Hiromi Uehara

Please cancel the concert in Tel Aviv, in the Apartheid state

We are a coalition of civil society concerned with Israeli war crime and serious human-rights abuse on Palestinians that is working locally for ending such an injustice.

The violence committed by Israeli army is being intensified day by day recently: more than 50 Palestinians were killed only in October. We are strongly concerned that your concert in Israel would contribute to amplify the Israeli propaganda of only "cultural, democratic and normal" state in the Middle East and make its aspect of the apartheid policy invisible.

You might have read an open letter by Roger Waters to Bon Jovi to call cancellation of the gig in Israel. He says: “You stand shoulder to shoulder/ With the settler who burned the baby/ With the bulldozer driver who crushed Rachel Corrie/ With the soldier who shot the soccer player’s feet to bits/ With the sailor who shelled the boys on the beach/ With the sniper who killed the kid in the green shirt/ And the one who emptied his clip into the 13-year-old girl/ And the Minister of Justice who called for genocide”

And he continues: “On the side of justice/ With the pilot who refused to bomb refugee camps/ With the teenager who chose eight prison terms over army service/ With the prisoner who fasted for 266 days until freedom/ With the doctor banned from entry for saving lives/ With the farmer who was cut down marching to the wall/ With the legless child growing up in the rubble/ And the 550 others who won’t grow up at all/ Because of the missiles and tank shells and bullets we sent”

Roger concludes: “To stand by silent and indifferent is the greatest crime of all.” You, living in the US, might come up with the words that Martin Luther King Jr. left: The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.

Here is a link to the letter by Roger. You can jump from the page to the articles about the sailor, the sniper, the pilot and the doctor that are mentioned in the letter.

We especially recommend you to read the article on the incident that the Israeli forces shot two Palestinian soccer players repeatedly into their legs and feet - 2 bullets into Adam and 10 bullets into Jawhar. Don’t you think that the soldiers shot deliberately breaking their legs and feet to force them to grieve over the loss of their lives as soccer players?

Ms. Hiromi Uehara, please imagine that you are shot on your fingers - due to your career as a pianist. Please think of the Palestinians’ grief. And, please be determined not to perform in Israel until it abandons the policy of apartheid.

23rd of Oct, 2015

  • Artists against Occupation
  • Feminism and Lesbian Art working group
  • Palestine Forum Japan
  • Palestine-Sendai Friendship Group
  • Support Organization for Ahli Arab Hospital
  • Stop SodaStream Japan