For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Like many of you, I’ve received a fair share of alerts that Elvis Costello has joined the ranks of entertainers planning to boycott Israel until the boycott “movement” gives them the all clear. A number of these alarms have been accompanied by condemnations of Costello as a hack, a has-been and a hypocrite, coupled with calls to counter-boycott the singer and (if it can be done with MP3s) burn his recordings for good measure.
In truth, I have a slightly softer spot for Elvis Costello than I do for Carlos Santana, another rocker who has decided to dabble in moral consciousness at the expense of the Jewish state, if only because I saw E.C. in concert once (at Brandies as a matter of fact) and a friend one succeeded in impersonating the British singer to get into a sold-out comedy club. The fact that celebrity endorsements (even ones in favor of causes I support) have always seemed pretty vacuous and imbecilic also keeps the danger signal of Costello’s choice flashing yellow instead of red.
That said, if the last decade has taught us anything, it’s that BDS is pretty good at capitalizing on even small successes, at least in terms of keeping its militant project energized. So the recruitment of pop-stars as the latest anti-Israel bludgeon needs to be taken seriously. At the same time, placing this month’s BDS “triumph” in the context of how the whole boycott and divestment thing has been going over the last year or two might provide some guidance as to how to meet this latest challenge.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"