Roger Waters, the bassist and co-founder of legendary progressive rock group Pink Floyd, told a British newspaper over the weekend that musicians are afraid of denouncing Israel over its policies as they relate to the Palestinians because they see the backlash that he has absorbed over his support for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
In an interview with the British newspaper Independent, Waters said that since he declared his support for BDS, he has been accused of being “a Nazi” and “an anti-Semite” – charges that he says could not be further from the truth.
“The only response to BDS is that it is anti-Semitic,” Waters told the newspaper. “I know this because I have been accused of being a Nazi and an anti-Semite for the past 10 years."
“My industry has been particularly recalcitrant in even raising a voice [against Israel]. There’s me and Elvis Costello, Brian Eno, Manic Street Preachers, one or two others, but there’s nobody in the United States where I live. I’ve talked to a lot of them, and they are scared s***less."
“If they say something in public they will no longer have a career. They will be destroyed. I’m hoping to encourage some of them to stop being frightened and to stand up and be counted, because we need them. We need them desperately in this conversation in the same way we needed musicians to join protesters over Vietnam.”