Israel/Palestine

Culture Wars

After the ridiculous calls for cultural boycotts from the likes of Iain Banks and others, and the constant harassment of musicians seeking to play music in Israel, isn’t this the way forward? Boney M in Ramallah?

In recent months the West Bank has turned into one giant performance and culture center. One of the major attractions was the Palestine International Festival of Dance and Music. Tens of thousands of Palestinians flocked to watch exciting performances by various groups and artists.

Ramallah Mayor Janet Mikhail invited residents to join in the street dancing as part of the Ramallah Festival of Contemporary Dance. The city also hosted the Jerusalem Festival and the International Film Festival.

Even Jenin, the intifada’s “suicide bombers capital” got its fair share of cultural events.

The Palestinian Authority is calling the recent cultural wave “resistance through culture” with many of the events held under the banner “Palestine fights and challenges the blockade.”
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The summer’s climax was undoubtedly the Boney M concert in Ramallah to a crowd of thousands of enthusiastic fans. Heavily covered by world media, the concert symbolized a new era for the Palestinian Authority.

New prosperity also brought with it some controversies. More and more young Palestinians are choosing the party life in night clubs and discothèques over lounging in cafés and smoking hookahs.

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