Israel at Eurovision, How Times Have Changed

Last night, Israel’s Eurovision contestant Imri Ziv (along with his impressive biceps) advanced to Saturday night’s final with “I Feel Alive.”

This is a further blow to BDS-holes, who had tried to convince people to not vote for him.

This week Europeans (and also Australians) will get a chance to tell Israel what we think of the oppression and dispossession of the Palestinians, and to express solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. In the Eurovision Song Contest, we should give Zero Points to the Song of Israeli Apartheid!” demands the group on its Facebook page.

Addressing all 43 participating countries in the song contest, the group tells potential voters that they “would be able to strike a big blow for justice and human dignity at small cost, without leaving your living room.

“If you care about such things as justice, freedom, human rights or simple human decency, you should take part in the Eurovision televoting process. In general, you should rate the various songs as you see fit – but take care to give the Israeli song A BIG FAT ZERO.”

Perhaps admitting that the Israeli entry is quite catchy, the group says that “even if there will appear in Kiev an exquisitely beautiful Israeli song, it will be a beauty covering up a loathsome ugliness – the ugliness of oppression, dispossession and killing.”

But did you know there was a time when Israel’s actions in defending her citizens not only did not trigger calls to rig the vote against us, but actually inspired a song by one of the other entrants?

In 1977, Norwegian singer Dag Spantell performed Jonathan, about Yonatan Netanyahu, who was killed while commanding Israeli commandos during Operation Entebbe the previous year.

He ended up in 5th place, not a bad result at all. And Israel would end up winning the contest the following two years: with A-Ba-Ni-Bi and Hallelujah.

Good times – at least for Israel at Eurovision.

Hat tip: Norway in Israel


David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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