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Arab-Israeli Singer Nasreen Qadri: Why Radiohead Should Perform in Israel

I have already posted the video of Arab-Israeli singer Nasereen Qadri saying she is a Zionist. Now she has written an op-ed Newsweek decrying BDS and fully supporting Radiohead and other artists performing here.

Much has been said and written ahead of Radiohead’s concert in Tel Aviv this week. The successful British rock band has been under pressure to cancel its visit to Israel, in another attempt to boycott the only democracy in the Middle East.

But such an approach is counter-productive and only hurting those who wish to promote peace and tolerance in a troubled region.

This approach is hurting me. I am a Muslim Arab woman. I am a singer. And this Wednesday, I will share the stage with Radiohead in their concert.

I was born in Haifa and grew up in Lod—two cities with a mix of Arab and Jewish communities, living side by side. It wasn’t always easy, but my personal experience has taught me that open dialogue is the only way to overcome our differences. Ever since I won a singing competition on Israeli TV, my music and my story have inspired many in Israel to open their minds and hearts to Arabic music and my people’s culture.

I have dedicated my life to music, and dedicated my music to breaking down borders and bringing people closer together. That is why this past year I did what no other Arab-Israeli has done before, and sang in Israel’s official Independence and Memorial Day ceremonies.

This Wednesday, I will also perform alongside one of Israel’s most talented artists, Dudu Tassa—a Jewish singer—to bring a message of co-existence to every corner of the country.

Those who call for boycott are only trying to divide us. They are trying to shut down the music. I will not be a part of that. Sadly, there are too many countries in the Middle East in which such a concert could have never taken place.

I was lucky to be born in Israel, and I am grateful for the opportunity to build bridges of understanding.

Read the whole thing.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

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
Picture of David Lange

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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