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Rolling Stone Covers The Nova Music Festival Exhibition

When it comes to Israel and the Jewish people, Rolling Stone has been a bit hit and very much miss in recent years.

At the moment, they are running a photo gallery of Inside the Nova Music Festival Exhibition, which falls firmly into the former category – except for the part in bold below.

On October 7, 2023, Hamas terrorists attacked the Nova Music Festival, a trance festival held in Israel’s Negev Desert, killing more than 360 people and abducting dozens more. It would become the deadliest concert in history. Around 3,000 attendees had flocked to the area — about three miles from the Gaza border — for the event that was set to feature 16 DJs performing through the night.

In April, organizers including HYBE-America CEO Scooter Braun, lead producers Josh Kadden and Joe Teplow and the team behind the Nova Festival opened October 7th 06:29 AM — The Moment Music Stood Still, an exhibit in Lower Manhattan to commemorate those that were murdered. The exhibit features items (camping gear, clothing) and structures (soundsystems, bars) collected from the festival alongside video from before and during the festival taken by both attendees and Hamas insurgents. The exhibit was on display in Tel Aviv for 10 weeks before arriving in New York, where it will run through June 22. (Organizers also plan to bring it to Los Angeles later this year.) 

“The whole idea of doing this exhibit is helping the [dance] community go back to the dancefloor,” says Ilan Faktor, a longtime trance music promoter in Israel and one of the exhibit organizers. “Music and dancing are the most universal and healing elements in life.”

Though the project is privately funded, some have erroneously alleged that it is a government-backed effort to bolster the Israeli perspective in the war, which has so far killed more than 37,000 Palestinians and 1,100 Israelis. Earlier this week, hundreds of protestors rallied outside the exhibit, with some chanting “Long live the Intifada” and “Israel, go to hell.” Pro-Palestine activist Nerdeen Kiswani wrote that the Nova festival was “a rave next to a concentration camp” and called the exhibit “propaganda used to justify the genocide in Palestine.”

Faktor emphasizes that The Moment Music Stood Still is not meant as a political statement, but as a memorial to the people who died in the attack. “The idea was to not have any political aspect and to present the most universal thing of dancing,” says Faktor. “You’re coming to protest in front of an exhibit that commemorates the lives of [hundreds of people] that were murdered in a music festival.”

It is frustrating that even for an ostensibly positive piece, Rolling Stone cites without question the discredited statistics from the Gaza Health Ministry, run by the same terrorists they mention earlier in the introduction (surprisingly using the word “terrorists”, not “militants”).

Nevertheless, one cannot underestimate the importance of a publication like Rolling Stone covering this important exhibition, for the most part impartially.

See the whole thing here.

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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