The Artistic Suicide Bombers (updated)

Now jump

I think Mashrou3 Leila have just gotten the honor of becoming the region’s first artistic suicide bombers. They have successfully, and spectacularly, killed off their own career for a dubious cause.

Much like real suicide bombers, they will be cheered on by mobs who didn’t have anything to lose, mobs who were very happy to see someone else die for their cause (and who will doubtless find all sorts of excuses when they themselves are asked to die for the same cause). Much like real suicide bombers, their loved ones will cry and suffer as the “comrades” in the cause bestow on them worthless posthumous honorifics in their worthless rags and worthless podiums.

I have no doubts that Mashrou3 Leila have killed their career. They have botched their big break to get out of their “indie” cocoon. All good bands start as “indie”, but in the end, the good ones get a larger, real audience. The world’s best bands started as indie bands, but only the losers and talentless stayed indie all their lives. Mashrou3 Leila will now never upgrade, because no sane famous band will ever sign them on to open for them. Who in their right mind will sign off a fickle band that will bail at the last minute like Leila did?

And the worst part? They may not be true believers in the cause. They may have done this simply because many of their fans have aggressively asked them on Facebook to die for them. Meanwhile, thousands of Lebanese will still attend Red Hot Chili Pepper’s concert, and Israel won’t feel a thing.

You know what’s the only thing worse than a suicide bomber? It’s a dumb suicide bomber who dies for nothing.


The problem with much of the criticism I got on twitter and in the comments is that it assumes that Mashrou’ Leila took a principled stand for a cause they believed in. As things stand today, there is no evidence that this is the case.

We never got a “We are happy to announce that we will boycott RHCP’s concert because we don’t support their trip to Israel, and we wholeheartedly condemn the crimes of the apartheid regime” from the band. All we got was a small statement that sounds like the kind of stuff people with a gun to their head (metaphorical) would write.

They might as well have written: “Fine, here’s your fucking boycott”.

I don’t buy for a second the “legal reasons” explanation of why they made such a terse statement. Unless they state otherwise, many of us will remain convinced that these people were beaten into submission. That is a stain, not a badge of honor on the chests of the boycott movement.

Tens of thousands of Lebanese will be enjoying Red Hot Chilli pepper tonight. The biggest losers in this episode were Mashrou3 Leila.

→ Respond to this post On Twitter
  • Sam540

    I don’t understand the fuss of boycotting RHCP. Do we boycott movies that are released in Israeli theaters? Do we boycott brands that sell in Israel? Why should we boycott an international band? This is a backward mentality. We should show the world that we are also able to host big events!

    • Anonymous

      @ Sam540: if you want the chance to share your views for BBC, please get in touch – @WHYS-BBC

  • eliefares

    I don’t think they killed their career – but they killed the possibility of a major leap forward just because they couldn’t take the “criticism” that was thrown at them.
    They will still make albums. And their fans will buy them. And they might grow in the coming years. But this concert would have been a catalyst to get them there much faster.

    They must have thought a few disgruntled fans were more important than the silent majority that doesn’t voice its negative opinion. Either way, what the Lebanese BDS is doing is cultural terrorism. They are killing prospects for Lebanese bands – and for what? Absolutely nothing. And I think it’s high time we stand up to them because this is bullying.

  • Z. H.

    Amen to your closing remarks. What a spectacular way to finish off such a promising career. Now they’ll forever be branded “that stupid band of populist AUBites” and speculations would abound about whether they were followers of Haraket el Sha3eb during their engineering study days.

  • Patrick

    Did they really kill their career? They were only opening to RHCP in Lebanon, everyone knows of them in Lebanon. So what would have changed? It’s not like RHCP would have asked them to join them on tour anywhere else.

  • Liliane

    If there is a cause, if them being related to someone really affect what is happening between Israel and Palestine, I wouldn’t tell them to boycott, I would (and i did) suggest that they sing for Palestine. But once again, Lebanon is meant to carry the shit and the “cause” for all Arab countries, w 3a 7sebna, while other Arab countries advance e.g. UAE and Jordan.

  • Subway Mom

    I love your analogy and totally agree! They have totally limited their career! It is very unfortunate and sad!

    There has to be an end to the double standards that are ruining our local talent and our artistic culture! Inno 3njad like Sam said,”would we boycott a movie that’s going to be released in Isreal?” News Flash: All movies are released in Israel! (just in case someone was dellusional that they’re not)

    Lebanon used to be the Paris of the Middle East! A gateway for art in the region! And now we boycott bands so they no longer want to come and perform here. Instead they go to Dubai and the UAE reaps the benefits economically and touristically. w ba3den we complain that our economy is suffering and there are no jobs! Seriously?!

    Wake up, people!

  • Alaa Kabalan (@alaakabalan)

    I think Liliane proposed the best solution that Mashrou’ Leila would have done. Instead of boycotting, seize the moment and do something even as simple as singing a song for Palestine.

  • snfu93f3v

    watch this

  • romeo

    It is difficult to talk about the Palestinian/Zionist conflict without slipping into “absolutes”.

    Let me explain.

    I am talking about expressions such as “they are finished”, “their career is down the drain”, “Lebanese are suckers”, “Palestinians destroyed Lebanon”.

    Please take a larger view of the Middle East and the root causes of the Palestinian plight.

    The mistakes of the PLO, the armed groups, etc. does not *lessen* the current and continuing plight of the Palestinian people in Israel.

    In Apartheid South Africa, not all Whites were guilty. Same for Israel. Not all Israelis support the racist views of the fringe.

    Unfortunately, in South Africa as in Israel, there was/is a *very powerful machinery* (media, funders, networks) that works day and night to make the Palestinian suffering seem like an imaginary problem.

    It is up to the rest of the world, especially artists, to make their views known on this subject.

    Some of the most famous artists in the world have taken a stance (e.g. see Roger Waters article )

    Yes I admire Mashrou3 Leila for their music and all. But they must be admired more for sticking to humanist principles *at the expense* of their 15-min-of-fame, or small gig with RHCP.

    If career advancement and short-lived fame is all that we care about, we are certainly a nation to be pitied.

    • Mustapha

      Explain to me Romeo, is that the case for bullying bands to take positions they wouldn’t have taken otherwise?

      High minded values are good and all, but there are no good causes that can justify tyranny..

      • romeo

        There is no proof of tyranny Mustapha. You are *guessing* that there was unwanted pressure, then a reluctant response from ML.

        IMHO, no matter what the circumstances are, boycott by musicians is a very effective way of getting the attention of the dormant international masses. Believe me, I live abroad, and the world is awakening to the truth. The Zionist propaganda machine can’t keep up anymore.

        It is also very effective in opening the eyes of the offending locals (Israelis) that think that it’s OK to treat your fellow citizen (Palestinian) as an animal behind cage bars (the Wall).

        I have a feeling that our lingering hatred of the PLO/Civil War/etc is tainting the opinion of some of the Lebanese commenters here.

        This is understandable.

        But it is really time to turn the page folks.

    • random thought

      Cry us a river! And get off your high horse, boycott! Really, then why don’t you boycott everything that Israel will profit from, including your pc / mac / smart phone / water and the list goes on…Stop making Lebanon the stage for Palestinian independence! We can hardly take care of ourselves…and for the love of God let music be …..enough

      • romeo

        If everyone had a “random thought” like that one (pun intended LOL), then we will all be playing music while the world burned.

        Sometime the music has to stop for people to realize that there is suffering out there…and your music ain’t fun anymore.

  • Marie

    Patrick- you’re right, everyone in Beirut knows who they are, but the benefit for Mashrou3 would come from not only the shared publicity from the RHCP but the chance that the band likes their performance and tweets or FB about it to their millions of international followers. Their FB page alone has over 19 million fans. That’s HUGE exposure, not to mention a very impressive line item on the band’s resume.

    I also very much agree with Liliane, they should have played and then incorporated some sort of peaceful message of hope for the Palestinian people into their show. Think of how inspiring and powerful that would have been.

    The thing that killed me the most, is some of the BDS supporters weren’t even satisfied with Mashrou3 cancelling. There were comments like “If you really supported the Palestinian cause, you wouldn’t have agreed to perform in the first place!” Sometimes you just can’t win for losing.

  • Beshr Kayali (@beshr)

    Absolutely agreed with this.

    I always felt sad about Mashrou3 Leila for not getting enough support as an indie band (though I’m not a big fan of their music), this was a huge opportunity fo them, but they wasted it because of their stupid mentality of “Boycott those who refuse to boycott”

    I blame all the lame ass activists who pushed Leila into taking such decision, but part of the responsibility also falls on Leila for submitting to such unjustifiable propaganda.

  • Shiwa7ad

    Well it’s only the most elementary prudence on Mashrou3 Leila’s part. You know, they don’t have a family armed wing to protect them, and unless one is willing to provide them with such an armed wing, one should not criticize them.
    If they had continued, they would have been made responsible of the fall of Jerusalem, the invasion of South Lebanon, and the Syrian uprising. In the current conditions, even the safety of the spectators cannot be guaranteed. Even France’s ambassador was made to land in Damascus instead of Beirut, and if Assad had decided to go Saddam’s way, the French ambassador would have been a hostage/human shield.
    So I really don’t think one should be too enthusiastic in condemning/criticizing Mashrou3 Leila. And you know, if they had quit in order to make a stand against Israeli occupation, they would have *said* so. So don’t say they left you in the unknown.

  • Hala M*

    Il y a une question de principes qui me dérange énormément depuis que cette hsitoire a commencé à faire le buzz sur la toile.
    Il y a le fait que les « Red Hot Chili Peppers » seront à Tel Aviv le 10 septembre, juste après le concert de Beyrouth. Et la censure Libanaise fait silence. Donc on reçoit des artistes qui iront en Israël APRES leur passage par Beyrouth. Mais nous ne recevons pas les artistes qui sont déjà partis chanter, danser voire même présenter leur pièce de théâtre à Tel Aviv. N’est ce pas la même chose ??? N’est ce pas une forme d’hypocrisie qui nous nargue de loin en nous prenant pour des cons ?
    Il y aussi autre chose que j’aimerai dire… et j’espère que ces mots seront écoutés, d’une manière ou d’une autre. Je peux comprendre la prise de position du jeune groupe Libanais « Mashrou3 Leila » mais j’aimerais expliquer une chose très essentielle….
    L’art est engagé par nature. Le monde, l’Histoire entière de l’humanité n’auraient pu se développer si l’art n’avait pas pris le rôle de catalyseur à travers les âges. Ce que ce jeune groupe aurait du faire, et c’est ce que Liliane a dit, c’es de monter sur les planches, et de chanter, et d’inviter les « Red Hot Chili peppers » à communiquer avec eux. La « CAUSE » si elle existe toujours aurait pu prendre un aspect positif. Le dialogue aurait pu être établi à travers la chanson, l’art…. mais refuser cette prestation, et se poser les mauvaises questions là, est e danger qui va finir par nous exploser à la figure.
    Par manque d’intellect, par manque de courage aussi, par manque d’ouvertures d’esprit…

  • Nadine Toukan (@nadinetoukan)

    Harsh conclusion. These are confusing times, it seems they felt the need to rethink and pay attention to their crowd, and they are no less for it.

    Their career will be just fine. And if they see themselves as indie forever, that’s a great choice and no less than mainstream if it’s what they and the fans want – indie does not equate ‘losers and talentless’ as you put it. Talent is talent and the world is full of opportunities. As long as Mashrou3 Leila produce great work with their fans they will go on to achieve remarkable things. The period of Arab awakening and the next couple of decades will be a wide open door of unstoppable opportunities for creative workers in this region and around the world.

  • Posh

    I never understood this hype about Mashrou3 Leila. Their music is mediocre and at times, very annoying it sounds like a cat dying.

    I don’t know what career you’re talking about. But, if there were any hope for one, I agree with the point you’ve made here ya Mustapha.

  • Anonymous

    This has to be the worst ‘article’ of all time! You ignorance is truly fascinating.

  • Z. H.

    Some people are getting the take-home message at least; destructive boycott mentality should be replaced by creative use of international exposure.

    I said this no Mus’s last post and I’ll say it now; we need to learn the true meaning of “civil society”, “national sentiment”, “Social marketing” and communicate our advocacy creatively, just like we used to be famous for as the pioneer wave of artists and graphic designers in the Middle East.

    Waynkon ya AUBites w ya LAU who started on media communication since the early nineties? where were the media houses and entertainment industries of the Gulf then? How did we get so far behind so fast? We need to regain our EDGE

  • Anonymous

    Their career is awesome and it’ll keep getting better. Who doesn’t agree with what they’ve done it’s up to them. The majority demanded the band not to play and the band listened. And for that they’ll earn the respect of their fans for ever. End of story 😉

  • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

    RHCP is gleefully performing in Israel next, they have been promoting their Israel concert and not really doing the same for their Lebanese concert. Forget about Palestinians if you don’t care about expressing solidarity with us, but aren’t you ashamed to defend the band that will be playing for the criminals that massacred Lebanese people a few years ago, or did you forget already?

    • Sam540

      Dude if you want to boycott everything that goes to Israel we would end up losing. Stop being narrow minded. So what if RHCP go to Israel? Because by your logic I should stop drinking Pepsi because it sells in Israel. I am sick of people positioning this as the fight against Israel. It’s not!

      • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

        The “narrow-mindedness” that you are accusing me is what brought down apartheid in South Africa. Boycott works. Targeting people that do business with Israel, works. The same people that are disgusted with Palestinian “bully” tactics around boycott are the same people that are disgusted by Palestinian suicide bombers. Thankfully, Palestinians are not asking the Lebanese street what our tactics should look like.

  • Josephine

    Indulge me in pointing out a few flaws in your argument:

    1. I beg to differ, RHCP has indeed promoted their concert in Lebanon on social media; and anyways concert promotion typically falls under the venue’s responsibility to a point, not the band.
    2. This whole “with us or against us” mentality reeks of blind conformism and is very off-putting. Why can’t someone support the Palestinian cause and still be sympathetic to Mashrou’ wanting to play for a Lebanese audience? Who is this invisible Palestinian body that dictates what its followers will and will not agree with?
    3. Sorry, but not all Israelis are criminals, unless you’re defining “criminal” as apathetic complacency, in which case many around the world are guilty including your fellow Arabs.
    4. If I were Palestinian, I wouldn’t go around trying to guilt Lebanese people into action by pointing out all the bad things Israel has done to Lebanon, because let’s not forget that many Lebanese hold scars from Palestinian actions too. The idea isn’t to finger-point because no one is innocent here.

  • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

    Yes, Palestinians have a great memory too and they didn’t forget what certain Lebanese did to them in the past or the shameful conditions which they are currently being subjected to inside of Lebanon. I do not care to appeal to any Lebanese for a sense of justice in regards to Palestine, feel or don’t feel what you want. But as Lebanese, you should be concerned at the very least at the love RHCP is expressing towards the usurping Zionist entity since that same entity is responsible for killing thousands of Lebanese just very recently, the blood of your people has not yet dried.

    Again, I cannot see how any self-respecting Lebanese would a) want to open for RHCP and b) go to see the RHCP.

    I understand there is a lack of diversity in the entertainment coming to Lebanon and yes, everyone wants to have fun, but to be eager to have fun with those expressing “love” towards a state that is still is making DAILY threats to bomb your country (not just the South, but your entire country) it just really baffles me. I am quite frankly surprised that so many Lebanese willingly go on the record and express their indignation about the movement to boycott normalizers of Israel.

    Not all Israelis are war criminals, but, all Israelis serve in the Israeli army which is responsible for grotesque human rights violations in your country and mine. It is not until Israelis feel the tangible sting of boycott that they will turn their back on their warmongering government. By defending normalizers you lead us to nothing except more of the same status quo.

    “In promoting the Beirut concert, Kiedis never spoke out. But when addressing Tel Aviv, the singer flooded the occupation entity with words of love and flattery, saluting the Palestinian city of Haifa because “it is Hillel Slovak’s hometown,” in reference to the band’s late guitarist.”

    • Fsahar

      Not all Israelis serve in the Israeli military. The religious ones don’t and neither do our fellow Arabs. Did you forget about them? They’ll probably be some going to see RHCP.

      • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

        The “Arabs” you are referring to are Palestinians who are the forefront of the BDS and anti-normalization movement.

    • Fsahar

      I don’t know any “Israeli-Palestinians” or “Arab Israelis” or whatever you want to call them who are active in BDS. Certainly not every single one does. And if they are they are hypocrites because every day they are buying Israeli products and paying taxes to Israel, not to mention accepting the services of the Israeli government.

      • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

        You’re judging the 48 Palestinians for being hypocrites for staying in their homes? If you don’t know any 48 Palestinians that are leading the boycott movement then perhaps you need to widen the circle of Palestinian friends you have.

    • Fsahar

      Name one 48 Palestinian who is a leader in BDS. And it remains hypocrisy: “Don’t attend Israeli universities!” while attending an Israeli university yourself, Omar Barghouti style. “Boycott Israeli businesses” while buying from them yourself. You may say they have no choice. I say, change your own behavior before you judge others.

      • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

        They are Israeli universities on occupied Palestinian land, what’s wrong with you? Are you saying that 48 Palestinians should remain without an education so that they can be the maids of the Israelis? You want the 48 Palestinians to be in the same crap position that Palestinian refugees in Lebanon find themselves in? Also, I encourage you to do a little research perhaps join twitter and follow the Palestinian activists both inside and outside of the green line who are united in their BDS efforts and at the forefront of the almost daily protests that take place throughout the occupied territories. If and when you are interested in doing something other than pushing your normalization agenda I will be happy to provide you with a list of activists — many of whom were Palestinians inside of Israel (AND A HANDFUL OF ISRAELI JEWS) who are calling for RHCP not to perform in Israel.

  • BiGsAm

    Some of you commenting here have an IQ level of a toilet seat! The same people asking for boycott probably eat, drink, wear and use Israeli backed/owned products! GET A LIFE PEOPLE!

    • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

      Actually, BigSam, some of us do avoid all Israeli products as much as possible when we become aware of the fact that they are Israeli. Really, the level of tolerance that some Lebanese are expressing towards Israel is sickening.

      • Shiwa7ad

        Well we (who sicken you) only copy the behavior of the higher authorities. As a proponent of the boycott, I am sure you are aware that General Motors has an R&D center in Israel, which contributes to the economic power of Israel much more than Red Hot Chili Peppers. Yet you see, Hezbollah (of which most of us on this blog are fanatical admirers, as Mus will confirm) decided to wish “Khosh Amedid” to President Ahmadinejad by choosing a Great-Satan-manufactured Chevy for him during the parade. I am sure you remember this picture:
        Also, just in case you’re not aware of it, the laptops in front of the ministers of the Kollouna lil watan Koullouna lil 3amal Government of Lebanon all have Intel chips (and do I need to tell you all how large the investments of Intel in Israel are ?). Also the operating system are all Microsoft Windows, that also has an R&D center in Israel. (We know about the operating system from the fact that a minister was caught playing solitaire, which ships with Windows) I hope you will agree with me that this even represents a security risk. Why not choose a Loongson processor:
        with a Linux operating system ? In that way, boycotting will look much more serious, and it will look less than simply a way to blackmail the citizenry into submission. So please, drive in Khodro cars, buy Loongson processors, use Linux, and then lecture us about your disgust towards people who don’t take the Israel boycott seriously

  • Y. (@exploitedarab)

    I would debate the worthiness of such a tactic with you, but since you’re blog post responses are nearing on fascism, you’re unworthy of the time that’ll be spent on such a response. However, since Im here reading about your little publicly stunt, I will say one thing: anyone here, due to racist prejudices or otherwise, that finds this boycott to be pointless is a moron. Seriously, you are. Roger Waters of Pinkfloyd, a band much bigger than RHCP, fully supports the boycott. So, too, does Tom Morello from RATM, amongst many others. These gigantic artists, with huge careers the likes of which your so-styled music reviews fall short of ever capturing in words are fully supportive of the boycott. You, on the other hand, are a lousy bunch of ignorant youth seeking recognition for opinions that are not yours. Really, you are! For Mashrou Leila to boycott Israel makes sense, as they’re Lebanse, and they’re taking a moral stand that they’re being applauded for. As opposed to, for example, yourself, a self titled blogger, who takes a line very similar to that of Israel’s when it comes to cultural boycotts. Therefore, it is given that your opinion is the one that deviates from social norms, and not that of Mashrou Leila. Remember, assho**s, the bands we still remember to this day are the ones whom seldom sold out.

  • Anonymous

    so not opening RHCP is going to kill their career, khalas?! Other than the fact that your logic is sick, and your whole rhetoric is self-hating, self-orientalising and most importantly, just sad..

    Musicians are artists, and ML are no exception. Art stands for expression, and if this decision was an expression of solidarity for a HUMANITARIAN crisis sans religion, sans nationalism then thats their prerogative, not yours to make such claims..

    And I am sure you patted yourself on the shoulder coming up with your wonderful analogy with suicide bombers, Its not tasteful.

    operation foot in mouth in progress I see…

  • Anonymous

    I was discussing this issue with a friend who is getting his phd at a US university with a full ride. He was weirdly pro the move by ML. I asked if he would decline his scholarship and acceptance to his very good university because it had israeli students and had an active study abroad program with israeli univsersities.

    It’s never the same when it’s about you.

  • Anonymous

    As a big fan of Mashrou` Leila and an Israeli (there are quite a lot fans of the band here) I don’t feel that I can intervene in your debate but I would like to give my viewpoint nevertheless:
    Personally I’m waiting to the time you’ll understand that we Israelis are also victims of the political powers in the region including our government of course. A change will happen only when we, the people of the middle east, will unite against the system to stop this, for a different and better political situation. But for this to happen you must stop seeing us as ultimate devils. In boycotting (or boycotting those who don’t boycott, or boycotting those who don’t boycott those who don’t boycott) you’re just helping the forces of hatred to the interest of the governments, and certainly not helping the Palestinian cause.

    • Muy, muy malcriada. (@KisImak)

      I don’t care much for your Israeli opinion on BDS and how much you don’t like it. You can’t think we are going to wait around for you guys to hit the streets. Oh wait, you did protest, for cheaper rent and cottage cheese and not for an end to the occupation. When you guys stop electing war criminal after war criminal and when you hit the streets en masse against the brutal occupation and apartheid that is being done in your name, then perhaps I might give one F about your views on BDS, until then, I am not interested in Israeli whining over the unfairness of boycott.

      • R

        I did not whine over the unfairness of boycott. In fact this kind of boycott does not affect me in any way, it affects only Lebanese, and most Israelis of course are not aware of it even. Nor am I trying to judge Leila decision as I am not in their place.
        I am just trying to make you give another thought if BDS serves your aim, or maybe it does only harm, not to me, to your purpose and to the Palestinian cause.
        I can say Lebanese are also electing war criminals again and again, from Geagea to Nasrallah, so maybe Israeli bands should also boycott RHCP because they performed in Lebanon? Perhaps that’s the moral thing to do? I don’t think so.
        Your views just remind me Israelis who say we must not care for Palestinians till they stop firing rockets. A positive change will not happen that way.

  • Guy

    Great concert by RHCP tonight! The fact that this boycott was so silly was shown by the number of people that showed up and the energy that they had. I don’t even think anyone noticed or cared that Mashrou3 Leila didn’t show up once the RHCP got on stage. Too bad for them they lost a great opportunity for exposure, all while the RHCP go to Israel next, no one gives a damn, and life goes on.

  • Veebs

    Just out of curiosity, did the” Mashrou’ Leila” band members at least attend the concert in question as spectators? It seems it was a success (the show), packed audience, wonderful music, good organization. Oh, and I would also be interested in finding out how many of the heroic fans of “Mashrou’ Leila” boycotted the RHCP (i never knew the band existed until the brave boycott of “Mashrou’ Leila”, or should we say the last minute breach of contract). Time to reassess your priorities “Mashrou’ Leila”


    Really strange for me. Why do they do this suicide bombers?

  • Firas Sanioura

    People! The fact that people supporting the boycott are not leaving their names/Alias is a good example that they are not supporting their stand 100%.
    This is a blunt form of Cultural Terrorism that just happened here. Fact is, Mashrou’ Leila where deprived of the opportunity of a lifetime. Fact is this will not probably kill their career, but will stain it forever. Fact is that this is the first time the RHCP ever played in the middle east, Israel included. And finally, the RHCP do not support Zionism, nor have they previously did in any form or way. Israel is just another stop on their world tour that includes hundred of cities around the world. The Israeli event is about the same size as ours.
    The bigger fact is that this is a missed opportunity for all the Arabian causes, as in stead of connecting with other civilization through the universal language of music, in stead of putting our causes on show, in stead of saying something, we chose the passive aggressive route! Boycott only works for specific targets of specific issues. Only boycotting them for simply playing in Israel won’t work. We should have a more universal issue with them. If they were playing in a jewish colony for example would have been a good cause.
    This was an opportunity to show our best band play with one of the best rock bands of all times. In stead an anonymous band that nobody listed to opened the concert to the general public’s non interest. And the members of RHCP were so exited to play in Beirut, any look at their tweets will show you the level of interest they had of our capital city. But the issue of boycott increased the level of security concerns they had little interaction with that public.
    But I think it’s futile to explain to political bigots the cultural importance of this kind of events because they are so blinded by their political agendas they forget the big picture. Palestine is a land, it’s people have a culture that defines them, only highlighting the fanatics and extremists didn’t serve them well and never will, and finally choosing the battles to defend them will win their battle. Engaging the Palestinian cause in Don Qui Chot battle all the time will only weaken it.
    My heart is with you Mashrou’ Leila, I’m still a fan, I’m a bit disappointed, but I feel your agany inside. And my hat’s off to the RHCP who expressed their love to this country, that is being battered by it’s own citizens all the time!

  • rubber ducky

    Regardless of whether this whole RHCP business is conducive or not to the BDS movement, which I support – and I think this RHCP business is not conducive-, allow me to dislike the tone you used in writing this post, mus. You seem to be nuanced and objective to every issue except this one, and you fail to reach out to a wider audience and sound calm and rational. You’ve gone completely over the top, and in doing so, you alienated many people who may actually agree with you, have you chosen a different tone. This betrays serious personal issues when it comes to Israel/Palestine and the whole debacle typical of self-hating Arab liberals with middle class delusions. I urge you to calm down before using words such as “artistic suicide bombers”, because that’s very OTT and unreasonable. Having said that, I agree with the general point of your post.

    • rubber ducky

      one might even say you’ve gone completely asad abukhalil on this one, but in the opposite direction

  • Observer

    Whose your Daddy?

    Santa Claus, Santa Saud or Santa Hussein?

  • Observer

    Looking forwards to the Saudi and Iranian version of “Home Alone” featuring the McDad McSaud clan.

  • M

    while I thought that many pro-boycott comments were bullying, now I think the post-boycott reaction of those who were against the boycott is overreactive and overly judgmental. You both use the same pressing tone and vocabulary to try to convince everyone who is reading that you hold the whole truth and that everyone who does not have your opinion is completely worthless.
    things are not so black and white. just get the hell over it everyone and carry on with your lives. I’m sick of these boycott ma boycott discussions. Jesus F****** Christ.

  • Observer


    What do you think will happen to the Assad installed crony Mikati after their downfall?

  • Omar Murray BEng (@murray_omar)

    Totally agree, such a dumb move why do they have to get involved in such a controversial political issue that has so many arguments for both sides. Mashrou Leila, I used to be a fan