Should hip-hop boycott Israel?

I heard the news yesterday that David Banner is headed over to Iraq to perform for the troops, and I thought to myself, Really? But I thought David Banner was the one rapper who went to college.

The idea of artists going over to the Middle East to perform had been on my mind this week already, because earlier this week I read Artie Lange’s Too Fat Too Fish, part of which discusses his trip to Afghanistan to perform for the troops, and because I’ve been reading up on the BDS movement against Israel – BDS standing for boycott, divestment, and sanctions.

A couple of weeks ago, when I discussed, both here and on my own site, what Israel just did to Gaza, as well as my “beef” with Peter Rosenberg over the fact (notice my use of the term fact here) that his father is a member of the Israel Lobby, I was surprised to realize the sheer level of solidarity with the Palestinian cause in the hip-hop community, and I think the BDS movement against Israel coud very well be one of the defining causes of our time, not unlike the movement to end apartheid in South Africa back in the 1980s.

I’ll have to expand on this at a later date, once I’ve had the time to conduct the sufficient research, including how we can go about being active in this movement. For example, which, if any of these “hip-hop” clothing lines should we not be supporting? I’ve got a few ideas, and I think you know which ones I’m talking about, but I don’t want to fly off half-cocked. Nullus. Plus, I’m thinking this might be the kind of movement I might have to conduct primarily on my own site. Which is not to suggest that anyone at XXL is in favor of apartheid. (Calm down, guys!) I’m just saying.

One thing I will point out is that I was surprised to read, in my preliminary research into this matter, that I’m actually a little bit behind the curve on this movement, as far as the hip-hop community is concerned. Which was actually nice to know, despite the fact that it was somewhat of a blow to my oh, so fragile ego, in that it goes to show, like I was saying, the widespread support for this movement in hip-hop.

I remember reading, a while back, that Snoop Dogg canceled a show he agreed to play in Israel, and at the time, because I’m still traumatized by the events of 9/11, thinking he might have been afraid that, if he did play the show, some angry Palestinians might show up and throw rocks at him. But now that I think about it, I realize I might have been mistaken. Why would angry Palestinians be allowed to attend a Snoop Dogg show in Israel in the first place? You know how ridonkulous the security apparatus is over in Israel.

Snoop Dogg, for his part, claims there were “contractual differences.” But I wonder if he figured he’d just say that, so as not to offend the people who own his record label. What’s the likelihood that there was really a problem with his contract, after a Palestinian group already called for him to respect the boycott? At the risk of employing a harmful stereotype… c’mon, you know them Israelis could have come up with some extra money, if it meant avoiding a PR kerfuffle.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Snoop Dogg really did purposely observe the boycott. Over the past couple of years now, he’s been gradually emerging as one of the most conscientous members of our community – from his insightful comments in the wake of the Imus incident, to his support for death row inmate Stanley “Tookie” Williams. Could it be all of the weed he smokes? You know how potheads are alway down for a good cause, even if they have know idea what it’s about.

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    Not sure if a Hip-Hop boycott would mean shit to the Israelis.

  • DV8

    are you serious? that would cut off alot of hiphop’s money. Interscope, Atlantic, and Universal (pretty much all the major labels) all are run by T.I.’s (Tall Isreali’s, for those that dont know). You think hiphop is in a financial slump now, fuck with those Isreali’s and then watch how quick the money dries up even more.

  • Slang Editor

    Well, Snoop’s got a Palestinian-American homie: producer Fredwreck Nassar.

    • DV8

      very true, I forgot all about Fareed Nassar. Where is that guy? Hes been M.I.A. for some time now.

  • dameSTATUS

    i’m torn on this one, grammar wise Bol:

    Divestment – is def’ly over some heads.

    but Know vs. No (last sentence) is a tell-tall dumb person sign!!

    Oh, I’m torn (II)

    • GorillaJoe

      In Bol’s defense, did you mean, “tell-tale” perhaps?

      Just sayin’.

      • Smel

        Bol’s splittin his time between too many jobs and half-ass editing is the result.

        Still better than 90-95% of other bullshit out there, even with typos. Time to hire an editor, with all that extra income (or maybe he’s already done so, and THAT dumbass missed the typo..hmm)

  • Avenger XXL

    Hip-hop don’t need to mess with the TI’s unless they want to mess up their money. I see you Lyor Cohan and Jerry Heller.

  • dameSTATUS

    Kurupt would always shout out “Fred” (Fredwreck), and “Simon” (Suge, right?).

    And DJ Quik would always shout out Player Ham, and Mc Eiht would always shout out Little Hawkenberg (sp?)

    Coincidence? Me Thinks NOT.


    dameSTATUS is live editing cats out chea.

  • Matt Herbz

    Bol, how about I just make ‘em an offer they can’t refuse. I’ll send my consiglieri to talk to these TI fellows and see if there is not an agreement we can reach peacefully. Then, they will each wake up one morning with 50 lbs of non-kosher hot dogs in their own juices pooling up at the foot of the bed.

    While I’m at it, is there any 1 rapper who you would like to be signed to a major label?

    –Matt Herbz–

  • these posts are racist

    wow. awesome post. I need to change my name to these posts are awesome. end apartheid in palestine. grant all palestinians equal rights under the law.

  • Dub Sac

    I’ll have to expand on this at a later date, once I’ve had the time to conduct the sufficient research…

    Bol, you’re not conducting research on shit. Stop frontin’.

  • Eman

    I thought XXl was a hip hop site but since its not Why dont you talk about something like obama shutting down gitmo and having no plan for all the prisoners there that wanna kill are families .

  • FlapJack

    Wow.. is that you bol?

    Hell yeah hip-hop should boycott!

    And on the “employing a harmful stereotype”-tip, would they really do anything about it, thus fucking up their money? cchhheeell naw


    “You know how ridonkulous the security apparatus is over in Israel.”

    Yo that section was like someone who doesn’t live in the US brushing off the idea that there could be any potential terrorists there because of how tight security is.

    Add that to the fact that, no, most of the readers don’t know anything about security in Israel and I imagine neither do you.

    I agree that Israel needs to fall back on the shit they just pulled and be punished for war crimes. However, I don’t agree this is some S.Africa type-shit going on. Nor do I believe it deserves anymore attention than what’s going on elsewhere like Sudan or Zimbabwe.

  • Izza

    Just saw you in The Guardian’s Guide supplement you fruit. Lol.

  • Maurice L Dees

    Israel have the right to protect there people no boycott.

  • Shimon Simon

    r u some punk motherfuckers? the arabs r the ones who r murdering black native africans in sudan for not being muslim, Israel is the country of the Jews, the people who suffered as much and worse discrimination as blacks and any other minority. have u seen how many arab countries there r on the map and only 1 Jewish country? the only place where they allow hip hop to exist in any muslim country it is banned.
    check out all the dif Israeli hip hop artists like Subliminal, Mukki,etc. They appreciate it the most there if u didnt know.