Posted on 9/16/2014 4:36:04 AM
We are close to the massive protest rally against the Klinghoffer opera on Monday, Sept. 22, at 4:30 PM across from the Lincoln Center Plaza at Broadway and 65th Street. Excitement is growing throughout the many groups that are participating in the rally as well in the media. Today's NY Post carried a full page story on the opera by Andrea Peyser . The Jewish Voice of NY editorial page featured a protest against the opera. Full page ads have been appearing in many newspapers. Jeff Wiesenfeld, a member of our Coalition, was interviewed on the Rabbi Joe Potasnik show this past weekend and will be heard on the Nachum Segal radio show at the end of the week. Tomorrow morning, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 8 AM, AFSI's Executive Director Helen Freedman will be interviewed on the Nachum Segal radio show, and below we have a You Tube of her interview last Friday on Steve Malzburg's Newsmax TV show. The word is spreading and we are still hopeful that this opera, propaganda masquerading as art, will be cancelled. See below Lori Lowenthal Marcus' superb write-up on the opera for the Jewish Press.

Klinghoffer Protest News Spreading - TV, Radio, Social Media - Be there!!
The Klinghoffer opera transforms the Palestinian Arabs' false, lethal narrative into truth, while wresting away the truth of the Jewish connection to the land of Israel. A relationship which predates even the creation of Islam, let alone the Palestinian Arabs, by centuries.
Published: September 15th, 201

The most important thing to know about the Metropolitan Opera's staging of the provocation piece "The Death of Klinghoffer," is that the first of what should be many protests against it will be on Monday, Sept 22, starting at 4:30 p.m., at the Metropolitan Opera, which is nestled in the Lincoln Center Complex, at Broadway and West 65th Street in New York City.

The opera itself is still set to run at the Met for eight performances, starting on Monday, Oct. 20, running through mid-November. But in a concession that should serve as an admission, the Met pulled "Death" from its line-up of operas it simulcasts to theaters around the world.


Because as Peter Gelb, the Met's general manager admitted in a statement issued in mid-June, the international Jewish community is genuinely concerned that "the live transmission of The Death of Klinghoffer would be inappropriate at this time of rising anti-Semitism, particularly in Europe." 

It beggars the imagination that Gelb and his board recognized and acted in deference to genuine concern about the effect the opera could have for Jews in Europe, but shuts his ears to the genuine concern and outrage over staging it in New York City,where there is one of the largest concentration of Jews in the world.

What is wrong with this opera, you ask?  Spending hours listening to scenes from the opera only undergirds the enmity expressed towards the opera by concerned ranks of the Jewish community.


There are lines in this opera that are simply blatantly anti-Semitic. Lines such as this, sung by one of the terrorists to Klinghoffer: "wherever poor people are gathered they can find Jews getting fat. America is one big Jew."

And then there is this line sung about the Jews: "You know how to cheat the simple, exploit the virgin, pollute where you have exploited, defame those you cheated, and break your own law with idolatry."

Yes, those lines are both flat-footed and bigoted and should not have been written nor sung. If you think not, can you imagine an opera made about Ferguson in which Michael Brown and all black people are described with all the worst stereotypical insults leveled at African Americans? Of course not.

But the problems with the opera go far beyond several unforgivably offensive lines spoken by a romanticized Arab terrorist. And it's even worse than the decision to title the opera using a magic wand that converts a pathological act of brutal violence into a passive act for which no one, at least not the actual murderer and his accomplices, are to blame.


click here to continue article

Pro-Israel Activist: Opera at Met Is Anti-Semitic

Friday, 12 Sep 2014 07:01 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

A pro-Israel group will take to the streets of New York City to protest a Metropolitan Opera production of "The Death of Klinghoffer," which it believes is anti-Semitic.

Helen Freedmanexecutive director of Americans for a Safe Israel, told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV that her group will protest in front of the Met on Sept. 22nd at 4:30 p.m. over the opera's sympathetic portrayal of PLO terrorists.

Click here for  video.

Klinghoffer, a disabled American appliance manufacturer, was onboard the Achille Lauro cruise ship when it was taken over and held hostage by four armed Palestinian terrorists off the coast of Egypt in 1985.

They ordered the captain to sail to Syria and demanded the release of 50 Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons. Refused permission by the Syrian government to dock, the gunmen singled out Klinghoffer, shot him dead and his body was thrown overboard.

Composer John Adams' opera, "The Death of Klinghoffer,'' opened in 1991 and was criticized for being too sympathetic to the killers.

And while The Anti-Defamation League successfully lobbied to have the plug pulled on a worldwide broadcast of the Met production, the live show will go ahead in October and November.

"For starters, the title is so misleading. It wasn't that Leon Klinghoffer just died. He was a handicapped man in a wheelchair. He was executed by PLO terrorists who had hijacked the Achille Lauro, an Italian cruise ship in 1985," Freedman said.

"The librettist, Alice Goodman, has chosen to present the story in such a way that we don't sympathize with the victim. We are expected to sympathize with the terrorists They call themselves freedom fighters.

"We're supposed to understand that they are justified in selecting a man from the passengers just because he's a Jew and using him as a sacrificial lamb ... The lyrics are so offensive. 

They talk about America being 'one fat Jew.'"

Freedman also blasted Met General Manager Peter Gelb for allowing the opera to go ahead in the wake of protest.

"[That he] thinks it's appropriate to have an anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, pro-terrorist and anti-America opera for New York audiences is really incomprehensible and unacceptable," she said.

In a statement issued in June, Gelb said: "I'm convinced that the opera is not anti-Semitic."

Earlier this year, Ken Jacobson, deputy national director of the Anti-Defamation League, told Steve Malzberg that the opera, while not expressly anti-Semitic, leaves the impression that the terrorists had reason to kill.

"It is troubling. It doesn't defend the terrorists, but contextualizes their actions in a way and relates it to the suffering they claim is imposed on Palestinians by Israel,'' Jacobson said. 

"And subliminally [it] leaves the impression that the terrorists had reason to do what they did ... Of course, to do that in the face of horrible terrorism is not only personally offensive to the family ... it's so counterproductive in a world where terrorism is such a great threat.''

He said one particularly disturbing aspect is that the opera begins with words about how the Israelis allegedly drove the Palestinians from the Holy Land.

"And so that sets the stage for everything to come,'' Jacobson said.