Hollywood celebs unite for Israel

04 Oct 2014 21:48
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Some 300 Hollywood stars and entertainment professionals have signed an ad in support of Israel which appeared in Saturday's The New York Times. This is the second such ad in the past month.
Joining the original 190 celebrity signatories of the first ad in late August are film producers Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein and Lawrence Bender; music industry icons Carole Bayer Sager and Lou Adler; prominent actors Rob Morrow and Jon Lovitz, and many more.
The original group included Kelsey Grammer, Seth Rogen, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sarah Silverman and Sylvester Stallone, among others. "We are pained by the suffering on both sides of the conflict and hope for a solution that brings peace to the region," the ad says. Then it squarely puts the blame on Hamas. "Hamas cannot be allowed to rain rockets on Israeli cities, nor can it be allowed to hold its own people hostage. Hospitals are for healing, not for hiding weapons. Schools are for learning, not for launching missiles. Children are our hope, not our human shields." The initiative for the ad came from the Creative Community for Peace, an organization whose mission is to "bring together prominent members of the entertainment industry to counter the cultural boycott of Israel and promote the power of the arts to bring people together in peace." According to the Ynet news site and The Jerusalem Post, Academy and Emmy-award winning screenwriter and producer Aaron Sorkin commented on his own endorsement, saying, "The CCFP statement fully supports the right of the Palestinians in Gaza to live in peace and prosperity. We unambiguously condemn the values and actions of Hamas, a barbaric and brutal terrorist organization that is the enemy of basic human rights, equality, freedom and peace." "It is gratifying to see that recent events in Israel and Gaza have caused an outpouring of support for Israel in its fight against Hamas, whose founding charter calls for the death of all Jews and the obliteration of an entire nation."
The statement has already run in major industry publications, including Billboard, Variety, the Hollywood Reporter, and Deadline Hollywood, as well as in mainstream national publications such as the Los Angeles Times. The ad was also sent to international publications from India to Romania, including the Times of India, the Latin Post, Italy's Il Mattino, and Romania Libera.
The unifying statement also comes at a time of growing concerns regarding the rise of global anti-Semitism, usually cloaked in anti-Israel sentiment," said CCFP co-founder David Renzer.
"This is an unprecedented show of support by Hollywood for Israel. Not only does the list of signatories to our statement keep growing, their voice is being picked up by national, as well as international, press," said CCFP director Lana Melman.
But not all of Hollywood is on board. During Israel's Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, a number of celebrities, including Penelope Cruz and husband Javier Bardem, condemned Israel for its handling of conflict, with Cruz and Bardem even accusing Israel of genocide. They subsequently retracted their signatures from that petition.

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