From Harry's Place comes the infuriating news that the Jerusalem Quartet concert in Edinburgh was interrupted repeatedly by hecklers led by Mick Napier, head of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign. (Read here and here and here. My earlier piece on the protest plans can be read here.)
Napier justifies his actions by portraying the Quartet as Israeli agents when traveling overseas and as overzealous IDF soldiers who "put down their rifles (to) hold violins" when in Israel. (Read here.) Neither is true. In fact, three of the four members of the Jerusalem Quartet participate in a joint Palestinian - Israeli orchestra founded by Edward Said and Daniel Barenboim, and sponsored by the Barenboim-Said Foundation. This orchestra, called the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, exists to foster artistic cooperation between Israelis and Palestinians.
Napier and his cohorts deliberately spread distortions and lies to encourage those who would disrupt concerts, deny freedom of expression and stifle attempts to foster international cooperation. What the world needs more of is precisely what Napier acts against. May he continue to fail in his mission, only, one hopes, more quietly.