Roger WatersPink Floyd’s Roger Waters

The Zionist Left hates Roger Waters. I’m for him

Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters has an obsession with human rights abuses. Israel has an obsession with trampling Waters. I prefer his obsession. ■ Waters is anti-Zionist. His position re the Occupation, the Nakba, and the problematic nature of the Jewish state is, in essence, correct.

The Palestine Project
4 min readMay 29, 2023

--

By Rogel Alpher • Translated by Sol Salbe

Loathing of Roger Waters is the only common denominator of Kahanism and the Zionist Left, of the voters of Itamar Ben-Gvir and those of Meretz. And we are talking about an active common denominator, which is often reinforced and confirmed by yet another statement or act of the man, a common denominator that is interminably burning, like a warming and unifying tribal flame.

When it comes to Waters, the supporters of the “reform” and the opponents of the judicial coup refuse to be enemies. The entire Zionist social network is always eager to be shocked by him. This time because he appeared in a Nazi-like uniform and compared Anne Frank to Shireen Abu-Akleh. This is despite the fact that the fascist character was intended to convey an anti-fascist message and that in his animated movie about Frank, Israeli Ari Folman compared her to Syrian refugees. Waters has an obsession with human rights abuses. Israel has an obsession with trampling Waters. I prefer his obsession.

Waters is one of the most important artists of the second half of the 20th century. Between 1971 and 1981, Pink Floyd released five major albums, which had a huge impact on popular culture in general and British national identity in particular. Its greatness rested on two central pillars: David Gilmour’s solos, and Waters’ conceptual vision. The band’s cultural impact stems primarily from Waters. It’s up there with Dylan, Morrissey, Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen. In works such as Dogs, The Wall and Time, Waters captured the existential condition of humanity in its time, with supreme depth, intensity and precision. The band was deemed worthy of a display at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum thanks to Waters’ lyrics on such immortal songs as Wish You Were Here and Money.

In typical fashion for artists who find themselves bound together against their will for life, Waters and Gilmour (and his wife Polly Samson, a failed and jealous songwriter) loathe each other. The truth is that, on their own, they each never came close to the peaks they reached together. Gilmour’s iconic solos, almost all of which are etched in the collective memory of music fans, were created only in collaboration with Waters (who for his part hasn’t done anything interesting without Gilmour for more than 40 years), and since then he has recorded many forgotten solos. Unpleasant, for both of them.

Israel of course with “Team Gilmour”. Gilmour is probably in real life a nicer fellow than Waters, but he and his wife are wrong to accuse him of antisemitism. Their motives are tinged with resentment over the fact that without Waters by his side, Gilmour is not an important artist.

Waters is anti-Zionist. His position re the Occupation, the Nakba, and the problematic nature of the Jewish state is, in essence, correct. He transgresses here and there with exaggerations and inaccuracies, and Left-wing Zionists pounce on these petty sins as a source of great spoils. It’s a great opportunity to feel patriotic and wallow in the great and unifying and false Israeli narrative of justice and victimisation like pigs in mud. Occupying Israel deserves that inflatable pig featuring the Star of David that Waters uses in performances. His small sins are dwarfed by the sins of the Occupation. And yes, Israel deserves a boycott for the Occupation. And yes, it’s a crime also committed in the name of Israelis who love alternative rock concerts in Tel Aviv.

As far as Vladimir Putin is concerned, Waters is wrong. But I prefer his error, which stems from a healthy basic scepticism and a willingness to bravely swim against the current, to the automatic support of everything America says and does. He is right about the US conduct in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. Waters is a thinking person, who always challenges the discourse. I’m for him.

--

--