ADL Says Bomb Imagery In Roger Waters' "The Wall" Tour Calls Up Anti-Semitic Stereotypes

New York, NY, September 27, 2010 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today criticized rock music icon Roger Waters for using imagery long associated with stereotypes about Jews and money as part of a segment of his 2010-2011 "The Wall Live" Tour that takes aim at Israel's West Bank security fence.

During his performances of "Goodbye Blue Sky," an animated scene projects images of planes dropping bombs in the shape of Jewish Stars of David followed by dollar signs, according to an interview in the September 30 issue of Rolling Stone.

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

It is outrageous that Roger Waters has chosen to use the juxtaposition of a Jewish Star of David with the symbol of dollar signs. While he insists that his intent was to criticize Israel's West Bank security fence, the use of such imagery in a concert setting seems to leave the message open to interpretation, and the meaning could easily be misunderstood as a comment about Jews and money.

Of course Waters has every right to express his political views about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through his music and stagecraft. However, the images he has chosen, when put together in the same sequence, cross a line into anti-Semitism.

We wish that Waters had chosen some other way to convey his political views without playing into and dredging up the worst age-old anti-Semitic stereotype about Jews and their supposed obsession with making money.

According to reports, the sequence of the symbols in "The Wall Show" concert video has been changed so that the dollar signs are no longer followed by the Star of David imagery.

The change followed an open letter from ADL to Roger Waters.

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

More from this Section