The Guardian DECEMBER 12, 2017 - by Brian Eno & others


Artists and performers including Julie Christie, Peter Gabriel, Aki Kaurismaki, Mark Ruffalo and Tilda Swinton deplore Trump's disregard for international law

You report (December 10) President Macron's comment that recent US moves on the status of Jerusalem are a threat to peace. They are much more than that. In recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital, Donald Trump seeks to achieve through a declaration what Israel has been trying to do for fifty years through force of arms: to erase Palestinians, as a political and cultural presence, from the life of their own city. The Palestinian people of Jerusalem are already subject to municipal discrimination at every level, and a creeping process of ethnic cleansing.

In addition to the continuing policy of house demolitions, in the last fifteen years at least thirty-five Palestinian public institutions and NGOs in occupied East Jerusalem have been permanently or temporarily closed by the occupying forces.

Cultural institutions have been a particular target. At the same time, Israeli authorities and entrepreneurs have spent millions in clearing Palestinian neighbourhoods to create "heritage" projects that promote a myth of mono-ethnic urban identity, said to stretch back three thousand years.

We reject Trump's collusion with such racist manipulation and his disregard for international law. We deplore his readiness to crown the Israeli military conquest of East Jerusalem and his indifference to Palestinian rights. As artists and as citizens, we challenge the ignorance and inhumanity of these policies, and celebrate the resilience of Palestinians living under occupation.

Khalid Abdalla, actor / Tunde Adebimpe, musician / Peter Ahrends, architect Hanan Al-Shaykh, writer / Tayo Aluko, actor, playwright / Frankie Armstrong, musician / Jonathan Arndell, architect / Conrad Atkinson, visual artist / Phyllida Barlow, visual artist / Roy Battersby, film director / Sarah Beddington, visual artist / Yves Berger, painter / Nicholas Blincoe, writer / Nick Broomfield, film director / David Calder, actor / Julie Christie, actor / Caryl Churchill, playwright / Norma Cohen, actor, writer / Molly Crabapple, writer, artist / Darren Cullen, artist / Michael Cunningham, writer / Selma Dabbagh, writer / William Dalrymple, writer, historian / Michael Darlow, director / Angela Davis, writer / Dror Dayan, filmmaker / April de Angelis, playwright / Andy de la Tour, actor / Ivor Dembina, comedian / Olof Dreijer, musician / Zillah Eisenstein, author / Sally El Hosaini, screenwriter, director / Brian Eno, musician / Eve Ensler, playwright / Samir Eskanda, musician / Jodie Evans, author, producer / Annie Firbank, actor / Peter Gabriel, musician / Tom Gilroy, actor, director / Orlando Gough, composer / Stephanos Gouvianakis, DJ / Douglas Hart, musician, director / Mona Hatoum, visual artist / Rachel Holmes, writer / Ian Ilavsky, label co-founder / Aki Kaurismaki, film director / John Keane, visual artist / Peter Kennard, artist / Al Kennedy, writer / Nancy Kricorian, writer / Hari Kunzru, writer / Paul Laverty, screenwriter / James Lecesne, actor / Mike Leigh, writer, director / Tom Leonard, poet / Les Levidow, violinist / Ken Loach, film director / Carmen Lobue, actor / Liz Lochhead, poet, playwright / Billy Lunn, musician / Charlotte Marionneau, musician / Kika Markham, actor / Francesca Martinez, comedian, actor / Ahmed Masoud, writer, director / Emel Mathlouthi, musician / Mark Matousek, writer / Julian Maynard Smith, artist, director / JD Meatyard, musician / Pauline Melville, writer, actor / Simon Milner, musician / Thurston Moore, musician / Tom Morello, musician / Rosalind Nashashibi, artist / Harry Newman, actor / Christopher Norris, philosopher, writer / Andrew O'Hagan, writer / Eugene O'Hare, actor / Maxine Peake, actor / Tonya Pinkins, actor / Vijay Prashad, writer / John Robb, musician, writer / Michael Rosen, poet / Mark Ruffalo, actor / Kareem Samara, musician / Lias Saoudi, musician / Ian Saville, magician / James Schamus, screenwriter, producer, director / Nick Seymour, musician / Nabil Shaban, actor, writer / Khaldoun Shami, filmmaker / Yasmin Shariff, architect / Sheikh, band / Kevin Shields, musician / Gillian Slovo, writer / John Smith, visual artist / Ahdaf Soueif, writer / Juliet Stevenson, actor / Tilda Swinton, actor / Yanis Varoufakis, author / Marina Warner, writer / Roger Waters, musician / Vivienne Westwood, designer / whenyoung, band / Don Wilkie, label co-founder / Susan Wooldridge, actor, writer / Robert Wyatt, musician

Peter Gabriel:

Jerusalem must encompass the hopes and dreams of all its peoples and religions, not just those with the most political, economic and military power.

Trump wants to deliver something for those that funded him, but this 'gift of gifts' will further encourage an Israeli government that has overseen and encouraged terrible suffering, the theft of yet more Palestinian land through illegal settlements and a very cynical rejection of the "Two State Solution".

I hope these protests will trigger a reaction around the world to condemn all the human rights abuses inflicted on the Palestinian people by the Israeli government and by the occupation, and lead to active international support for all those inside and outside Israel working for a just and fair peace and an independent Palestinian state - largely along the previously agreed '67 lines.

"Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding." - Albert Einstein