Scarlett brave and beautiful

by Heather Robinson


Although I’m a few weeks late, I wanted to mention that actress Scarlett Johansson deserves praise for honoring her contract with Israeli home carbonation company SodaStream. (To recap: she appeared in a halftime advertisement for the company during the SuperBowl, despite being pressured by the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement to step down as a rep for the company).

BDS objects to the location of SodaStream’s plant in Mishor Adumim industrial park, which is in the West Bank, even though the company is progressive and perfectly willing, according to its owner, to remain, pay taxes and function, if possible, within a Palestinian state if such could be peacefully established. Also, apparently the Palestinian workers at the company don’t want to lose their jobs and applauded recently when Johansson’s name was mentioned.

Having traveled to the West Bank at one time as the guest of Daniel Lubetzky, a food entrepreneur who works with both Israelis and Palestinians there, my impression is that the only hope for eventual peace in this region lies with ordinary people. When people work together day to day, rely on each other, and are not receiving daily incitement to hate, there are possibilities that ancient hatreds can give way to realpolitik and a desire to live peacefully and prosper. My personal suspicion is that proponents of BDS and reflexive anti-Israel agitators fear this: the real, practical hope for peaceful co-existence, because their real agenda is to de-legitimize Israel, starting with the settlements – but not stopping there.

At any rate, Johansson made it clear with her statement of “fundamental disagreement” with the human rights nonprofit Oxfam for their demand that she break her contract that this was not just a financial decision but also a matter of principle.

Beautiful Scarlett, I hope this won’t cost you your career.

It will certainly win you no popularity contests in Hollywood.



This entry was written by and posted on February 17, 2014 at 7:47 pm and filed under Blog.