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April 21, 2014 / 21 Nisan, 5774
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Israel Gives up ‘HaTikvah’ Anthem for the Sake of Peres’ Peace

Israel has made another concession, without even being asked. The PA anthem was sung in Bethlehem for the Barcelona soccer team during its Peres-sponsored visit, but HaTikvah was ditched in Tel Aviv.

Barcelona soccer star Lionel Messi heard the Palestinian Authority national anthem in Bethlehem. Singing the HaTikvah anthem in Tel Aviv was ditched, but President Peres shakes hands - for peace

Barcelona soccer star Lionel Messi heard the Palestinian Authority national anthem in Bethlehem. Singing the HaTikvah anthem in Tel Aviv was ditched, but President Peres shakes hands - for peace
Photo Credit: Flash 90

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Israel set itself up for humiliation last week by staging a visit of the Barcelona soccer team at Tel Aviv’s Bloomfield stadium without the playing of the HaTikvah national anthem.

The visit was headlined around the world as another effort by the Peres Peace Center to try to convince itself that the Palestinian Authority really wants co-existence with Israel. The soccer team also played in Bethlehem, where the Palestinian Authority anthem was sung, according to the Hebrew-language Yediot Acharonot  newspaper.

Obviously, the Israeli anthem would be sung in Tel Aviv, Israel’s capital according to the entire world outside of Israel, but it was not so obvious to the office of President Shimon Peres and the Foreign  Ministry.

Before the game in Tel Aviv, a meeting was held at the stadium, where representatives from other governments said that if the Israeli anthem were to played, then the same honor would have to be extended to the Palestinian Authority , Spain and an autonomous community of Spain, with the official status of a nationality.

“After discussions with the production team and the Foreign Ministry it was said that said it would be unpleasant,” senior officials from the office of President Peres reasoned. After all, playing four anthems would drag things out a bit, so they got by with playing only the Catalan anthem.

But why didn’t the same reasoning apply when the Barcelona team played in Bethlehem?

No one really had an answer for that, but it can be assumed that the Palestinian Authority would have threatened to cancel the soccer team’s visit if anyone had dared even mentioning the word HaTikvah.

Israel, of course, is always ready to make peace, and who needs a Zionist anthem anyway? That would only contradict  chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s terms for peace.

So even though organizers had agreed for it to be sung in Tel Aviv and even though singer David D’or was to sing HaTikvah, the announcement arrived that that it was cancelled.

Education Minister Shai Piron, of the Yesh Atid party, was not so condescending and announced that his ministry would not pay its share of 1 million shekels to finance the visit.

“If there is someone whose feelings are hurt hearing the Israeli national anthem, then they shouldn’t come at all,” ministry officials told the newspaper. “It is first-class chutzpah to come to the heart of Tel Aviv and then ask us not to play our anthem. And it is even a greater audacity by the organizers and the people of the Peres Center that they lowered their heads and agreed to it. It’s a scandal that would not have  passed quietly in  any civilized country. “

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About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.

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54 Responses to “Israel Gives up ‘HaTikvah’ Anthem for the Sake of Peres’ Peace”

  1. Cody Flecker says:

    Only in Israel do the people bend over backwards to appease the terrorists. Giving up murderers for the sake of a non existent peace is absolutely absurd. Then again, this is Israel, a land of absurdities.

  2. Lynne Marton says:

    Just when I think I have heard it all….. This is the height of ridiculous! For HaTikvah not to be played at an international sporting event to appease the palestinians? WHAT ARE THEY THINKING? THEY AREN'T THINKING! The terrorists are eroding the very heart of Israel and those organizers and Peres Center are allowing it! Get rid of Peres – he's long past his expiry date. He'd give up everything in the delusion that it would bring about "Shalom" – which it never will!

  3. Henna du Plessis says:

    I say it every time. I detest this horrible old man. He has no pride. I wish he would got and live somewhere else. He is, and always be, an idiot. I really think he has something wrong in the head. I can not bear to see him.

  4. Hashem told us to bow for no man. was this not bowing. Was this not self denuding of our Lands. mr. peres has something yet to learn about his existence. tefillah for one and Torah for another. we are not to trade off our lands. we have been told what happens and saw this for our selves with gaza.

  5. Peres is an old relic from the times of Mapay and Rafi the Ben Gurion led Workers/socialist parties. Socialism is in bankruptcy in parts of the world and on crutches elsewhere. Peres, go to Sde Boker.

  6. Alan Cornet says:

    It is far better to stand up for what you believe in then to crawl and grovel.
    Respect is a two way street. Peace will come when the Arabs and Muslims.
    finally come to understand, comprehend, and recognize that Israel is A JEWISH state and will not go away. It is quite important that NO further concessions be made by Israel until actual steps are taken by the Muslim world.

  7. sad. terrible. and just plain crazy.

  8. Benny Gamal says:

    Naftali Hertz Imber, the composer of the words to HaTikva, of blessed memory, is geshrying in his grave and I, along with any committed Jew is geshrying as well.



  11. It never has and it never will. There is no "appeasment"; whatever you give them they will always ask yet another thing. Those people responsible for this kind of stuff does not want "peace with" your country-they want your country with you no longer in it. God always has be Pro-Israel; hold you ground and God bless you all.

  12. I agree with you completely Alan!

  13. Alan Kardon says:

    Would the United States not play the National Anthem to appease some group to appease terrorists? I think not. What does Spain have to do with the local politics? Would Spain not play its National Anthem? I think Peres is either brain dead or a traitor. Maybe both.

  14. No, Cody, it is not the land of absurdities, it is the land of God's chosen people and will one day be the center of Heaven. God has Israel's back-Mr Perez would know that if he believed holy scripture.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Thomas Jefferson wondered if he should sign a peace treaty with Muslims in 1805. After reading the Koran he understood they could not be trusted. He sent Marines instead.
    Muslims have no intention of being peaceful until all Jews are dead. Wake up!

  16. Noah Hassid says:


  17. That really boggles my mind – Why is Israel groveling?

  18. Carol Applbaum says:

    Shame on Mr. Peres! What is it about self respect that he doesn't get? If we don't respect ourselves, then we can't expect anyone else to, either.
    Has he learned nothing in the past 90 years? This decision is a total embarrassment – to himself and to the country he supposedly represents.

  19. Perez must out he is a senil, what a kind of goverment is now in Israel, are they selling the country?, to whom?, US?, EU?, Saudi Arabia?, islamic brotherhood?

  20. Anonymous says:

    I fully agree – many in Israel have no respect for where they came from, for their heritage, and for themselves. They have not learned the old saying " fool me once – shame on you; fool me twice – shame on me". What can one say when they are constantly allowing themselves to be fooled.

  21. Marsha Roth says:

    I agree with every comment posted here. Mr. Gaddykmgaddi's post made me want to repeat what he said, "Hashem told us to bow for no man. was this not bowing. Was this not self denuding of our Lands. mr. peres has something yet to learn about his existence. tefillah for one and Torah for another. we are not to trade off our lands. we have been told what happens and saw this for our selves with gaza." Thank you Mr. Gaddykmgaddi.

  22. John Whitbread says:

    Every one of these 'gestures' is taken as confirmation to those that Israel does not even believe in her own legitimacy as a state. It is an act of pure insanity. If someone cannot stand to hear the age old message of the Jewish hope that has burnt within the heart of Jews for millenia, then that is their problem. Play it TWICE AS LOUD and if they don't like the first one, PLAY IT AGAIN!

  23. Cathy Sherman says:

    Peres does not represent Israel's Jews. He's not elected, and he should be retired. For someone whose role isn't supposed to carry much power, he seems to be in the news every day doing something despicable to Jewish life.

  24. Subject: RABBI ROSENBERG.

    March 07, 2013.

    I have resigned from the metuchen edison clegy association. I AM A PAST PRESIDENT. Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg

    HATIKVAH has been included in every service since I created interfaith holocaust services in 1974 with no objection. N0 ONE HAS EVER WALKED out, sat down OR OBJECTED until recently. With Israel and Jews being attacked throughout the world, I PERSONALLY will and have fought to keep it in. We are living in a world where anti-SEMITISM is rampant especially in Europe where JEWS ARE FLEEING IN MASS to Israel and other countries. Everyone is entitled to their OWN opinion , I stand by mine. Another Holocaust is on the horizon. A nuclear extremist muslim regime would like nothing better than the complete destruction of Israel and if you listen to Morsi all Jews should perish.
    I will be the keynote speaker at another Holocaust event that evening. I refuse to compromise my beliefs or allow the Hatikvah to be disgraced. I am taking my highway to what I believe in. Rabbi DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG

    —–Original Message—–
    From: chaimdov
    To: chaimdov.
    Sent: Wed, Jun 5, 2013 1:59 pm.
    Subject: Fwd: Good news from Muslim world.

    I THERERFORE ASK THESE LEADERS TO OBTAIN AN APOLOGY FOR ME.. I recently bowed out of the interfaith Holocaust service, because it was a custom to include Hatikvah at the end, but now some Christian groups object as they support the Palestinians and the Muslim Imams would either sit or leave during the Hatikvah. Perhaps interfaith Holocaust programs no longer make sense, at least to me. I do not need the stress of seeing disrespect being afforded to Israel and nor do I wish to compromise by leaving Hatikvah out. The interfaith Holocaust memorials started as well intentioned way for the Jewish people and other groups to pause and reflect on man’s capacity to perpetuate unbelievable cruelty against his fellow and to commiserate as a group and others, with the Jews and hopefully prevent this nightmare from reoccurring.Over the years it was understandably modified to include other victims of genocidal mass killings, though these mass killings were not really analogous, as the Nazis were obsessed at not just killing Jews as a competing group, but Hitler desired to eliminate our creed and it’s pervasive influence on humanity, particularly Christian doxy. As a result of Muslim participation and twisted liberalism, this is morphing into a twisted canard where Israel is being blamed for perpetuating ethnic killings against the Palestinians as the Jews were slaughtered by the Nazis. One can understand the Islamo-Nazis belief system with a quote from the Talmud. We do not see things as they are. We see them as we are. RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG, CHILD OF Holocaust survivors and a refugee born in a D.P. camp.

  25. Violet Helms says:

    Tel Aviv is not the capital of Israel, Jerusalem is. That might explain this quite well. I doubt this report , it is too ridiculous.

  26. Gary Dalin says:

    This what Dhimitude is all about. Make Jews bow to ever increasing demands. Put Jews in their place. Threaten to cancel their insincere tokens to appease and encourage Israel's Lefties who support Arab demands for unconditional surrender. It was a bad precident that should not be repeated.

  27. What a shame!
    Are not there enough patriotic, faithful and sober thinking Jews in Israel, to kick out that senile dementia stricken radical socialistic fool from the Government and not to allow him to have any influence on the life of Jewish people in Israel in all over the world?
    We had been instructed by our sages: "peace for peace", neither for our land, nor for our way of life, tradition, for our dignity.
    Did our leaders learn anything from the "Book of Life", from our History?

  28. Gary Dalin says:

    Better yet! Use pigskin soccer balls, only tell them afterwards.

  29. I wish this was a Purim joke but it's the wrong time of year. And what about all the Israeli fans? THEY should have risen and sung Hatikva with or without the approval of silly old men.

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