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October 23, 2014 / 29 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Scarlett Johansson’

Scarlett Johansson: I’m Called ‘New Face of Apartheid’

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Scarlett Johansson told Vanity Fair magazine that anti-Semitism is behind condemnation of her sponsoring Israeli-made SodaStream products.

In a wide-ranging interview that focused mainly on Hollywoody subjects, gossip and social media, she was asked about her rejecting criticism for signing up as ambassador for SodaStream which runs a factory in the Jewish city of Maaleh Adumim in the Judean desert, where the Palestinian Authority imagines it will rule one day.

“[I'm being called] the new face of apartheid. There’s a lot of anti-Semitism out there,” she commented.

Johansson, who is Jewish, also was ambassador for Oxfam, but when the group demanded she break her ties with SodaStream, she stood up and said that the Israeli-based company does more for peace than anyone else by employing Palestinian Authority Arabs at equal wages with Israel.

BDS has unsuccessfully campaigned for a universal boycott of SodaStream, which gives people the opportunity to make soda in their own homes and add flavors instead of buying bottle carbonated drinks.

Johansson has been a lead punch in the stomach of the Boycott Israel crowd, which is not used to an apolitical figure, especially one from Hollywood, proving to the world that the anti-Zionist case is null and void.

Will BDS Movement Boycott Whirlpool over Ties with SodaStream?

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

KitchenAid, a subsidiary of the giant Whirlpool appliance conglomerate, has announced it is working with the Boycott Israel-targeted SodaStream company by introducing its own countertop soda maker using SodaStream’s flavors.

That should make the BDS Movement bubble over with anger at KitchenAid’s hooking up with a company that exploits Palestinian Authority worked by employing them at five times the wages they could be making if they worked for their brethren.

SodaStream’s sin, in the eyes of the Boycott Israel squad, is operating a factory in the forbidden Occupied West Bank, otherwise known as the Mishor Adumim industrial area of the city of Maaleh Adumim, Israel.

SodaStream has become more of a household name thanks to its commercials that have run for two consecutive years during the Super Bowl break and more recently because of its hiring actress Scarlett Johansson as its world ambassador. Thanks to the Boycott Israel’s attempt to place an international embargo on SodaStream as well as Scarlett’s films, SodaStream won even more publicity.

The BDS crowd went after the lady for the alleged hypocrisy of promoting both SodaStream and Oxfam, one of the lovers of anti-Israel campaigns. Scarlett came out swinging for SodaStream and ditched Oxfam, ignoring charges that she did so only for the money, which she hardly is lacking. It never crossed the minds of the Israel haters that maybe, just maybe, she acted out of principle and not principal.

One way or the other, KitchenAid now has stepped up to the plate. Like any good corporation, it is interested in principal and certainly took into account that by teaming up with SodaStream it and its parent company Whirlpool could face the same boycott campaign that tried to bring SodaStream to its knees.

BDS took credit for the recent sharp drop in SodaStream’s stock, without noting that the shares sank because of a warning that earnings would not be up to snuff last quarter. Boycott Israel did not take the credit for the recent rise in the price of SodaStream shares after the actual earnings weren’t so bad after all.

So let’s see the BDS Movement do without KitchenAid mixers and blenders and announce a worldwide boycott on Whirlpool refrigerators and freezers until KitchenAid stops helping SodaStream markets its homemade sodas.

And coffee makers.

The Boycott Israel folks can get also get rid of their Maytag washing machines, their driers, Whirlpool BBQ grills, microwave ovens and trash compactors.

Whirlpool is a corporate giant, with nearly $19 billion sales last year, more than 35 times more than SodaStream’s revenues, so get going, BDS.

Whirlpool’s subsidiary KitchenAid was all bubbly over the new arrangement with SodaStream. “We are excited to expand our KitchenAid family of products and enter the growing category of home carbonation,” said David Elliott, general manager of KitchenAid small appliances. “Working with SodaStream brings together their best-in-class technology with our stylish design signature to offer a premium product for our consumers worldwide.

Daniel Birnbaum, CEO of SodaStream, chimed in and said, “KitchenAid is an iconic, global brand and we welcome them to the SodaStream revolution. Our unique platform will enable KitchenAid to provide its large and loyal consumer base with the many benefits of home carbonation. We look forward to leveraging the combined strengths of our two brands to advance the category and reach an even broader global audience.”

This Year’s Esther-Award Goes To…

Sunday, March 16th, 2014

It is easy to spot Haman in today’s world. The Iranian Mullah’s with their destroy-Israel infatuation, a few European NGOs who back killers with the slogan of human rights, a PA which teaches its children to hate Jews and to detest life, to name a few…

But who is this year’s Esther?

My vote is with Scarlett Johansson. Scarlett, a world renowned actress, and hidden Esther-like Jew, stood up against EU and UN-types when she said goodbye to Oxfam in favor of the Israeli SodaStream. There was an element of a Purim-like turn around, when Oxfam tried to pressure Scarlett to drop SodaSteram, but this time, it was they who got the cut.

Why did she do it? She could not bring herself to project the Oxfam narrative about Arab oppression because she had seen the factories which employ satisfied Arabs, and hearing from them directly she understood what it would mean to lose their jobs in the name of “liberation.”

In her own words she explained that, “SodaStream is a company that is not only committed to the environment but to building a bridge to peace between Israel and Palestine, supporting neighbors working alongside each other, receiving equal pay, equal benefits and equal rights. That is what is happening in their Ma’aleh Adumim factory every working day.” She defined Israel as the facilitator of normalcy while undermining the Israel-is–to-blame for everything account.

But what good could come to Scarlett by standing up for truth? On the face of it, very little. She could have gone on happily making movies without having to face the ire of bad guys, who no doubt, have the ability to threaten physical violence as well. Just stay out of it, its not your fight, why do you, a Hollywood starlet, need this Middle East headache?

And that is exactly why Scarlett wins the Esther Award – she did not need this headache, but still she used her position to publicly shame and expose the BDSers. As Mordechai said, “And who knows if for this time you were made queen?”

However, Scarlett’s actions did much more then defend the Jewish State. By said no to the narrative that Oxfam was drawing about Israel, she actually defended the world from accepting a general warped outlook which seeks to portray evil as good and good as evil. In Nazi Germany, it began by vilifying the Jew and extolling the Nazi party. Today, it begins by painting the oppressive Jihadists as freedom fighters, and Israel, the one shining light of hope for humanity in the Middle East, as the most evil force in the region. Experience shows that once these lies are accepted, the world is thrown into chaos and millions can die.

Scarlett bravely said no, and thereby stopped the lies from passing through her. Like Esther, she put herself on the line for truth, and like Mordechai, she would not bow down and give homage to the lies. And while it may have not seem like much, sometimes, just a sliver of courage is enough to put the bullies down, give the world another chance, and encourage a new generation to fight on for truth.

Happy Purim

Netanyahu Praises Scarlett Johansson in AIPAC Speech

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

In his speech at the 2014 American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference on Tuesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Jewish-American actress Scarlett Johansson for her decision to continue representing Israeli carbonated beverage company SodaStream, which is located across the Green line and employs hundreds of Palestinians.

Johansson stepped down as a global ambassador for the human rights group Oxfam International, which had criticized her for serving as pitch woman for SodaStream.

“Everyone should know what the letters B-D-S really stand for: bigotry, dishonesty, and shame. And those who oppose BDS, like Scarlett Johansson, they should be applauded,” Netanyahu said. Channeling the 1939 movie “Gone with the Wind,” the prime minister said, “Scarlett, I have one thing to say to you: Frankly, my dear, I DO give a damn.”

Also on Tuesday, Hollywood sources reported that Johansson is expecting her first child with her fiancé, Romain Dauriac.

Canadian Minister ’Thanks Oxfam’ and Buys SodaStream Machine

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

Canada’s Employment minister Jason Kenney has countered the BDS ‘Boycott SodaStream” campaign by buying one of the company’s soda-making machines and crediting Oxfam for the idea.

Oxfam has dumped Scarlett Johansson as an ambassador because she signed up to promote SodaStream whose 20 factories around the world include one in the industrial area of Maaleh Adumim, located in Greater Israel, Post-1967 Israel, or the Occupied Territories, depending on your political point of view.

BDS has been promoting the boycott, but its vocal protests have caused rumbles that are turning into an avalanche of positive publicity for SodaStream and Israel because of the company’s policy of equal opportunity for Palestinian Authority Arabs.

Instead of a boycott, there is “buy-cott,” and Keeney tweeted on Monday, “Bought a nice @SodaStream unit at the @HudsonsBayCo. Thanks to @Oxfam for the tip. #Buycott #BDSfail #GoScarJo”

Kenney said on Canadian television, “I’ve given money to Oxfam in the past because I thought they were there to help poor people, not to marginalize Israelis and make Palestinians unemployed.” He added that “all the nutters at Oxfam” also marginalize “Palestinian people” who get paid four times more at SodaStream than they would earn working for factories run by Palestinian Authority Arabs.

Kenney also had some choice words for leftist groups’ “anti-Israel obsession” while they while they ignore countries such as Iran, which executes political dissidents and homosexuals.

Roger Waters Rips Scarlett Johansson, Neil Young over Israel

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Roger Waters assailed actress Scarlett Johansson for working with SodaStream and musician Neil Young for his planned performance in Israel.

In a Facebook post on Saturday, the former Pink Floyd front man said he was making a public plea to Johansson and Young after writing to them privately in recent days.

Waters has publicly called for boycotts against Israel and made personal pleas to artists not to perform in Israel. Young is scheduled to perform in Israel in July.

Johansson last week ended her relationship with the human rights group Oxfam following a protracted debate over her role as spokeswoman for the Israeli company SodaStream, which has a factory in the West Bank. The factory employs Israeli and Palestinian workers.

In his public letter, Waters said Johansson’s “choice of Soda Stream over Oxfam” is  “an act of intellectual, political, and civil about face, that we, all those of us who care about the downtrodden, the oppressed, the occupied, the second class, will find it hard to rationalize.”

The letter cites alleged human rights abuses by Israel against the Bedouin living in southern Israel and poses several questions about how Palestinians live under Israeli rule in the West Bank.

He concludes his letter, which mostly is directed at Johansson, by saying, “Scarlett, you are undeniably cute, but if you think SodaStream is building bridges towards peace you are also undeniably not paying attention.”

How Scarlett Helped the Palestinians: the hypocrisy of Oxfam

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

I was the president of my university’s chapter of Oxfam during my senior year of college. That year, together with other members, we organized a large, university-wide Hunger Banquet. The idea is simple, clever, and powerful: invite first-world college students interested in learning more about world hunger to a banquet. Then, randomly separate them into three groups, based on actual statistics about world hunger. Those from “rich countries”— about 15 people—sat at tables and received a three- course meal, with delicious, untouched food left over for about 30 more people. Those from “middle income countries” –around 30 people, received rice and beans, and had to sit on chairs without tables as they ate. Those from “poor countries,” about 50 people, had to sit on the floor and received only a cupful of rice for dinner. As the students ate their respective dinners and contemplated this unfair arrangement, I gave a talk about hunger around the world. The “first-world” students gazed sorrowfully at their hungry friends sitting on the floor, and were frustrated by the fact that they were not allowed to share the extra food with them. The event was eye-opening for my fellow students, and afterward, many donated money to Oxfam to help alleviate world hunger. I regret hosting that event.

I regret my involvement with Oxfam during my time in college.

Because I realized—too late— that Oxfam chooses to be blind and hypocritical. By attacking Soda Stream, a company that actually lifts the Palestinian people out of poverty by providing them with well-paying jobs close to their homes, they are inflicting poverty on the very people they claim to help. Even when Palestinian workers speak out against the boycott, their entreaties fall on deaf, self-righteous ears.

Scarlett Johansson was right to cut ties with Oxfam because the organization is morally bankrupt. If they truly cared about the Palestinians in the West Bank, they would realize that the highest form of charity is to provide a person with gainful employment, not to facilitate handouts to corrupt leaders with Mercedes-Benz addictions. Billions of dollars in aid to the Palestinian Authority do not reach the Palestinian people. The CEO of SodaStream, Daniel Birnbaum, has said that he remains committed to the Palestinian workers and will not “throw them to the street,” but also admitted that the West Bank factory has been “a pain.” Thankfully, he cares enough to keep his business in the West Bank, for now. But what happens if the media pressure and boycott cause the company too great a loss? Who could fault them for moving the factory somewhere else? If that happens, Oxfam will be to blame for harming hard-working Palestinians who, after decades of conflict, just want a chance at a stable life and a future for their families.

In fact, raising the economic level of the Palestinian people will lead to more stability and, as a result, exactly what organizations like Oxfam claim to want for the developing world—better education, accountable leadership, and a peaceful state that continues to do business with Israel in a cooperative, productive way.

So don’t worry, Scarlett. Don’t feel guilty. You did the right thing. And I hope that Oxfam learns its lesson.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/how-scarlett-helped-the-palestinians-the-hypocrisy-of-oxfam/2014/02/03/

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