German rapper Bushido has been accused of calling for the destruction of Israel because he changed his Twitter avatar to an outline map of historic Palestine with the colors of the Palestinian flag and the words “Free Palestine.”
“This map image does not serve peace, but sows hatred. Bushido must immediately remove this from his Twitter page, otherwise he can no longer serve as an example of successful integration,” German Federal Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich demanded in a statement to Bild am Sonntag.
In 2011, Bushido won a “Bambi” award as a role model for “integration,” although the rapper has previously been the subject of controversy, drawing accusations that he has produced homophobic and misogynist lyrics.
“The message of the image is clear: a two-state solution with Israel and a Palestinian state existing in peace is not acceptable,” alleged an overwrought article in Süddeutsche Zeitung. “There is no room for a Jewish state.”
“It is scandalous that a German musician who is so accomplished should question the existence of Israel in this way,” Ruprecht Polenz, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party and chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the German parliament told the newspaper.
Zionist organizations have jumped on the bandwagon. Drawing attention to Bushido’s ancestry, the World Jewish Congress issued a statement titled “German rapper wipes Israel off the map”:
Bushido, who was born as Anis Mohamed Youssef Ferchichi to a Tunisian father and a German mother, has more than 285,000 followers on Twitter. He has not explained what he meant by posting the map, which is used as propaganda by Hamas and other extremist Palestinian organizations who deny Israel’s right to exist.
Many Zionists have long held that for Palestinians to merely recall the historic fact that their country was unified and that they lived in all parts of it before the 1947-48 Zionist ethnic cleansing and violent partition is illegitimate and hateful.
Any sort of criticism of Israel has been frequently silenced in Germany by reference to the country’s crimes during the Second World War, assisted by many complicit European authorities, whose motivation was to exterminate European Jews.
So it is sadly no surprise that Israel’s actual and ongoing efforts to erase Palestinians from their land – not merely from maps – through relentless colonization of occupied territories and racist laws to “Judaize” the whole country – have rarely caused as much outrage in Germany as Bushido’s Twitter avatar.
Indeed, despite Israel’s flagrant and accelerating efforts to steal as much land as possible in violation of international law, the German government continues to be a staunch ally of Israel, helping to make the Middle East a more dangerous place by providing nuclear-missile capable submarines to Israel.
The only message Israel can take from German complicity and irresponsibility is one of encouragement and support to commit more war crimes against Palestinians and others.
But German politicians, it seems, only find their courage when a rapper changes his Twitter avatar.