Activism and BDS Beat 23 January 2014
The international development charity Oxfam has publicly admonished Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson over her new and highly controversial role as spokesperson for the Israeli occupation profiteering firm SodaStream.
“We are proud of our relationship with Scarlett Johansson who has worked with Oxfam since 2005 to support Oxfam’s mission to end poverty and injustice,” the charity says in a statement.
“As an Oxfam Global Ambassador, she has travelled to India, Sri Lanka and Kenya to highlight the impact of traumatic disasters and chronic poverty, and she has helped to raise critical funds for life-saving and poverty-fighting work around the world. We deeply value her support.”
But, the statement, adds, “Oxfam believes that businesses that operate in settlements further the ongoing poverty and denial of rights of the Palestinian communities that we work to support. Oxfam is opposed to all trade from Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law.”
“We have made our concerns known to Ms Johansson and we are now engaged in a dialogue on these important issues.”
In the UK, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign is urging people to contact Oxfam to call for Johansson “to immediately end her contract with Sodastream or to cut ties with her following her signing up with Sodastream.”
The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation has issued a similar action alert aimed at Oxfam America.
It is still unclear whether Oxfam will eventually drop Johansson – following a 2009 precedent with Hollywood actress Kristin Davis – or whether the charity will convince Johansson to drop her lucrative contract with SodaStream.
Clearly it would be preferable if Johansson would learn the lesson and walk away from SodaStream. Either way, it is now apparent that no matter how much money you get, doing business with firms that exploit Palestinian workers and profit from Israeli crimes carries, at least, a mounting reputational cost.
- Scarlett Johansson
- Israeli settlements
- US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
- Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Oxfam must dump Johansson
Permalink Philippa replied on
Scarlett Johansson is not only beautiful, but also intelligent. Ich habe es nicht gewusst, the best claim she could make at this point, reputation-wise, is simply not good enough, and completely implausible. She must have googled this company before becoming its spokesperson. And apparently, she didn't care. Good looks, a good brain, but no soul or ethics. I only hope Oxfam does not blemish its own reputation by keeping her on.
Permalink desertson replied on
It's tough, but the hitherto excellent and respected Oxfam must now be boycotted and not given donations. Oxfam uses a "tagline" as its mission statement and this must now be amended to "Oxfam works with others to maximise profits from Palestinian suffering".
Will OXFACM drop Scarlett Johansson?
Permalink Anonymous replied on
Yes, they will.
Is it really smartness?
Permalink Artemis replied on
Is it really smart to advertise for a company that puts the fizz in water? It is like selling your soul to give your face or name to most companies and I have very little respect for actors who do so, even when they have greedy agents.
I imagine Sodastream knew full well what it was doing when it asked Scarlett Johannson. A beautiful, famous Jewish girl will lend them the sheen of a decent company and that is exactly what they are not. In fact, she is being exploited and her agents should be aware of this, even if she is not. Or maybe they are one of the big Hollywood business Zionist supporters?
Oxfam / SodaStream
Permalink wobject replied on
ha ha ha
Permalink Philippa replied on
You forgot the fangs!
It's funny how good looks can also do that: mutate into the creepy and monstrous.
Cheaper alternative to Sodastream
Permalink Chip Young replied on
Now would be a good time to popularize a much cheaper way of getting seltzer. You get the "Carbonator" attachment at Amazon, plus the hose and ball lock that conveniently shows up as "frequently bought together." And you'll need a regulator and a CO2 tank. Then you take a large soda bottle of chilled water, screw on the Carbonator, and shake. Fun. The kids fight over who gets to shake. Refill the CO2 tank for a song once a year at a welding supply shop.
Learn a lesson? Congrats
Permalink Jackie replied on
Learn a lesson? Congrats OXFAM done donating to you. Just another rotten political organization operating under the guise of a charity.
Permalink maxine Fookson replied on
Has Scarlett Johansson ever visited the West Bank, does anyone know? If not--she needs to go there and see that her statement, which is clearly SodaStream propaganda, is blatantly untrue. I believe she talked about "democratic and fair working conditions" and that these types of businesses are models of peace initiatives. She needs to: 1. Go see the truth and talk to underpaid SS workers who have NO other options due to the occupation strangling the Palestinian economy; 2. See the disparity between Palestinian life and the lifestyle of the settlers (water use, disregard for the environment by the settlers); 3. Then she needs a history class on South Africa under Apartheid--the exact types of sub-standard and horrible working conditions there. She needs to visit to get her facts straight.
Have you visited the Sodastream factory
Permalink tourist replied on
Just out of curiosity.. are you speaking from experience?
As an outsider, seems like the BDS movement has simply given Sodastream the much desired publicity.. and they did it for free.