DiCaprio, Will Smith, Ye, 11 more celebrities connected to 'Israel'
There are many artists, activists, and celebrities that have links to the Israeli occupation despite the ideals of many clashing with those the Israeli occupation is based on, such as discrimination, violation of human rights, and overall violence.
The Palestinian cause has garnered much attention and support from many A-list celebrities over time, but just like any issue, no matter how righteous, opponents will arise, and in this case, the Israeli occupation has garnered the support of various A-listers and many renowned celebrities whose support propelled Israeli oppression against Palestinians and other peoples in the region.
Though several renowned figures were expected to have ties with the occupation, the support of many, due to their advocacy of pacifism, human rights, and many prominent issues, will come off as surprising.
Normalization with the Israeli occupation cannot go hand in hand with many causes these individuals have advocated, but it does with ideals certain individuals have pushed over the years.
Leonardo DiCaprio, a vocal climate change advocate and philanthropist, has been an avid investor in the occupied territories.
The Oscar-winning actor and A-list Hollywood star has contributed tremendous funds to Israeli firms, most recently Aleph Farms, a cultivated meat startup.
He also invested in tech firms, most notably social media company Mobli, which shut down a few years following DiCaprio's investment. The company had 23 million users at its peak and raised some $86 million before its operations were suspended.
Jennifer Lopez, a renowned artist that topped the charts in many countries around the world, went to occupied Palestine for a concert marking her 50th birthday.
Lopez, alongside her partner at the time, Alex Rodriguez, her 11-year-old twins, and Rodriguez's two daughters, toured the occupied territories, going to "Tel Aviv" and occupied Al-Quds.
The two-time Grammy nominee celebrated her visit on social media with her partner, ignoring the oppression Palestinians have been suffering at the hands of the occupation.
The visit sparked outrage and caused pro-Palestine and pro-BDS activists to condemn Lopez's visit, which was a reflection of her normalization with such an oppressive regime.
Will Smith, a renowned music artist and A-list Hollywood star, went to occupied Al-Quds as part of a visit to "Israel" with his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, in 2006 ahead of the Israeli war on Lebanon.
The four-time Grammy winner and one-time Oscar winner, with his wife, visited the Western Wall and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
He also went to the occupied Al-Quds in 2017 during his filming of Aladdin in Jordan.
Kanye West, a renowned music artist who received 75 Grammy nominations and won 24 of them, went twice to occupied Palestine in 2015, the first one was for a concert in Ramat Gan Stadium at the onset of the year and the second one was a few months later with his then-wife Kim Kardashian and their daughter North West to Al-Quds.
Helen Keller, a renowned US author, disability rights advocate, and political activist, went to "Israel" on a 15-day visit in 1952 as part of a tour on behalf of the American Foundation for the Blind.
"I leave Israel greatly impressed by everything that is being done here," Keller said at the conclusion of her visit.
Watch | The Israeli occupation forces assault a young Palestinian with Down syndrome, Mohammad Al-Ajlouni, in #SheikhJarrah Neighborhood.#Palestine #SaveSheikhJarrah pic.twitter.com/ON5lSYTUQM— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) February 21, 2022
Madonna, a renowned US musician and actress, performed at Eurovision 2019 in "Tel Aviv", occupied Palestine.
She had made several trips to "Israel" for several reasons, for family trips and concerts.
The seven-time Grammy winner had held several concerts in "Israel".
Helen Mirren, a British Oscar-winning actress, has been in "Israel" on several occasions, the first of which was after the 1967 war. She went to "Eilat" and spent time at the "Ha'on" Israeli settlement.
Mirren has also played the role of former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir in an upcoming movie about the premier.
Conan O'Brien, a US TV host, comedian, and producer, visited occupied Palestine in 2017, spending several days on the occupied territories.
He went to "Tel Aviv" and "Jaffa" and visited IOF soldier Gal Gadot at home.
Jerry Seinfeld, a comedian, went to occupied Palestine in 2007 to promote the Bee Movie, and he also performed stand-up comedy acts in 2015 and 2017.
He toured IOF locations in 2017, such as the Ramon Air Base in Al-Naqab and a training facility in "Efrat". Seinfeld also worked in an Israeli settlement on occupied Palestinian territories.
Frank Sinatra, a renowned singer-songwriter first visited "Israel" in 1962, performing in six occupied cities.
The nine-time Grammy winner also sang at the official "Israeli Independence Day" in "Tel Aviv", which is commemorated days after the 1948 Nakba, sitting beside Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion and IOF General Moshe Dayan.
He also visited occupied Palestine on several occasions, including on his 80th birthday, which he spent in "Eilat".
Pamela Anderson, an animal-rights activist, actress, and model, visited occupied Palestine at the onset of 2014 for a honeymoon, going to occupied Al-Quds and the Dead Sea.
She was also a judge in the Israeli version of Dancing with the Stars in 2010 and attended a 2017 fundraiser for the Israeli occupation forces.
Johnny Cash, a US country music account made five trips to "Israel", the first one in 1966. He went back in 1968 with his wife, June Carter.
The 13-time Grammy winner also made songs titled "Land of Israel" and "Come to the Wailing Wall".
He was also an avid and fervent anti-war protester during the Vietnam war that the US waged on the country.
Sacha Baron Cohen
Sacha Baron Cohen, a renowned actor and comedian, started off early on, immersing himself in the Israeli occupation during a gap-year program with the Zionist group Habonim Dror.
His first year out of high school was spent in Israeli settlements, where he worked for the Israeli occupation for the full span of his stay in occupied Palestine.
Leonard Cohen, a renowned singer-songwriter and poet, went to occupied Palestine and entertained Israeli occupation soldiers on the frontlines of the 1973 war.
The two-time Grammy winner, an avowed, self-proclaimed pacifist, showed support for the forces killing oppressed Palestinians.
He visited "Tel Aviv" as a tourist and went to the Siani desert to entertain the soldiers after he was recognized by several Israeli singers who asked him to accompany them.
Boycott, Divest, Sanction
The Israeli government hails artists that normalize ties with the occupation and declines BDS calls to boycott performances in Israeli-funded events. "Tel Aviv" convinces itself that such artists, acts, and performances will give its apartheid regime a basis some sort of "legitimacy", utilizing these artists to propagate its unjustifiable causes.
Many prominent artists have recently rejected calls to boycott the Israeli occupation, putting their profits over the needs of the oppressed Palestinian people.
Such artists include Canadian singer Justin Bieber, American rapper Will.i.am, and American pop band Maroon 5.
The international community has become far more supportive of BDS efforts, notably with the increase of Israeli crimes against Palestinians, calling on Bieber to cancel his scheduled performance in occupied Palestine in his upcoming tour.
Those calls, however, were unable to convince Will.i.am, the Black Eyed Peas' frontman, to refrain from performing in "Israel".
The Grammy-winning group was performing in occupied Al-Quds on Monday. Speaking to The Associated Press ahead of the concert, which ironically was taking place on the UN's international day of solidarity with the Palestinian people, Will.i.am said that personal and business ties keep him performing and investing in "Israel".
Maroon 5 has also ignored such calls, and they are set to perform in occupied Palestine in the coming days in a park that the Israeli occupation built to cover up its crimes against Palestinians during the 1948 Nakba.
Many artists have taken the side of the Palestinian people in their fight against the Israeli occupation, such as renowned Irish author Sally Rooney, Emma Watson, and Bella Hadid.
Rooney had received a spew of hatred against her pro-Palestinian decision, which the letter described as "an exemplary response to the mounting injustices inflicted on Palestinians." However, she still made the choice of disallowing her latest book, Beautiful World, Where Are You (2021), to be widely circulated in "Israel", by simply refusing that Modan, an Israeli publishing house, translate her novel into Hebrew.
Watson, an award-winning actress and activist, utilized her personal Instagram with over 64 million followers to post a message expressing solidarity with the Palestinian cause. Her post, however, upset and triggered pro-Israelis, prompting them of course to accuse the British star of anti-Semitism.
Bella Hadid, a model and renowned pro-Palestinian activist, has been very vocal in her support of the Palestinian cause and led to pro-Israelis to bash her for denouncing Israeli crimes against Palestinians in light of the violence they were perpetrating against them.
The Israeli occupation, through its power, has been subjecting those who oppose it to all sorts of oppression and international campaigns to demonize them and portray them as "anti-semitic", while those who comply are portrayed as "good" and "righteous" when all they are vocalizing is support for an oppressive, apartheid regime.