An Open Letter to Pink Floyd Lead Singer Roger Waters: Condemn this Brutal Massacre

Someone shouldn't need to have personally experienced a tragedy to be outraged by senseless, brutal murders of innocents -- and to condemn these acts.
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You joined the cultural boycott against Israel two weeks ago. Since last Friday I have been looking for your condemnation of the brutal murder of the Fogel family -- three children, their mother and father -- in Itamar in the West Bank. This atrocity should be condemned by decent people everywhere, no matter their political beliefs.

My daughter, Tal Kehrmann, was killed by a Hamas terrorist on March 5, 2003, on a bus on her way home from school, along with 16 other innocent children and adults. Tal was 17. She loved music and knew the words to all the popular songs, Hebrew and English.

But we shouldn't need to have personally experienced such a tragedy to be outraged by senseless, brutal murders of innocents -- and to condemn these acts.

In your letter announcing your decision to boycott my country you emphasize your belief "that all people deserve basic human rights." So did the Fogel family. I am sorry to conclude, Mr. Waters, that your decision, based on misinformation and propaganda, is biased, one-sided and contrary to the facts.

In your letter, you demand that the separation fence running along the pre-1967 border between Israel and the West Bank be dismantled. But you do not realize that this fence has saved hundreds of lives. Since its partial completion a few years ago, the number of terror attacks against Israel has been reduced to almost none. The right to life supersedes every other human right.

You decided to join the boycott because of "the abhorrent and draconian control that Israel wields over the besieged Palestinians." But you ignore the thousands of rocket and missiles that have been fired at Israeli towns and villages since Hamas, a fanatic Islamic party, wrested control of Gaza from the Palestinian Authority in a violent military confrontation in June 2007. Some exploded a few meters from kindergartens and hospitals. It was a miracle that no one was killed.

Israel supplies basic goods to Gaza's residents. But it seeks to prevent extremists in Gaza from acquiring rockets and other weapons. Is this a draconian act?

Just this week Israel intercepted a ship bound for Gaza carrying sophisticated weapons from Iran, including missiles and thousands of mortar shells. Do Gaza's residents need such weapons to live? As a genuine peace-seeker, you must check and keep abreast of the facts before taking action such as joining a boycott.

You call upon the world to support a nonviolent resistance. Is that how you would describe these weapons' purpose? Is that how you would characterize the slaughter of a 4-month-old baby girl, a 3-year-old boy, an 11 year-old boy, and their mother and father?

Mr. Waters, as a world-renowned musician, your actions have an impact, especially on impressionable young people the age of my Tal when she was murdered. I understand how joining the boycott based on misinformation can happen. I hope that after reading this letter, you will look into the situation in my country, learn the facts, and then reconsider your decision.

Even if you do not change your mind, please maintain the human sensitivity we expect from an admired artist: Condemn this brutal massacre.


Ron Kehrmann,

Ron Kehrmann is a print shop operator in Haifa, Israel, whose 17-year old daughter, Tal, was killed along with 16 other people by a suicide bomber on a Haifa bus on March 5, 2003.