Creating new perspectives since 2009

Demi Lovato accused of whitewashing the occupation by taking sponsored trip to Israel

October 3, 2019 at 4:27 pm

American pop star and actress Demi Lovato [Twitter]

American pop star and actress Demi Lovato has been accused of ignorance on the Palestinian issue after she posted several photos from her sponsored trip to Israel with lengthy captions praising the country as “absolutely magical”.

Many have accused the 27-year-old singer of ignoring the apartheid system affecting Palestinians as she is pictured exploring landmarks such as the Western (Al-Buraq) Wall, and Yad Vashem, the Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem.

Her fans took to Twitter to highlight the racist Israeli policies enforced on Palestinians including the destruction of their homes, land grabs and being denied their rights to live, work and move freely. The backlash was so great, Lovato blocked  the comment feature on Instagram.

On a separate Instagram post from the trip where comments were enabled, numerous fans commented using the hashtag “FreePalestine” and the Palestine flag emoji.

The backlash included fans sharing their history after Lovato failed to address and speak about the issues resulting from the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict in any of her posts and referring to the land solely as Israel.

The former Disney star, who has more than 74 million Instagram followers, explained in the caption that she “was raised Christian and has Jewish ancestors” and was excited to travel to places she’d “read about in the Bible growing up”.

Some voiced their disappointment in Lovato’s lack of knowledge by claiming she didn’t do enough research before her trip, which showed ignorance towards the plight of the Palestinians and even getting her facts wrong about the correct part of the Jordan River Jesus was claimed to be baptised.

Last night, she posted an apology in which she admitted she didn’t realise her trip would cause controversy, as it was not meant to insinuate any representation of a political statement, and apologised for not being “more educated”.

But this put the singer under more fire as some of her Israeli fans accused her of siding with anti-Israel activists. Lovato then removed the comment.

Lovato has been on a break from music since her near-fatal overdose in Los Angeles.

She has previously shown support for countries in conflict; changing her Instagram profile picture to blue to stand in solidarity with Sudanese protesters during their uprising earlier this year.