Alan MacLeod Censorship

Noam Chomsky, Cornel West, Naomi Klein Join Over 100 Academics Denouncing The Israel Lobby’s Attempt to Cancel Lowkey

In addition, dozens of prominent Jewish voices have rejected the Israel lobby’s attempts to silence Lowkey and signed the letter.

By Alan Macleod / MintPress News

The worldwide campaign of support for hip hop artist and political campaigner Lowkey is growing. Following the publication of Monday’s open letter backing the British-Iraqi rapper’s right to freedom of speech, more than 100 academics, journalists and other public figures have signed a letter of public support, denouncing what they see as a “coordinated smear campaign to demonize, defame and deplatform him.”

Among the most notable signatories include Princess Dana of Jordan, a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, American linguist and political scientist Noam Chomsky and philosopher and political activist Cornel West.

In recent weeks Lowkey – a tireless campaigner for Palestinian human rights – has been the target of a disingenuous attempt to destroy his career, led by pro-Israeli groups, many of whom are either directly funded or staffed by individuals from the Israeli Embassy in London. Following their pressure campaign, his talks and performances at universities have been postponed or canceled. Meanwhile, the lobbying group “We Believe In Israel” is trying to remove his music from streaming platform Spotify. Even British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has involved himself in the affair, seemingly fully supporting the witch hunt against him and signaling this could be the first of many similar efforts to silence pro-Palestinian voices.

Read more: 

In addition to Chomsky, dozens of prominent Jewish voices have rejected the Israel lobby’s attempts to silence Lowkey and signed the letter. These include writer and activist Naomi Klein, Professor Peter Beinart, editor-at-large of Jewish Currents magazine, and journalist and lawyer Glenn Greenwald. A number of prominent Israelis have also endorsed Lowkey, including historians Avi Shlaim and Ilan Pappé, as well as activist Miko Peled. 

Since its publication on Monday, more musicians and entertainers, such as electronic music legend Brian Eno, comedian Frankie Boyle, and rappers Akala and Immortal Technique, have also asked to have their names added to the letter. 

After MintPress exposed last week the yearslong campaign of spying and intimidation launched against Lowkey, messages of support have been pouring in from around the world. “The Zionist led campaign to get Lowkey’s music removed from Spotify uses the same cynical tactics as sites like Canary Mission — intimidate and silence those who express solidarity with Palestine by threatening to make their careers suffer,” wrote human rights group, Jewish Voice For Peace. 

“Solidarity with Lowkey,” tweeted musician Maverick Sabre, adding;

“His music is his message, and his message has never been hatred or division, only education and discussion. He fights for what he believes in, you don’t have to agree with him but his voice should be allowed to be heard not silenced.”

The letter of support for Lowkey is now open for members of the public to sign at Change.Org.

You can sign the petition by clicking here. 

The full text, along with a selection of the more prominent individuals to have signed it, is as follows: 

Spotify: Do not buckle to pressure to deplatform Lowkey

We artists, musicians and other public figures and organizations are deeply concerned by the coordinated campaign against rapper and campaigner Lowkey.

Lowkey has become the target of a coordinated smear campaign to demonize, defame and deplatform him. Earlier this month, organized groups forced the University of Cambridge Palestine Solidarity Society to postpone his lecture and were able to stop his appearance at the National Union of Students in Liverpool.

Now, a campaign by lobby group “We Believe in Israel” is demanding that his content be removed from music streaming service Spotify. This is unacceptable censorship.

The campaign against Lowkey is designed to silence Palestinians and their supporters. Anti-Palestinian censorship is now reaching into the artistic realm. Today Lowkey; tomorrow, who is next?

Lowkey’s music has inspired and energized millions around the world and ignited an interest in many about the issues he raises in his work. As a relentless advocate for Palestinian human rights, he is a target for many who would rather his message not be heard.

This is precisely the reason for the recent campaign against him. We hereby call on Spotify and all other platforms not to buckle to pressure groups who would rather see his music removed than grapple with the issues he highlights in his music.

More information about the campaign against Lowkey can be found here.

Signed below:

Journalists, Politicians, Academics and Media Figures

Noam Chomsky, Laureate Professor of Linguistics, University of Arizona

HRH Princess Dana Firas of Jordan, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador

Cornel West, philosopher, social critic

John Pilger, filmmaker and journalist

Glenn Greenwald, journalist

Naomi Klein, author and activist

Peter Beinart, professor, editor-at-Large, Jewish Currents

Mohammed el-Kurd, journalist and activist

Muna el-Kurd, journalist and activist

Andrew Feinstein, former South African ANC politician and anti-Apartheid activist

Ronnie Kasrils former minister, South African government

Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, member of the Parliament of South Africa.

Vijay Prashad, writer and activist

Avi Shlaim, Emeritus Professor of International Relations, University of Oxford

Ilan Pappé, Professor of History, Exeter University

Jill Stein, politician, Green Party nominee for U.S. President, 2012, 2016

Chris Hedges, journalist 

Abby Martin, journalist and filmmaker

Mike Prysner, journalist and filmmaker
Aaron Maté, journalist

Yasha Levine, journalist

Ben Norton, journalist
Mark Ames, journalist

Max Blumenthal, journalist

Katie Halper, journalist
Leilani Farha, Human Rights Advocate and former UN Special Rapporteur
Sut Jhally, Professor of Communication, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Miko Peled, Israeli activist and author 

Mark Seddon, Director for the Centre of UN Studies, former speechwriter for the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon

Zeina Ashrawi Hutchinson, human rights activist

Medea Benjamin, peace campaigner, CODEPINK

Mnar Adley, journalist

Asa Winstanley, journalist 

Alan MacLeod, journalist
Alexander Rubinstein, journalist

Dima Khatib, journalist

Hoda Katebi, writer and activist

Nora Barrows-Friedman, journalist

Ahmed Shihab-Eldin, Journalist

Hussain Manawer, Poet, Writer, Mental Health Advocate, 

Leanne Mohamad, British Palestinian Student Activist

Huda Ammori, activist, Palestine Action

Majed Abusalama, researcher and activist

Catherine Chiniara, senior lecturer, University of Westminster

Doug Henwood, journalist

Ahdaf Soueif, writer

Noura Erakat, Human Rights Attorney and author 

Huwaida Arraf, Civil/human rights attorney and activist

Mira Bar-Hillel, journalist

Yara Hawari, AlShabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network

David Miller, Spinwatch

Hanan Ashrawi – Palestinian political and civil society leader

Loubna Qutami, Assistant Professor, Department of Asian American Studies, UCLA

Karim Mussilhy, Vice Chair of Grenfell United

Susan Abulhawa, novelist

David Mivasair, rabbi

Mickey Huff, professor of social science, history and journalism at Diablo Valley College, Director, Project Censored

International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network


Africa4Palestine, Johannesburg


Bob Jeffery, President of Sheffield TUC.

Jennine Khalik, journalist

Alya Mooro, author

Alfreda Benge, artist

Richard Kuper – Labour Party, Jewish Voice for Labour

Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan, poet and activist

María Emilia Tijoux, University of Chile

Dr Brooke Maddux psychiatrist

Dr Hilary Lester, psychoanalyst

Dr Teresa Bailey, consultant child and adolescent psychotherapist

Dr Carolyn Austin, analytical psychologist

Dr Pamela Blakelock, group analytic psychotherapist

Mostafa Salameh, Polar adventurer and writer

Salman Abu Sitta, Founder Palestine Land Society

Victoria Brittain, Journalist

Carol Churchill, Playwright

Dr Ghada Karmi, Academic and Writer

Professor Nur Masalha, academic

Betty Hunter, Honorary President, Palestine Solidarity Campaign

Music, Entertainment and Sports

Roger Waters, Grammy Award nominated and BAFTA winning musician

Michael Malarkey, actor

Anwar Hadid, model

Farah Nabulsi, Academy Award nominated and BAFTA winning filmmaker

Frankie Boyle, comedian and writer

FredWreck, Grammy Award-winning music artist and record producer for Dr. Dre & Snoop Dogg

Wretch 32, musician

Brian Eno, musician

Charlie Sloth, DJ

Akala, musician

Immortal Technique, musician

Mark Ruffalo, actor

Guz Khan, comedian and actor

Aymen Hamdouchi, actor

Billy Dib, former IBF featherweight champion

Mim Shaikh, broadcaster and actor

Chirolles Khalil, UK Music Video Awards nominated director

Ken Loach, director

Ana Tijoux, Grammy Award nominated and Latin Grammy Award winning singer

Ghetts, musician

Avelino, musician

Bu Kolthoum, music producer, hip-hop & soul artist

Maverick Sabre, musician 

Yassin Alsalman (Narcy), music artist

Khxled Siddiq, musician

Dexplicit, record producer

Mr Hudson, musician

K Koke, musician

Styles P, musician

Blay Vision, musician

Tamar Nafar, musician

Zekaria al-Bostani (Zek Snaps), photographer

Elliot Hensford, creative director, photographer

Charlie Sarsfield, director

Robert Wyatt – Musician

K Salaam – musician

Alan MacLeod

Alan MacLeod is Senior Staff Writer for MintPress News. After completing his PhD in 2017 he published two books: Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting and Propaganda in the Information Age: Still Manufacturing Consent, as well as a number of academic articles. He has also contributed to FAIR.orgThe GuardianSalonThe GrayzoneJacobin Magazine, and Common Dreams.

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments