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Winston Marshall Mumford

BDS proponents were slammed as “ruthless malevolent actors” by UK musician Winston Marshall, who quit his band in 2021 to stand up for his principles.

By United with Israel Staff

Standing up for what’s right in defiance of popular opinion is never easy, but that’s exactly the route British rocker Winston Marshall has taken. Once again this week, Marshall refused to hop on the bandwagon, calling out anti-Israel activists as “ruthless malevolent actors” who seek only to harm the Jewish state, and care little for actually helping Palestinians.

The talented musician rose to prominence as a member of the Grammy Award-winning folk rock outfit Mumford & Sons, which has released four studio albums, toured the world, and notched multiple international hits.

Despite the band’s popularity and success, Marshall quit in the summer of 2021. He departed after the social media mob descended upon him when he dared praise a book critical of the far-left. Despite the fact the 13 members of Marshall’s Jewish family were murdered in concentration camps during the Holocaust, he was labeled a “fascist” and falsely accused of promoting far-right extremism.

“The only way forward for me is to leave the band,” Marshall wrote at the time. “I hope in distancing myself from them I am able to speak my mind without them suffering the consequences.”

Marshall is speaking his mind again, this time in connection with the shameful and cowardly cancellation of concerts in Israel by the American indie rock band Big Thief. Despite the fact that the band’s drummer is Israeli, and that the band planned to donate proceeds from the shows to Palestinian causes, they cancelled their gigs in Tel Aviv to comply with BDS bullies’ demands to boycott the Jewish state.

“If there was ever any doubt about the [BDS] group’s priorities, in successfully dissuading Big Thief from performing a fundraiser for Palestinians, surely now we can all see them for the ruthless malevolent actors they are,” warns Marshall.

Marshall then shared his own run-in with BDS villains: “Some years ago, a friend and musical collaborator, Senegalese singer Baaba Maal, was due to perform in Jerusalem. Baaba is a Muslim, I might add. Within days of his announcing the show, a BDS activist managed to call me on my (personal) phone, urging me to dissuade Baaba from doing the show.

“He told me that he would happily do it himself, if I preferred, I just had to put him in touch with Baaba. Suffice to say Baaba, unlike others, apparently still believes that music does have the power to heal. The shows went ahead,” said Marshall.

The British musician also outlined BDS’ shameful roadmap: “Act One: Artist announces show, often acknowledging Palestinian plight and usually offering support. Act Two: Social Media storms, BDS activists swarm. Act Three: show gets cancelled.”

Thankfully, there are artists like Marshall, his friend Baaba Maal, Australian rocker Nick Cave, and British singer-songwriter Morrissey, to name a few, who refuse to let BDS’ hate for Israel dictate their artistic expression and tour schedules.