Tuesday, 19 October 2021
Anti-Israel posters based on Sally Rooney book cover to be removed

A Sally Rooney book cover that has been used to promote the boycott of Israel on London bus stops has been called “vandalism” by Transport for London.

The posters, which featured a doctored cover of the author’s second novel, featured the words “Normal People Boycott Israel”.

TfL (Transport for London) said that these were not authorised adverts and that it was working to remove them “immediately”.

The posters appeared to be placed behind the glass panels on the bus stop, with some people on social media suspecting that these had been sanctioned by TfL. Which as the head honcho of TfL is Sadiq Khan wasn't an unreasonable suspicion. Plus TfL has power in London beyond running buses and trains. 

Lord Wolfson, a justice minister, wrote on Twitter: “Would you please clarify - was this ‘advertisement’ originally approved by TfL, but now is under investigation? Or was it put up without any TfL input or approval?”

The Telegraph identified that one of the posters in Vauxhall, South London, had already been removed, and that it had been repaired with sellotape after being opened.

The artist behind the poster is believed to be Protest Stencil, who has placed posters on bus stops before over legitimate advertisements.

They did not respond to a request for comment from The Telegraph.

They wrote on social media: “You can tell a lot about a person from whether their solidarity is with the coloniser or the colonised. Respect to Sally Rooney for her principled stand in support of Palestinians. 

“Around the world, Normal People - the colonised, the exploited, the marginalised - have an instinctive solidarity with Palestinians resisting the theft of their homeland. Those with a colonial mindset, on the other hand, dismiss Palestinians and other racialised people as inherently lesser, uncultured, incapable of rational political thought.

“All arguments against the Palestinian strategy of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) are built on that shaky base, the ‘we know better than you how you should challenge your oppression’.

“The keffiyeh fishnet pattern is a traditional Palestinian solidarity symbol, and also here (in the sardine can from the original Normal People cover) represents the empty nets of Gaza’s fishermen, facing restrictions on where they can fish, and also regular attacks from the occupation’s navy.”

Ambassador Danny Danon, Israel’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, said on Twitter: “Normal people defend human rights. Normal people condemn terror. Normal people support peace. Normal people do not support the hate-fuelled terror-funding BDS.”

Posted on 10/19/2021 2:11 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
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