Jazz musician John Lurie slams Israeli 'apartheid', 'genocide' in Gaza

Jazz musician John Lurie slams Israeli 'apartheid', 'genocide' in Gaza
The comments from John Lurie come on the back of growing criticism in the entertainment industry of Israel's war on Gaza.
2 min read
29 December, 2023
John Lurie has a career in the entertainment industry going back to 1978 [Photo by Frans Schellekens/Redferns]

US musician John Lurie labelled Israel's war on Gaza a "genocide" on Wednesday, as greater numbers of celebrities speak out against Israel's brutal military assault.

The jazz musician, 71, wrote on X, formerly Twitter, saying that "apparently it is bad for your career to say you are opposed to genocide. But F*ck it".

"I am opposed to genocide. I am opposed to apartheid. I am opposed to children having limbs amputated without anestheasia," he added, referring to reports from Gaza hospitals of severe shortages in basic medical supplies.

Israel's renewed assault on Gaza, which has been ongoing since Hamas' attack on southern Israel on 7 October that killed 1,139 Israelis, has killed 21,320 Palestinians, with a further 55,603 being wounded according to Gaza's health ministry.

Its siege and bombardment have also led to a severe depletion of basic necessities in the enclave, including food, fuel and mdicine.

Lurie is a jazz musician, actor and painter, whose career started in 1978 with the inception of the Lounge Lizards. He most recently hosted an art show Painting with John on HBO Max.

Many members of the Western celebrities have criticised Israel's conduct in Gaza, some with having faced negative repercussions for their careers.

This includes actors Susan Sarandon and Melissa Barrera, who were dropped from their talent agencies and movies over remarks they made in support of Gaza.

Earlier in December, over 1,300 artists and entertainment professionals including actress Olivia Colman and director Ken Loach accusing Western entertainment institutions of pro-Palestine censorship.

As well artists civil society organisations such as rights groups and labour unions have been protesting for months for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza, with protests taking place across the US, in the UK and France, among other countries globally.