Pick of the Political Pops: Steve Earle “Jerusalem”

Photo: Nick Barber

It can sometimes feel awkward editing a website promoting the music of a country led by some pretty dubious people. In the last 48 hours we’ve had a US secretary of state describe the Israeli offer of a temporary ceasefire in Gaza – akin to someone smashing up your house for 7 months and offering to stop briefly while they catch their breath – as “extraordinarily, extraordinarily generous”. Orwellian doesn’t cover it.

But then we remind ourselves that the government is not the people and that the best of the US can be seen in the protests which have taken place across campuses in recent weeks in support of the Palestinians, with both students and university staff risking arrest, police violence and life-changing sanctions such as being booted off their courses/out of their jobs. As many have noted, it calls to mind the Vietnam student demos from the 1960s but in this case, there is no threat of conscription for the individuals concerned, just a human empathy for another people which they’ve put over and above their own futures. Heroes of our times basically – lest we forget, many of whom are Jewish – and people who deserve solidarity and support. Steve Earle as always has something to say. Workers of the world unite, happy May Day!

About Mark Whitfield 2031 Articles
Editor of Americana UK website, the UK's leading home for americana news and reviews since 2001 (when life was simpler, at least for the first 253 days)
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Andrew Riggs

akin to someone smashing up your house for 7 months and offering to stop briefly while they catch their breath – as “extraordinarily, extraordinarily generous”. Orwellian doesn’t cover it. – ludicrous comment.

Andy Davidson

Think some of us are feeling more angry than hopeful.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=su_fep2iARQ

Tris Robinson

I enjoy this site enormously and it has given me access to music I’d never heard or considered before. I appreciate readers probably have political opinions that differ greatly. The Middle East situation is troubling but really don’t think one side,Isreal is to blame, and the other side, Palestinians/Hamas are the victims. Far from it. The student protests are best described as “useful idiots “. This forum is not about this situation. My opinion obviously and others are free to disagree (not something you can do everywhere in the world).

Tris Robinson

Thats fine Mark. I expect I agree with you on many points. With regards to the Middle East situation it’s not as black and white for me, with Isreal bad and Hamas/Palestinians good. October 7th was horrific. I expect hamas half expected the results. They will happier sacrifice their own people for political points. They have refused cease fire offers, and retain hostages. Just return them. Isreal is the only democratic country in the region. Those protesting would be in jail or worse if they lived in Gaza. The Palestinians have had more aid than anyone else but have squandered it on rockets and tunnels, to paraphrase Paul Weller. Hamas leaders have billions in the bank but are happy to see their own people starving. Isreal is the only country in the region to have a Pride march…Finally I don’t recall marches and protests regarding Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iran etc when they slaughter thousands or is it only Isreal that gets this treatment? Cheers

Tris Robinson

Hi Mark, we can agree to disagree on this. To remotely think October 7th was a legitimate act of armed resistance is frankly ridiculous. Slaughtering 1200 or so in the most horrific way. Something like a third of the Israeli population are Muslim, the only country in the region that Muslims are actually able to vote freely, and is pink washing by Isreal as abhorrent as making homosexuality illegal or executing gay people for their sexuality? As I said, I don’t agree with everything Israel does, but I certainly disagree with what hamas does. I think we should have a ceasefire! Take care, Tris.

Ralph Ownby

Disgusted by the ignorant Hamas support I seem to read in too many places. What is wrong with you people?

Andy Davidson

Thank goodness that’s not the case here.

Ralph Ownby

Yes it is. Disgusting.