There has been so much good news regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict recently that I’m almost giddy with hope and excitement. My happiness increased when I followed a link in Jewschool to a September Haaretz article about a new Israeli-Palestinian radio venture, All for Peace.
One criticism I had about Israeli cultural life when I lived there in 1972-73 and 1979-80 was that you never heard any Arabic or Palestinian music on Israeli radio (except for the Arab language broadcasts which most Israelis could not understand). I remember the frisson of excitement I felt when I heard David Broza at a Hebrew University concert sing a portion of one of his songs in Arabic. There was a slight, but audible gasp from the audience since this act of musical defiance and celebration had an aura of the forbidden about it. Now, with the advent of All for Peace, Israelis can listen to such music without impediment.
I’m listening right now and I like what I’m hearing. Unlike much of Israeli radio, you don’t hear too much outright sappy, derivative pop. You do hear a little too much musical nostalgia like the Police and the Rolling Stones, but a little nostalgia for the right kind of music is a good thing–there’s so much contemporary music that is outright crap. Right now, I’m listening to U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For (an apt song regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. If you’d like to listen for yourself, click here: All for Peace audio stream (be patient–the audio file takes a long time to load).
For a fuller explanation of the mission and a rundown of the organizational sponsors of this venture, check out About the Radio: A Palestinian-Israeli Radio Station.