Pizza Express has refused to respond to calls to cancel performances this evening and over the weekend at its Soho jazz club by notorious antisemite Gilad Atzmon.
Earlier this week, Campaign Against Antisemitism wrote to the Chief Executive of Pizza Express, Jinlong Wang, to alert him to the fact that Mr Atzmon is a notorious antisemite who has, for a number of years, used social media as a vehicle to harass and bait Jewish people.
We have received no response.
Tickets to Mr Atzmon’s performances were selling at £20 each and have now sold out.
In March this year, Mr Atzmon attended a talk at the London School of Economics with Richard Falk, the discredited and disgraced fringe antisemitic conspiracy theorist and the former UN envoy, where he reportedly told those around him that “the Jews were expelled from Germany for misbehaving.” Stunned audience members asked him to repeat what he had said and he did. Mr Atzmon also was heard recommending the works of disgraced historian David Irving, who in 2000 was proven in court to be an antisemite, a Holocaust denier and an admirer of Hitler. It is also reported that Mr Atzmon later said, “Jews are always expelled for a reason.”
In December 2014, he told a Jewish Twitter user, “I am not a Jew any more. I indeed despise the Jew in me (whatever is left). I absolutely detest the Jew in you.”
Another of his books, The Wandering Who, was described in 2011 as “quite probably the most antisemitic book published in this country in recent years.”
He has stated that Jews were responsible for their persecution by the Nazis, Jews should apologise for making gentiles hate them, burning synagogues is “a rational act”, Jews are trying to control the world, Jews are harming the planet, Jews caused the credit crunch, and Israel is worse than Nazi Germany. He has also trivialised the scale and impact of the Holocaust.
The International Definition of Antisemitism, adopted by the British government, states, among other things, that the following are antisemitic:
- Making mendacious, dehumanising, demonising, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective — such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
- Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).
- Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis.
In March 2012, a collective of Palestinian writers and activists disavowed Mr Atzmon for his attacks on Jews and Judaism, as well as his denial of the Holocaust.
It is disgraceful that Pizza Express is willing to profit from hosting an antisemite.
If you agree, please feel free to contact Jinlong Wang’s office to tell them your views on 020 3798 9000.