TEL AVIV — Pink Floyd vocalist Roger Waters is an “idiot” with a “hateful agenda” that is a “bunch of lies” about Israel, Canadian-Israeli philanthropist Sylvan Adams said.
Adams’ remarks comes after he paid the $1.3 million it took to bring pop superstar Madonna to Israel for Saturday night’s Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv. Last month, Waters joined the BDS chorus urging Madonna to boycott the contest, saying it “normalizes the occupation, the apartheid, the ethnic cleansing, the incarceration of children, the slaughter of unarmed protesters.”
Responding to Waters, Adam did not mince words.
“He’s an idiot. He’s an idiot with a serious ignorance about history,” Adams told Breitbart News.
Jews “are in fact the indigenous people of this land. If anyone wants to take him to Jerusalem, built by our King David, that might enlighten him,” he said.
“He’s an ignoramus. And he has an agenda and it’s a hateful agenda. Somebody obviously spun his head around and fed him with a bunch of lies about this place which any visitor to Israel knows is not true after five minutes.”
Bringing Madonna to Israel was a way of “showing off our beautiful Tel Aviv” to the world — in particular to the U.S., which would otherwise not care about Eurovision, despite its status as the biggest song competition in the world.
“She makes news, and by the way, so does Israel,” he said. “This combination will have us in every major newspaper in the U.S.”
Madonna, who arrived Tuesday night accompanied by an entourage of some 135 people including rapper KoVu, a choir of 40 singers, and 25 dancers, told Reuters that she would “never stop playing music to suit someone’s political agenda.”
Adams praised the megastar’s stance: “She’s an artist, why should she have a political agenda?”
Madonna’s visit isn’t the first time the 60-year-old billionaire has put Israel in the cultural spotlight on the world stage. Last year, he reportedly invested $80 million to bring the Giro d’Italia to Israel, marking the first time the cycling competition — the world’s largest — took place outside Italy. Adams, an avid cyclist who also competed in the Giro, said at the time that bringing the competition to Israel constituted an “antidote to BDS.”
According to Adams, who immigrated to Israel four years ago, first-time visitors to the country are invariably “surprised and impressed.”
“They are shocked to see that we are open, tolerant, friendly, pluralistic, democratic and most importantly, safe,” he said. “My idea is to show the true Israel … and because the media doesn’t want to portray that, this is a way of reaching over them.”
With close to 200 million viewers, Eurovision has the potential to reach “200 million first-time visitors to Israel via their television sets,” Adams added.
While Adams acknowledged that last week’s rocket barrage into Israel from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip left Eurovision — and Madonna’s visit — on shaky ground, he remained confident in Israel’s military and political leaders.
“Sure, it’s possible to spook Eurovision from wanting to host here,” Adams said, “but we have confidence in our military and missile defense system. Yes, I got a bit nervous, but I have confidence in our prime minister that he knew that Eurovision was on the following week.”
“Hamas used [the contest] as leverage to get some more concessions,” Adams said.
“It’s all a big game for them. For us, we just want to live like normal people.”