WASHINGTON – The Biden administration is weighing in on the controversy over Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters, saying his current performances in Germany had been antisemitic, an evaluation shared by many in Israel and the pro-Israel group.
The State Division stated Tuesday that Waters has “a long track record of using antisemitic tropes” and a concert he gave late last month in Germany “contained imagery that is deeply offensive to Jewish people and minimized the Holocaust.”
The comments came in a written response to a question posed at Monday’s State Department press briefing about whether the administration agreed with criticism of Rogers from the U.S. special envoy to combat antisemitism, Deborah Lipstadt.
“Special Envoy Lipstadt’s quote-tweet speaks for itself,” the department said.
“The concert in question, which took place in Berlin, contained imagery that is deeply offensive to Jewish people and minimized the Holocaust,” the department said. “The artist in question has a long track record of using antisemitic tropes to denigrate Jewish people.”
In a Might 24 tweet after the live performance in Berlin, throughout which Waters appeared on stage in a dressing up harking back to Nazi-era Germany, Lipstadt denounced the musician by echoing feedback from EU antisemitism envoy Katharina von Schnurbein, who’s German.
“I wholeheartedly concur with @EUAntisemitism ’s condemnation of Roger Waters and his despicable Holocaust distortion,” Lipstadt wrote in reply to a tweet from von Schnurbein.
Von Schnurbein had taken difficulty with Waters’ efficiency in Berlin in addition to his earlier feedback associated to Israel and the Holocaust.
“I am sick & disgusted by Roger Waters’ obsession to belittle and trivialize the Shoah & the sarcastic way in which he delights in trampling on the victims, systematically murdered by the Nazis,” von Schnurbein wrote. “In Germany. Enough is enough.”
Shortly after the live performance, police in Berlin stated they’d opened an investigation of Waters on suspicion of incitement over the costume he wore.
Photographs on social media confirmed Waters firing an imitation machine gun whereas wearing an extended black coat with a purple armband. Police confirmed that the costume might represent a glorification, justification or approval of Nazi rule and subsequently a disturbance of the general public peace.
Waters rejected these accusations in a press release on Fb and Instagram, saying “the elements of my performance that have been questioned are quite clearly a statement in opposition to fascism, injustice, and bigotry in all its forms.”
He claimed that ”makes an attempt to painting these parts as one thing else are disingenuous and politically motivated.” Waters has additionally drawn the ire of the pro-Israel group for his outspoken assist of the BDS motion, which requires boycotts and sanctions in opposition to Israel.