Report: Oprah Winfrey Shunned BDS Activists Demanding Meeting Over Leviev Diamonds
Media mogul Oprah Winfrey was among this month’s targets of BDS pressure, the New York Post reported on Sunday. But the TV network owner, best known for her world-famous talk show, refused even to meet with the representatives of Adalah-NY, an advocacy group focused on boycotting Israel and Israeli products, who showed up at the New York offices of her magazine, “O,” bearing a letter they wished her to sign, publicly rejecting the products of Uzbeki-Israeli billionaire “King of Diamonds” Lev Leviev.
Winfrey, a recipient of the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom — bestowed upon her by Barack Obama, for whom she openly campaigned — had appeared on the cover of the May issue of her magazine wearing Leviev diamonds.
With operations in Angola, South Africa and Botswana, and boutiques in New York, London, Dubai and Singapore, Leviev is accused by the BDS movement of being a prime abuser of human rights and an appropriator of Palestinian land. Its attempt to get Winfrey to sign a letter distancing herself from him coincided with its demand that Jewish reggae star Matisyahu sign a document supporting a Palestinian state before performing at the Rototom Sunsplash festival in Spain on Saturday.
The singer’s refusal to do so elicited a disinvitation from the concert’s organizers, which was quickly reversed, following a condemnation by the Spanish government and an uproar among Jewish groups.
When Matisyahu did take to the stage this weekend to perform for the 20,000 people in the audience, he was greeted by the waving of large Palestinian flags. This did not prevent him from singing a song about Jerusalem.
Though Matisyahu is a proud Jew and openly pro-Israel, Winfrey is a gentile who has exhibited pro-Palestinian leanings. According to the media watchdog CAMERA, in 2005, Winfrey broadcast a TV documentary, “Oprah Takes You Around the World,” which included a short segment about the Arab-Israeli conflict consisting of one image after another of Israelis carrying weapons against unarmed Palestinians, with no reference to terrorism. That same year, Palestinian victimization at the hands of Israel was alleged in the June issue of “O,” in a 10-page feature entitled “Love and Terror” by David France, the last article of a five-part series on “rescuing the world’s girls.” The article focused on Palestinian grievances against Israel, with no mention of the Israeli victims of Palestinian terror attacks.