Natalie Portman intends to clear the air regarding her recent cancelation of accepting an award in Israel after a politician in the government criticized her. Reportedly, Portman was given the Genesis Prize Laureate, one of the highest honors awarded to an Israeli citizen.
In a statement released to the organization, People Magazine, Portman revealed that her decision not to go to the ceremony has been “mischaracterized” by the media and other people.
Natalie said she chose not to go to the event because Benjamin Netanyahu would be giving a speech, a person whose policies she doesn’t agree with, and the actress doesn’t want to send the wrong message. For her to attend, would be symbolic of her complicity in relation to the Israeli government’s actions, a message she doesn’t want to send.
The actress explained that she isn’t part of the BDS movement, and just because she doesn’t want to attend the ceremony, it doesn’t mean she abandoned the nation as a whole.
My decision not to attend the Genesis Prize ceremony has been mischaracterized by others. Let me speak for myself. I chose not to attend because I did not want to appear as endorsing Benjamin Netanyahu, who was to be giving a speech at the ceremony. By the same token, I am not part of the BDS movement and do not endorse it. Like many Israelis and Jews around the world, I can be critical of the leadership in Israel without wanting to boycott the entire nation. I treasure my Israeli friends and family, Israeli food, books, art, cinema, and dance. Israel was created exactly 70 years ago as a haven for refugees from the Holocaust. But the mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities is simply not in line with my Jewish values. Because I care about Israel, I must stand up against violence, corruption, inequality, and abuse of power. Please do not take any words that do not come directly from me as my own. This experience has inspired me to support a number of charities in Israel. I will be announcing them soon, and I hope others will join me in supporting the great work they are doing.
Rather, she just doesn’t agree with their politics and recent decision-making and policies. In her Instagram post, the Star Wars alum said she cares about the country and intends to rise against “violence, corruption, inequality, and abuse of power.”
According to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, the Genesis Prize Foundation was canceled because of the death of Palestinian protestors who were shot and killed along the Gaza Strip.
If reports are correct, the protestors were unarmed and not dangerous, once again, bringing the actions of the government into question by political watchdogs.
According to Regev, an Israeli politician, Natalie is a tool of the opposing side, and she now speaks of the history of Israel as a story of evil, rather than one of benevolence, truth, and prosperity.