The Qalqilya municipality, under the control of Hamas since the latest round of Palestinian local elections, has banned a performance scheduled as part of the ongoing Palestine International Festival for Music and Dance. The reason? According to the municipality, the crowd coming to watch the festivities would trample the grass in the city stadium.

Didn’t know that Hamas cared not only about the obliteration of the Zionist entity, but also about the care and maintenance of Palestine’s verdant fields of grass? Not convinced? Well, neither are some Qalqilya residents who wanted to go see the show. They claim that Hamas cancelled the festival because it…say it with me now…could lead to dancing.

“We’ve become like Iran and Afghanistan when it was ruled by the Taliban,” one of the organizers of the festival told The Jerusalem Post.

“The municipality’s argument over its concern for the grass is ridiculous. They actually don’t want to see young men and woman appearing together at the event.” Eman Hamouri, head of the festival, condemned the ban and urged the Palestinian Legislative Council and the Palestinian Authority to step in and allow the event to take place.

Personally, I think as long as we’re going to be encouraging inter-cultural dialogue as part of the peace movement, the heads of Hamas and some of the rabbanim in the stricter neighborhoods of our fair state should sit down, share some nana tea and discuss the most effective ways to stop the dancing among the children. Because really, it’s all about the children. And if you are making with the dancing, it is much harder to make with the road sniping or the unauthorized Palestinian house takeovers, which are of course what Muslims / Jews should really be concentrating on.

But the municipality has its own side of the story.

According to the spokesman, the municipality has been facing a fierce campaign of incitement against its members since then with some of them receiving death threats.

A municipality official told the Post that many residents of Kalkilya had expressed their support for the ban, saying there was no place for such “immoral and corrupt events at a time when the Palestinians were suffering under Israeli occupation.”

Clearly, the best way to respond to the terrorist group currently denying the funk is to send in death threats. “Let us dance!” cry the youth of Palestine. “Let us dance or we will kill you!”

Interestingly, and proof that an appreciation for muddled pop psychology late-era Pink Floyd albums of questionable artistic merit is not only the domain of stoned Americans, the theme of the festival is “Another BREAK in the Wall,” a self-proclaimed statement of “cultural resistance to this grave monument of injustice.”

All I have to say is, when organizing cultural resistance to grave momuments of injustice, please remember to stay off the grass.

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  • Aside from the obvious metaphor of “tramplin’ the grass” as “smokin’ weed,” I feel obliged to point out something else. The Muslims and the Jews seem to both agree that dancing is a mortal enemy, as is Bacon. Doesn’t anyone remember the lessons of Footloose? Starring Kevin Bacon as a Chicago boy who moves to one of the “square states” and fights the ban on music and dancing? Someone needs to organize a movie night.

    Other songs for the “Cultural Resistance and Incitement Megamix”:

    When the Walls Come Tumblin’ Down-John Mellencamp
    Land of Confusion-Genesis
    Almost Paradise (Footloose Love Theme)-Mike Reno and Ann Wilson
    The Authority Song-John Mellencamp
    Should I Stay or Should I Go-The Clash
    All She Wants to Do Is Dance-Don Henley
    Dancing in the Street-David Bowie and Mick Jagger cover
    Jump Around-House of Pain
    Suspicious Minds-Elvis Presley
    Free to Be You and Me-Original Soundtrack

  • Ooh, a rebellious megamix! Between 65% and 90% of my reggae collection comes to mind…

    But if we’re going to be picking late-era Clash songs, I think “Rock the Casbah” would be much more appropriate.

    Degenerate the faithful with that crazy casbah souunnnddd! Hamas don’t like it! Rock Qalqilya, rock Qalqilya!

  • Be careful where you’re going with this, son. It may start with dancing and proceed to, you know, “gayness”. I’m sure Ben-David will agree with me.

  • The last time I saw video after a bus bombing, the PLO Arab men and woman were dancing without much concern for mixing of the sexes.