Scarlett Johansson resigns as Oxfam ambassador after SodaStream controversy

wenn20974728

Yesterday, I covered the multiple issues people were having with Scarlett Johansson’s recent endorsement deal/advertising campaign for SodaStream. The SodaStream commercial was banned from airing during the SuperBowl because ScarJo name-checked Coke and Pepsi in the ad (Coke later said they didn’t have a problem with it, so I guess Pepsi had the issue). I also mentioned that Scarlett is being heavily criticized because SodaStream has a production plant in the West Bank. Scarlett is an Oxfam ambassador, and Oxfam (along with many other human rights organizations) has criticized the use of the West Bank for Israeli commercial property. Oxfam issued a statement about ScarJo’s SodaStream ad, but the statement was basically like, “She’s free to do whatever she wants, but this whole thing is a disaster.” They did not push her out of Oxfam. But now she’s pulling out of Oxfam on her own:

Scarlett Johansson is ending her relationship with a humanitarian group after being criticized over her support for an Israeli company that operates in the West Bank.

A statement released by Johansson’s spokesman Wednesday said the 29-year-old actress has “a fundamental difference of opinion” with Oxfam International because the humanitarian group opposes all trade from Israeli settlements, saying they are illegal and deny Palestinian rights.

“Scarlett Johansson has respectfully decided to end her ambassador role with Oxfam after eight years,” the statement said. “She and Oxfam have a fundamental difference of opinion in regards to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement. She is very proud of her accomplishments and fundraising efforts during her tenure with Oxfam.”

Earlier this month, “The Avengers” and “Her” actress signed on as the first global brand ambassador of SodaStream International Ltd., and she’s set to appear in an ad for the at-home soda maker during the Super Bowl on Feb. 2.

SodaStream has come under fire from pro-Palestinian activists for maintaining a large factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, a territory captured by Israel in 1967 and claimed by the Palestinians.

In response to the criticism, Johansson said last week she was a “supporter of economic cooperation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine.”

Oxfam took issue with Johansson, noting it was “considering the implications of her new statement and what it means for Ms. Johansson’s role as an Oxfam global ambassador.”

Johansson had served as a global ambassador for Oxfam since 2007, raising funds and promoting awareness about global poverty. In her role as an Oxfam ambassador, she traveled to India, Sri Lanka and Kenya to highlight the impact of traumatic disasters and chronic poverty.

Oxfam representatives did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

[From The AP]

Many of you took me to task for saying that Scarlett’s previous statement in support of SodaStream was “realistic”. I still think it is. And I think her withdrawal from Oxfam is sad for both Scarlett and Oxfam. At the end of the day, the Israeli-Palestinian situation isn’t going to be solved because one American actress became a spokesperson for SodaStream and withdrew as an ambassador for Oxfam. She was raising money for them and working on their behalf about the 95% of issues they can agree on. This, to me, is throwing the baby out with the bath water. You’re going to throw away one of your ambassadors because she doesn’t agree with you about one the touchiest, most controversial and most complicated global issues in the world? And she’s going to walk away from eight years of humanitarian activism because she doesn’t agree with them? It’s sad. This could have been a teachable moment of nuance and education, but Oxfam and Scarlett both tapped out.

wenn20974736

wenn20975490

Photos courtesy of WENN.

 

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

152 Responses to “Scarlett Johansson resigns as Oxfam ambassador after SodaStream controversy”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

    • Tapioca says:

      Do you have the same problem with other celebrities endorsing clothing made in sweatshops, or other soda companies, or is it just because SodaStream have a factory in the West Bank?

      If you look closely A LOT of celebrities are happy to make nice little earner whilst gym clothes are made in collapsing factories in Bangladesh, or Coca-Cola hire goons to assassinate union officials in Colombia for asking for a living wage. Heck, you’d never eat chocolate or a banana again if you felt strongly enough about workers’ rights!

      At least Scarlett admitted to her hypocrisy and money-lust and quit the Oxfam gig.

    • Denise says:

      Well put. I agree with the post that an actress is not going to resolve the conflict, and yes you could leave it that. But if you’re going to take a stand, you need to maintain it. The fact that she chose an endorsement deal, so lots of money, over values doesn’t reflect well upon her. Then again, if she backs out of her contract she may not get others so easily, and as an actress thinking forward and seeing diminishing roles as she ages, she needs to work while she can. I can emphathise. I’d respect her greatly for leaving the endorsement deal behind to continue with Oxfam, and while what she did decide left a bad taste in my mouth, I’m not sure what I’d do in her position. I’m being realistic. I’m curious to see how Sodastream will handle this as it’s a massive PR mess especially after the ads were pulled; Scarlett’s face in their commercials will just remind people of the fiasco.

      • Kiddo says:

        I think she looked pretty desperate for taking the soda stream work in the first place. Honestly, before I knew of any political ramifications, it all came across as budget and I thought, wow, she must have hit a wall in her career.

      • chaine says:

        Replying to Kiddo, i agree. that’s what i thought, too. the fact that she is sticking with soda stream despite the ugly controversy makes it look even more as if she is in some kind of career/financial trouble. like when nicholas cage started doing all these bizarre cheesy movies because of his huge tax bill.

      • Shannon1972 says:

        Not necessarily. She just did the avengers and didn’t we hear a rumor of a black widow stand alone movie? She’s a fan fave…hardly on skid row, unlike Nicholas Cage. :)
        Perhaps she is bound by a contractual obligation? I’m sure the commercial wasn’t done on a handshake, and celeb endorsement campaigns usually encompass many different facets of PR over a set amount of time. She may not have had a choice, legally. If she bowed out, SodaStream could have potentially hit her for breach of contract and that could wind up costing her more than the contract was worth in legal fees and a long court battle that would have just been uglier. Just speculation on my part, based on the deals my husband has been involved in.
        Again, no win situation, in my opinion.

      • good buddy says:

        I am disappointed in her choice. It would have been classier to stick with Oxfam on this issue. What the Israelis have done to the Palestinians is worse than apartheid.

      • Lex says:

        You are assuming it would have been that easy… breaking a business contract could have serious ramifications. She can easily become affiliated with another charity if she chooses.

      • Pumpkin Pie says:

        I am sorry, it’s not ok to assume she is in “some kind of career/financial trouble”. It’s not ok.
        Maybe there are penalties (as a poster already pointed out) involved if she withdraws, and why judge her if she doesn’t want to pay penalties, or maybe her reputation as an endorser would suffer big time – and yes, why judge her for that? Or maybe she made an informed decision. I don’t think she’s stupid or ignorant. Let her be, she is not a criminal.
        That being said, there is a lot of hypocrisy in the charity world as well (I am not saying scarlett is hypocritical)
        ____
        sorry it was a reply to chaine’s post

      • jammypants says:

        I think her public statement makes it clear that her stance on the matter is that Sodastream promotes equal opportunity for BOTH Israel and Palestine. It’s a crazy idea, but in a way it unites the two sides for the same opportunities. This was not political until Oxfam made it so. And now that is has become political, I am seeing things a bit differently. There is one place (their plants) where both sides have to get along and work together in peace for the SAME opportunities. Once again, it seems utterly insane, but that’s my rationale. Her choice to stick with the soda company (in that linef of thinking) makes more sense. Putting personal feelings about the conflict aside, this is a very logical move. I do wonder. If in decades’ time, we finally see peace between the sides (theoretically), if this issue about an actress and her endorsement of a soda product that has one of its plants based in an area of conflict will seem like a spec in history, a petty one at that.

      • Algernon says:

        Except she’s working a ton right now. In big movies, in small movies, on Broadway. Her career seems fine. She’s always done endorsements and while I agree this one struck me as a bit budget, she’s always had a lot of ad campaigns.

        I think she signed an endorsement deal and either didn’t do due diligence or actually doesn’t care/sides with Israel and so was untroubled by the connections. And then it bit her on the ass, and now she’s “fixing” it as graciously as possible. undoubtedly Oxfam played a part in “letting” her resign. It’s a super complicated issue and I’m not going to pretend to understand it on a celebrity gossip blog.

      • Maureen says:

        I’m really surprised by how many comments here seem to indicate a belief that Scarlet chose unwisely in this issue. On the one hand, I’m reading a lot of comments regarding “sticking to what you believe”, but on the other hand these comments are followed by “she did a dumb thing”, or “she should have known better”, or “she chose money over ethics”.

        I am genuinely perplexed: Did it not occur to anyone that her decision to choose Sodastream over OxFam **was** an act of choosing ethics? That by standing by Sodastream she is making a stand for something she feels really strongly about and that in fact, she abandoned OxFam because she so strongly disagrees with them on an issue that is important to her? And perhaps, also, she doesn’t appreciate how they tried to publicly bully her for a decision she freely made to choose to rep a company she believes in and is a lifelong user of their product?

        I can be as cynical as the next person but I actually believe Scarlet made this choice based on a strongly-held belief — not money.

      • Vanessa says:

        We thought she was stupid, not evil. We were giving her the benefit of doubt.

    • Janet Planet says:

      Nothing to you, maybe, but in breach of international law to the rest of the world. What Israel is doing to Palestine is called genocide and should not be tolerated.

  1. Ag says:

    So, the bottom line is the bottom line? Screw humanitarian work for some soda cash? Or does she feel THAT strongly about Israeli/Palestinian issues? I somehow doubt it’s the latter.

    • jensies says:

      I thought the same thing. I doubt this difference of opinion pre-dated her paycheck.

    • Shannon1972 says:

      It’s not that simple. Scarlett is Jewish, so this is issue is much more complicated than it looks on the surface, and the ramifications are hard to predict no matter what she did.
      Once the info of the SodaStream West Bank factory came to light, she was essentially in a no win situation. I can’t see any celebrity wanting to wade into that mess over an endorsement.
      Oxfam is about much more than just the Palestinian / Israeli conflict, and I can’t shade her for the work she has already done on their behalf. Plenty of celebrities do nothing at all. It’s just sad she had to end it this way. I’d like to think that she would have rather there been a way to continue with Oxfam.

      • Decloo says:

        This is true. Scarlett would be skewered by Jewish groups if she backed out of her deal with SodaStream because of ethical issues. She already looks bad for her association with that company but right-wing Jewish groups would label her a traitor to Israel otherwise. She would be screwed either way which is the reason she should never have forged the association with SodaStream in the first place. Dumb girl.

      • BestJess says:

        It is not remotely complicated. The West Bank is illegally occupied land. Soda Stream is operating in breach go the Geneva Conventions.

        Oxfam explicitly opposes trade in settlement products. They can not partner with someone that profits from an activity they oppose. Oxfam does not however have a position on the BDS campaign so SJ is either uninformed or a liar.

    • FLORC says:

      She may have been backed into a corner by her contract with SodaStream too.
      Maybe there was no easy way out except to step away from Oxfam.
      But it is the easiest route to just say she’s siding with the ones who will pay her more. Sometimes there’s just more to the issue.

      Either way she was not educated about the companies locations and worker conditions. That’s like being a paid representative of a company that doesn’t hide the fact it uses child labor.
      And from her statement and how close the wording was to previous SodaStream statements on that topic I doubt it was from her at all.

      Ultimately, by ScarJo taking the money from SodaStream and bringing attention to this whole issue might be a blow the company will have to address in a very public way instead of hoping it’s forgotten.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      What most people don’t realize is that this company is employing Palestians at an equal salary to the Israelis it hires. It also gives them health care. Is there ANY Palestianian company doing the same?? Sheesh!

      • Imqrious2 says:

        Also, what most people don’t remember, very conveniently, is there is NOT an “indigenous” Palestianian people! That territory was part of Jordan before the 1948 UN resolution bringing Israel back to its homeland. Arabs left refuges there to keep a “simmering pot” of unrest, to this day.

      • Mich says:

        Yeah. If only more people would take self-serving press releases at face value, right?!?

        I’m not going to fault you for wanting to see some good in all of this but SodaStream is not an altruistic player here. It is breaking international law and acting contrary to the Geneva Convention. Notice how the company doesn’t mention the tax and government incentives, cheap rent and lowered labor guidelines it is benefiting from.

      • Maureen says:

        +2 to both your comments, @Imqrious

        It is a very, very complex issue. There are so many false details to the regular narrative we hear about, and I rarely ever meet anyone who knows the full story of the creation of the Territories, the origin of the word “Palestine/Palestinian”, and the origins of the current “mid east conflict”. I stopped arguing and debating about it years ago because of this. You can’t play cards without a full deck, and you can’t have an honest debate about an issue without all the historical data.

      • 123 says:

        @Imriquois:
        The The Sykes–Picot Agreement outlines how the Middle East was first cut up by imperial Europe, leading to the creation of Israel.
        There are indigenous Palestinian people. Talk to one. Talk to one and ask them what happened to their houses and family members. Just talk to one, and if you can, talk to more. Stop spewing narratives of your liking without seeking anyone else’s voice. You can discuss military victories by Israel, and claim that “to the victor go the spoils,” but you cannot pretend that the people never existed. The Iraqi, Jordanian, etc borders, along with Israel, were created by European imperialists.

      • BestJess says:

        OMG the “there are no indigenous Palestinian people” nonsense.

        People have lived in the area of the Levant, now called Israel/Palestinian for thousands of years. There were human settlements and villages long before any Hebrews arrived. There was a very small very short lived Hebrew Kingdom there. There have been many many others that both predate and are subsequent to that Hebrew Kingdom. Throughout many of these times/rulers the area was named various versions of Palestine/Philistine/Falasteen.

        Some people who lived there eventually converted to Christianity, others, later to Islam. Some, a very small minority, remained Jewish.

        It is abject nonsense to claim that a Jewish person from Brooklyn, who *may* be descended from people who lived in the area 2000 years ago can return to their “homeland” whilst someone violently expelled from the area their families had lived consistently for thousands of years can not return because he is not Jewish.

      • Leen says:

        Thank Imoquirs for saying I ‘don’t’ exist and I am not indigenous. I’m Palestinian, and I can trace my heritage and ancestral lineage from the Byzantine time (that’s 550 AD btw). My village where my ancestors are from is over 1500 years old and used to be one of the earliest Christian settlements before the Muslim arrival in the holy land (my ancestors decided to convert).
        So, next time, don’t come and tell me that ‘there is no such thing as indigineous Palestinians’, because I can trace my lineage and heritage for thousands of years, and believe me other Palestinians can too (and some have Jewish ancestors too. One of my good friends who is Palestinian, both her grandmothers were Jewish women – one Persian, the other Ashkenazi, who married into a Palestinian family.. which means by Halakha law she is Jewish). My other good friend who is Palestinian, her grandmother was a Jewish German who actually was a holocaust survivor but married a Palestinian. So, yes, even Palestinians have Jewish relatives.

      • Nikita says:

        How many palestinian companys have a company in israel to employ israelis? Kind of naive what you say. It is iligal and wrong what they do, period. I understand that jews want their own country but you have to deal with the fact that this country wasnt empty and we don not live in 1650! Its 2014!
        To me, sj’s move only shows that shes a typical rich american actress who does “good” for her image. She could support israelian companys who are in israel and not in palestina.

    • ol cranky says:

      she left Oxfam, that doesn’t mean she won’t find another worth organization where she can do some humanitarian work

  2. Brown Eyed Girl says:

    I think its good she resigned after being a hypocrite. Im not too educated on those politics but it seems to me that whole israel-palestinian fight is sort of what happened here in the US with the American immigrants building on/taking Native lands. Its hard for Americans to wag their finger when this country basically did the same thing a couple hundred years ago.
    Both sides handle it poorly though and really it will take some Martin Luther King/Gandhi non violent figure from both sides to come about and bring change.

    Scarlett Johannson is not that Ghandi type person. Good on Oxfam for actually standing up to a celebrity in some way.

    • bluecatplate says:

      Agreed. Celebrities who complain about fame and then endorse products are very hypocritical to me. I think she has a much shallower understanding of international politics than she likes to let on.

      She wants so much to be smarter than she is. Poor dear.

    • Diana says:

      that’s what keeps the integrity of a serious NGO like Oxfam is. They have to be consistant or else they’ll lose their credibility. Good on them for standing up for what they fight for.

      • mercy says:

        Yes they do. I recognise that the Israeli – Palestinian conflict is very complex and multi-faceted, but I will take a respected humanitarian organisation like Oxfam’s word on the matter over celebrities and profiteers.

      • ol cranky says:

        @Mercy when I was younger I did some volunteering for amnesty. I was pretty much told that I had to publicly support everything for which they stand 100% and I was expected to sign a statement protesting the death penalty against someone when I didn’t know the specifics of the case (when I was asked I was given a whirlwind of some very obviously biased statements). I’m not a fan of the death penalty (especially when given to people of color in states like Texas) but I am not 100% against the death penalty in every case and I refused to make public statements saying as much. I was also given a hard time because I believe that Israel does have a right to safe and secure boarders and didn’t appreciate the assertion that I’m some sort of “Arab-hating evil Jew”. Needless to say, I haven’t done any volunteer work of any sort for Amnesty, nor have I donated to them since. I have found other worthwhile organizations that I can support in good conscience and I’m a nobody. I’m sure a rich famous person like ScarJo will be able to find other worthy organizations that perform humanitarian work.

    • BettyBlue says:

      Completely agreed. So glad they parted company. Thus isn’t just ‘throwing away one if your ambassadors’ because of a minor issue. The treatment of Palestinians by the state of Israel (not critiquing the Jewish religion here- just the domestic politics of Israel) is getting into apartheid territory. See you Charlotte!

  3. jinni says:

    I am more likely to believe she just didn’t want to give back the money she got for being spokesperson for the soda company. I kind of side eye her for giving up 8 years with Oxfam for an endorsement. If she felt so strongly about Palestine and Israel co-operating why would she join Oxfam in the first place knowing their opinion on the subject? Her reason for leaving sounds false to me.

  4. Mia4S says:

    Oh let’s face it Scarlett tapped out because she chose the money she makes as a soda pop spokesmodel over a humanitarian organization she worked eight years for. Oxfam just stuck to their guns.

    Then again, I didn’t expect much from Scarlett so whatever. But seriously does Marvel pay THAT badly? It says something that you don’t see Streep or Blanchett doing these lower level endorsements.

    • Marty says:

      Yep! She totally chose the money. What I can’t understand is why though? It’s not like she’s not a successful actress. Is what SodaStream offering really worth the eight years with Oxfam?

      • Kelly says:

        Sad fact is some people will ALWAYS choose the money, no matter how much of it they already have. I guess for them, you can never have too much of it.

      • ctkat1 says:

        I think she didn’t do her due diligence before signing on with SodaStream, and didn’t realize that this would be an issue when she took the endorsement deal. When the criticism came, someone on her team (likely with a big assist by a SodaStream PR firm) came up with the “statement position” that she released regarding her “thoughts” on Israel/Palestine. I don’t think she has a lot of nuanced, educated thought about the issue, because if she had, she would likely have avoided endorsing SodaStream all together. Basically, I think she liked the product and wanted the $$, had to take a pro SodaStream position when the criticism came, and now she’s locked into that position when challenged by Oxfam.
        Perhaps it would have been better for her to respond to the criticism by releasing a statement that she was hearing people’s concerns, and she was going to meet with some experts on the issue to get a clearer understanding, at which time she would respond. This might have allowed her to consider things like her position would put her in direct conflict with her humanitarian work.

    • Kiddo says:

      There was a blind about an actress who could once name her price, but now will take anything, and when I initially saw this commercial, I thought of Scarlet. Maybe its not about her, but I was thinking that this soda stream commercial was completely uncomfortably cheesy. I know even big actors take ridiculous endorsements, but it seems like they mostly do the really embarrassing ones overseas, like in Japan, where it escapes the US audience.

    • The Wizz says:

      You know what I’d choose the money too. Sad but true. Many of us would.

    • jj says:

      I think she signed up for a multiple movie deal early on with Marvel and I doubt she makes much money from that. Since her carer is basically based on her looks and sex appeal and not on talent she has to make money while she still got some looks. Having said that, even celebs have to draw the line somewhere and unfortunately in this case she is just choosing money over human rights issues, which giving that she was never much about substance doesn’t surprise me that much.

    • Miffy says:

      Totally, the only things I’m shocked by here are:

      1) SodaStream is still around?! Really? I haven’t seen one of those since the 80s!

      2) SodaStream is not only around but an endorsement deal worth looking like a money-grubbing hypocrite for.

      She’s not going to come out of this one unscathed. You wouldn’t see La Jolie ditching her career boosting charity schtick to shill DIY fizzy drinks.

  5. snowylioness says:

    I think it was very nice of Oxfam to not fire her but instead let her resign. That way she can save face (and after eight years as their ambassador, this is a proper way to end their partnership). At least this is how I think that the whole thing played out.

  6. dizzylucy says:

    It’s a shame they couldn’t agree to disagree on that particular issue, and focus on good work in other areas.

    • Kimble says:

      I think you have to realise how strongly some people feel about Palestine – it’s not like Oxfam can just ignore it – it’s a HUGE deal not just a little faux pas or hiccup!!!!!

    • Kiddo says:

      I think they might do better with a different celebrity representing them. I never heard anything about this collaboration, so the parting of the ways has been good exposure for Oxfam. Scarlet looks bad, and they look better by having dropped her.

      • Mich says:

        Oxfam is one of the biggest names in the world. Their Ambassadors include Annie Lennox, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Bill Nighy, Colin Firth, Djimon Hounsou, Gael García Bernal and Helen Mirren. Johannsson stood to gain far more from the partnership than they ever did.

    • Ice Maiden says:

      It’s not about ‘other areas’ (and btw I should add that Oxfam America has no programmes in Palestine, and does not contribute a single cent to Palestinian charities). You can’t trample all over human rights and international law in one country, and claim to respect them in another. Oxfam should have cut Johansson loose the day she signed up with Sodastream, a company which profits from an illegal military occupation. Either you respect international law, or you do not. You can’t pick and choose.

  7. Frida_K says:

    Taking her marbles and going home just because she wants the dollars from soda stream and she’s not about to tolerate any questions from anyone about it?

    Hm.

    That says a lot about Ms. Johansson, it really does.

  8. Mich says:

    Dear Scarlett: Fizzy water does not trump human rights and what is going on in the occupied territories is despicable.

    I support the boycott and will never see another movie she is in.

    SodaStream gets MASSIVE financial incentives for being located in the occupied territories and anything they say to spin it otherwise is at best a half truth.

    p.s. I am really interested to see what the response is on this thread from community members around the world. The way the Israel/Palestine story is reported in America is NOTHING like what the rest of the world sees.

    • Kimble says:

      THANK YOU! I can’t believe how dismissive people on this thread are … like it’s no big problem that she did this!

      I am an Englishwoman living in the US, and smdh at how santized the US media is … however, this is no excuse now we have the internet and are able to take an interest in what is happening outside of these borders.

    • Diana says:

      Exactly Mitch. It truly baffles me the way some americans see this issue; what Israel does is so plain wrong that I can’t figure out how people racionalize it.

    • Mich says:

      @ Kimble and Diana

      Before moving to South Africa in 2000 (from the States), I had literally never seen the Palestine side of the story reported. Never. And I’m a news and politics junkie. My eyes were opened real fast once I left. It is telling that the ANC in South Africa is 100% pro-boycott and calls what is happening in the region “Apartheid”.

      • Oh La La says:

        I applaud everything you guys just said. I consider it an apartheid too. The way that the Israelis treat the Palestinians is absolutely disgusting and unjustified.

      • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

        Yep–I’m in America now, and the only thing I’ve ever heard about Israel was when my former pastor would go on and on about how we basically need to side w/Israel because they’re God’s chosen, and in the news when they searched a boat (I think from Iran) ilegally, and found weapons–the boat was supposed to be humanitarian aid, or something–this was years ago.

        But I’ve never believed that you should blindly support a country, just because. Like one of the things I heard, from my history teacher, when we were talking about the Gaza strip—she said (I might be getting this a little wrong) that the reason the Israelis and Palestinians were fighting over it, was because of water–the Gaza strip has the main source of water for the surrounding countries. And Israel has control over it, and was limiting how much water that the people they didn’t like got—and also the Palestinians that live there don’t get use a fraction of the amount of water that the Israelis get to use.

        Which I think is wrong, and shocked me, because I had never heard it before.

      • We Are All Made of Stars says:

        Come on, people, you can’t seriously tell me that you haven’t heard anything about the Palestinian side of the argument in the States. The media certainly spins a pro-Israel story due to our decades-long political commitment to the Israeli state, but I think the days of a shiny, happy, perfectly flawless image of the role of Israel have been gone for awhile. Online news blogs will give a less biased account of the situation, and Bill Maher et. al are usually very critical of the pro-Israel stance, insofar as the stance is one-sided.

      • Mich says:

        @We Are All Made of Stars

        I was pretty clear that the year I was talking about was 2000 and I stand by what I said. Even now, the coverage in the US MSM in no way mirrors what is reported internationally. I have no idea who you are or where you live but if you are basing your rebuttal solely on US experience then you aren’t working with enough information. Even the version of CNN that is broadcast here is vastly different from what is broadcast everywhere else in the world.

      • FLORC says:

        We Are All Made Of Stars

        People get their news from Bill Maher?! Is that actually someone you think totes enough credibility for people to use him as a real news source?
        I live in the states now and can confirm, Bill Maher is a joke and not well liked. He’s a pundit that saying things to shock regardless of accuracy.

        Mich
        We do get the $h!t end of the stick on news coverage, don’t we? I do like the CNN joke slogan. It’s not news. It’s CNN.

    • Lolo-ology says:

      Given just how differently, minimally, and how deeply slanted our American media portrays anything regarding Israel/Palestine/West Bank, I wonder if it’s possible that she just simply has no clue. It certainly explains the ambivalent reaction of most Americans. She probably just gave what she thought was an egalitarian answer, without really understanding what she was saying/what it means/anything?

      • Mich says:

        You are probably right about having no clue when she signed on to be their spokesmodel but I’m sure Oxfam went into overtime trying to educate her before going public to denounce the partnership. She might get a pass for this in the apathetic/ignorant US but she is going to be flayed internationally for years to come.

      • GreenTurtle says:

        Mich, yes, our news is slanted, but calling the United States (U.S. is an adjective) itself ignorant and apathetic is pretty insulting. You are stereotyping. There are plenty of valid arguments to be made on this issue without being insulting.

      • Lolo-ology says:

        Yeah she certainly doesn’t get a pass for it. I just don’t think she was trying to make a deliberate statement, as some people seem to be interpreting it.

      • Valery says:

        Sorry, Green Turtle, stereotypes are bad. Still, last time i checked ignorant and apathetic weren’t the worst of insults out there.
        And if you got a problem with the popular perception, take it with the rightful offenders. Who underreport on Occupy, worker strikes and all sorts of social and global issues that happen to be outside their corporate interests. Sure, it’s not the common American’s fault for being misinformed but it doesn’t make it right in the grand scheme of things.
        American corporate media are biased, dangerous and riled with malfeasance. The truth hurts, but one should acknowledge it, rather than throw a tantrum. And funny enough, we’re on a gossip site about Hollywood celebrities, Hollywood as you know, is not exactly the land of political correctness, unless you’re a cis, white dude.

      • GreenTurtle says:

        Valery, ignorant and apathetic are not the worst insults out there? That’s subjective, and they are insults nonetheless. If I assault you, do I get a pass because it’s not murder? People who buy into, and repeat popular “perceptions” are also responsible for their actions in doing so, regardless of whether or not they are the true “offenders”. You can’t call someone ignorant in one breath and then perpetuate a stereotype in another. Calling someone out on such a remark is not throwing a tantrum, though one might argue that you were doing essentially the same thing in your response to mine. CB is a gossip site, but everyone who is a regular here knows that we uphold a high standard for respectful discourse. People comment on this ALL the time. The usual response is “ZOMG, this is a gossip site- whatever!” i.e. “Stop holding me responsible for my offensive comments!” Also, I never said the U.S. media were not completely biased, overtaken by political agendas, and generally the mouthpiece of big business/big lobby. I was not disputing that and “throwing a tantrum over it”. My main sources of international news are not U.S.-owned or -based, with good reason. I was responding solely to the zero sum statement that the United States is ignorant and apathetic.

      • Mich says:

        @ GreenTurtle

        For rills? I’m an American citizen who chose to live around the world. Doing so opened my eyes to where my own very powerful but very isolated country gets it wrong. And, trust me, being out there has subjected me to far more abuse about America than anything I have said here. Rather than see any merit in what I’m saying you cry ‘unfair!’ and for what reason? Because my opinion sounds mean?

        Fact does not equal stereotype and the world does not stand with the US when it comes to opinion about the occupation. The world also didn’t stand with the US about the war in Iraq. Who was right there?

      • Valery says:

        GreenTurtle
        Please, that’s a false equivalence. You’re offended on behalf of the nation?
        And how exactly am I throwing a tantrum, you’re the one being overly argumentative. The other person didn’t go after a person here, he/she made a biased or whatever statement based on the perception of the news media. If the people would sanction the media abuses, maybe some of the news wouldn’t be so slated. And it doesn’t have to be a complete corporate take-over, it can also be a bipartisan consensus on certain issues, that takes out said issues from the media discourse.

      • GreenTurtle says:

        As I said above, Mich, I support every bit of your point- I didn’t cry unfair- I said calling the United States ignorant and apathetic is unnecessary and a stereotype- it demeans your otherwise strong argument, not unlike an ad hominem argument. I stand by that. I’m an American- a well-informed one at that- who has lived overseas and traveled often- not unlike you, apparently. Being annoyed at being called ignorant and apathetic, Valery, is not being overly argumentative. I also used zero false analogies.

      • FLORC says:

        I have dual citizenship with US and Greece and lived in Germany and Australia Mich and I take no offence to your post. Sadly, I think it’s spot on. For the most part this is our nation. Incredibly apathetic. It’s also not far from how the world views us.

    • Valery says:

      To quote an IMDB member on Scarjo’s page, “just showed how much people, who are not involved, don’t care. Awkward, but true”. The reaction is not awkward, is pathetic, because the majority of the commentators, also tend to be those couch activists, bitching about the poor whales, the Haitians, the oil spills and what have you.

      And this is not even about people’s right to free speech as in “well you’re ignorant, so you shouldn’t open your mouth about matters you either don’t know anything or you’re poorly informed/ brainwashed by the Kardashians”. Or international politics’ tendency to parlay in double standards and hypocrisy.

      It’s not even about Scarlett’s hypocrisy, greed, ignorance and general attitude. Ultimately it’s about getting caught with the cake and wanting to eat it too. Claiming how those Palestinians get equal pay in a place created by design to disrupt the West Bank and to bury a potential Palestinian state, is the ultimate slap in the face (i’m referring to the whole occupied area, not only to the factory).

      What I find really pathetic, is the attitude regarding this controversy and how it back fired and it’s all the better for Soda Stream and Scarlett and to hell with empathy and basic common sense. You don’t even have to read the sources favorable to the Palestinians, you can just skim the official documents on this matter and see how messed the whole thing truly is.

      So sure, it’s not about an actress bringing peace to the peasants, or an NGO trying to raise money for the humanitarian causes it chooses to focus on (N.B. Oxfam had no problem firing Kristin Davis on a similar matter), or even the company trying to sell its product. It’s about true colors.

  9. Kelly says:

    It seems she’d rather get paid millions by appearing in a commercial instead of doing free humanitarian work. Oh well, why am I surprised.
    And I side with Oxfam on this, sorry Scarlett. There’s enough space on the planet to build factories, you don’t really have to exploit the occupied war zones. I don’t care how cheap they are.

  10. TheOneandOnlyOnly says:

    Maybe this is why celebs shouldn’t front these campaigns. As for Oxfam’s position, much has been written about the divestment movement, and it has been pointed out endlessly that most Arab/Muslim countries have worse to much worse human rights violations than Israel. Saudia Arabia stages public beheadings and women aren’t allowed to drive, yet through their embassy they staged a wonderful art exhibit in my hometown last fall (I attended) and no one called for a boycott due to their internal policies.
    The analogy between the European migration, settlement, and conquest of the Americas and the settlement in Palestine a hundred years ago by jewish settlers is off the mark; they occurred in completely different historical settings. Argument by analogy is always treacherous because it assumes what it should attempt to demonstrate – that the analogy obtains the first place. The great philosopher Bertrand Russell had a great argument showing how the analogy often made between the US and the USSR to Athens and Sparta during the cold war was completely strained and off the mark.

    • Kiddo says:

      I think it’s never a good argument to say, “Look over there, someone else is worse than us!”. Pointing out abuses in other countries doesn’t justify abuses in one’s own country. You are either against abuses and you care about humanity or you don’t. And I feel that way about the US, where we somehow say torture is okay to get answers, killing people quietly in the night without due process is okay, or droning of innocents is okay because, look over there!, and so on. Abuse is abuse. Injustice is injustice, regardless of mangled analogies.

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      I agree Kiddo–what I don’t understand is that if you’re going to join something like Oxfam–EDUCATE yourself. I would never join an organization like that, especially in the public eye, if I didn’t agree/didn’t care about their position in most everything. Did she really need the money that badly? I was thinking about getting one of those Sodastreams, as I’m trying to quit drinking as much soda–it’s not working out too good— but I won’t be buying one of those things now, or ever. Ugh—just don’t tell me Amazon has sweatshops somewhere.

      • minime says:

        An off topic to answer your last line:
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21488816
        I saw the documentary and it was pretty sad. Big companies unfortunately get away with a lot of shit.

        In the end I think Scarlett Johansson did a really good job to Oxfam, because (not purposely) she raised awareness for a thing that few knew and in the end the company is looking worse than it was. I have a Sodastream machine, but now that I know about this I refuse to buy anything else from them and I’m sure this applies to a lot of people. That’s the worse publicity they could have gotten. I hope this makes them revise their company principles.

    • Kelly says:

      Your first paragraph makes an analogy and your second one states “argument by analogy is always treacherous ” – LOL

      • TheOneandOnlyOnly says:

        Wrong Kelly the first paragraph simply points out that there are worse human rights violators in the Arab world; I’m not saying that Israel is like Saudia Arabia or vice versa, or that their internal politics are the same at all.
        And that still begs the question as to why Israel is being singled out when Syria’s use of poison gas on it’s own people rouses few to march and demonstrate;
        and if you are against abuses you have to address them everywhere, and what’s happening in Syria is far worse than Israel.
        Again where is the outrage over the mass atrocities being committed in Syria.

      • Kiddo says:

        I don’t think anyone brought up Syria in this thread because no celebrity is currently endorsing a product from there. But that is not to say that people are perfectly copacetic with human rights violations there. It’s just incredibly non sequitur to bring Syria up under a thread about ScarJo and the product she is representing. Is Oxfam not addressing concern on those issues?

  11. sa says:

    I generally don’t like Scarlett Johansson, but I respect her position here. I don’t know what she knew/didn’t know before the controversy, but I think many would just try to back away from it without giving it more thought than not wanting to be involved in a controversy. I appreciate that she didn’t have that knee jerk reaction. I don’t know much about her, but I am assuming that she has at least some understanding of the situation (which many who comment about it don’t have) and she probably has her own views on it. I don’t imagine that her pay from SodaStream is so significant that she’d stay connected to them if she disagreed with them.

  12. mercy says:

    I suppose Oxfam was good publicity for her, but when they weren’t anymore she chose the money for shilling a soda machine? Nothing about this should surprise me, I guess. I wanted very much to like her after LITr, but she lost me a long time ago with her ego, pretentiousness, and just an overall phony vibe. She’s not a good enough actress to counter all of that.

  13. Lindy says:

    Scarlett is Jewish. Her mother is Jewish, and she identifies as Jewish. Normally, that’s no one’s business but her own, but in this case, her heritage may affect the way she sees the Israeli-Palestinan situation in general and the Soda Stream case in particular.

    • mercy says:

      Maybe, but the people I know who identify as Jewish, and with whom I’ve had conversations on this subject, generally support Israel and don’t support the settlements.

      • Lindy says:

        Here’s an article that discusses reaction to the Soda Stream case within the American Jewish community. FYI, Scarlett helped Scott Stringer his most recent campaign, hosting several campaign events.

        http://mondoweiss.net/2014/01/scarlett-johansson-settlements.html

      • Shannon1972 says:

        I’m Jewish, and I am very ambivalent about the settlements. It is far from simple. However, I think Scarlett did the only thing she could do and step down. I don’t think it was greed, and she is a successful, educated woman – not someone who blindly follows a paycheck. I think it was a well thought out decision by her and her team, and they decided that this was the least damaging exit strategy for all involved.
        The Israeli / Palestinian conflict is not something to take on lightly, and I’m surprised at the shade she is getting since she has actually been doing humanitarian work, rather than just sitting back and counting her millions.

    • Alexis says:

      Yes, but why did she sign on with Oxfam years ago, knowing their position on this key issue? A Israel hardliner wouldn’t have done that. Honestly her being Jewish makes her more likely to be sensitive to or aware of this issue rather than less. Or, if her opinions evolved on the issue, she would have withdrawn at that point, before signing with soda stream. This is kind of a big deal, hard to miss. I honestly think she didn’t have much of an opinion on it before this kerfluffle, and so she took the money and ran.

      • Shannon1972 says:

        How likely is it that she knew that SodaStream had a factory in the West Bank? They paid her to do a commercial, but does that mean that she has to search out every international factory or facility of the company? I don’t think that’s reasonable.
        She made a mistake, and wound up entangled in a conflict that very few want to wade into. I don’t blame her for making her exit. Oxfam is about eradicating poverty and disease all over the world, not just in Palestine. And no matter how a person feels about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, I don’t think it is hypocritical to be involved with an organization that provides humanitarian relief. Personally, I didn’t know they had a definite stance on the issue one way or the other. I thought they helped where they were needed and left the politics aside. I guess that is hard to do.

  14. Ellen says:

    [I was posting at the same time that Lindy was.]

    Johansson’s father is Danish but her mother is Jewish American (from the Bronx). So I don’t think this is only about the money — Johansson has an opinion about Israeli settlement/corporate expansion in the West Bank and she recognizes that it conflicts with Oxfam’s stand.

    There are American Jews on every side of the settlement issue. I’m not saying I agree with her (or that I disagree). I am only saying that I STRONGLY doubt that Johansson chose to break with Oxfam ONLY because she wanted her Sodastream money.

  15. Ice Maiden says:

    ” You’re going to throw away one of your ambassadors because she doesn’t agree with you about one the touchiest, most controversial and most complicated global issues in the world?”

    I’ll repeat what I said several times yesterday: building on occupied territory is a war crime according to the 4th Geneva Conventions. This is a fact. There’s nothing controversial or complicated about it. And don’t take my word for it: consult the UN or any other international legal organisation, every single one of whom regards Israel’s West Bank ‘settlements’ as a crime under international law.

    In sticking with Johansson, Oxfam would in effect have been saying that they’re quite happy for someone to profit from war crimes (which is essentially what Johansson was doing) so long as she’s a celeb. That is an entirely untenable position for a humanitarian organisation, and my only regret is that Oxfam didn’t sever ties with Johansson weeks ago, rather than the other way round. Doe eyed ‘actresses’ come and go, but human rights are, or should be, here to stay. ‘Nuance’ and military occupation don’t really go together.

  16. kellyinseattle says:

    Just wondering….despite the politics, has anyone here ever tried sodastream? I thought it looked like a hassle and not very good anyway.

  17. Sam says:

    I tend to side with Oxfam. It’s an organization that is run coalition-style. It depends a great deal on credibility and reputation and goodwill among the smaller organizations on the ground. If Palestinian organizations develop a jaded or critical view of Oxfam based upon their relationship with ScarJo, that can impact the organization’s ability to bring the critical relief to a lot of people. I respect Oxfam’s ability to keep its credibility intact more than I can respect an actor’s right to make a buck. This isn’t about whether ScarJo likes to use the SodaStream personally – if she did, that wouldn’t be an issue. It’s about her choice to endorse the company and make a buck. I side with a respected non-profit over that.

  18. ladybug says:

    Scarlett is half-Jewish, so this no doubt affected her decision. But folks, to gain some perspective, you need to understand what the BDS (Boycott, divestment, and Sanctions) movement is and why it is so particularly virulent and dangerous.

  19. StaceyP says:

    My take on this is Oxfam decided to get rid of her, but did the ‘nice’ thing by allowing her to resign, so she could ‘save face’.

  20. K says:

    To repeat what others on this site have posted: Scarlett’s mother is Jewish… Ashkenazi Jewish at that. My degrees are not in history, so please correct me if I am wrong: my understanding is that the bulk of the Jews killed in the Holocaust were Ashkenazi. And we know that those particular events of WWII led to creation of Israel.

    Agree with Scarlett, agree with Oxfam, whatever. But don’t accuse Scarlett of being oblivious, hypocritical, or making the decision based on monetary gain.

    • mercy says:

      You can support Israel and understand the reasons for its existence and still not agree with settlements. If she disagreed with Oxfam’s position, she shouldn’t have agreed to become an ambassador.

      • Lou says:

        I support Israel’s right to exist and think most Arab countries were completely irrational in their reaction to the creation of Israel and their treatment of it once it had been established. Israel is right to defend itself from a constant threat of destruction.

        But that doesn’t make the settlements right. There’s some horrible stuff happening there. This is a complex situation and Scarlett should’ve done her research. However, she’s right to withdraw from Oxfam if they can’t agree, although it’s a shame it’s done because of a tacky soda company. I don’t want to criticise her without knowing her views.

        (BTW, this is all just my humble opinion in regards to the conflict. Both sides have made catastrophic mistakes, and I hope it can be resolved peacefully, so that there are no more human rights abuses. It’s just such a sad situation all around.)

  21. horizonte says:

    Not to WK Scarlett or anything, but she is jewish, so it’s very possible that she feels strongly about supporting the company on that basis. A lot of jews I know feel the same way.

  22. Myrto says:

    @Tapioca: completely agree with you. I had never heard of Sodastream until today so I guess their products aren’t sold where I live (Europe) but I find the whole outrage ridiculous. Where are people protesting against McDonalds, a company that pays its workers so poorly? Or Amazon that destroys bookshops and barely pays any taxes in proporion with the amount of money they actually make? Or are we supposed to be outraged because it’s about Israel and Palestine?
    I did a little research on Sodastream and they’re not as bad as most companies (ok I realize that’s not a high praise, but we’re talking about companies).

  23. olivia says:

    I’m just curious are the people who are up in arms over this boycotting all things made in countries with human rights violations? Like say China for example. You know the country that basically makes everything. I’m sure many people aren’t thinking about the suicide nets in apple factories when they are playing candy crush on their iphone.

    • Kiddo says:

      Having no choice but to select products from China because they are ubiquitous, and because there are scant alternatives, doesn’t equate into rubber stamping the process. But I do, as a consumer, try to limit as best as I can. Actively promoting a product and getting paid to do so is a much bigger endorsement and comes with increased responsibility.

      As to Apple, yes, that weighs heavily upon me. But NO computers/phones are completely manufactured in this country. That is a huge problem. Phones and computers have become a necessity, not a luxury. Clothing is a necessity. Soda machines are far from that.

    • Valery says:

      In this case, it’s not about boycotting products made in Israel per se, but the products made in the occupied territories. It’s a clear distinction.
      And by the way, everybody’s free to boycott whatever country they choose, but in this case the American actor did not happen to endorse a Chinese product made in Tibet.

  24. The Original Mia says:

    I respect both Scarlett & OXFAM’s positions & decisions.

  25. Bridget says:

    Does it not occur to anyone that Scarlett Johansson could also just be pro-Israel, which isn’t an unheard of stance in this country? It wouldn’t be a huge shock, considering that 1) she’s Jewish and 2) she’s friends with Natalie Portman.

    The part tha disappoints me on this thread is how few people actually have a real idea of what’s goimg on over there, beyond what their pastors tell them, beyond what national and international news says. There’s a lot of immediate condemnation here without even knowing the century worth of delicate geo-political history. There’s a reason why the issue hasn’t been solved yet. Pro Israel, pro- Palestine, Educate yourselves, folks. That’s the best thing you can do.

    • ladybug says:

      Thank you! BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) was brought to my college campus last year. The controversy with BDS is that they are not your run-of-the-mill divestment movement. Omar Barghouti launched the BDS movement and he has called for the destruction of the state of Israel and also rejects a two-state solution. http://blogs.jpost.com/content/bds-opposes-two-state-solution-arab-israel-conflict

      Their chant, which I heard on my college campus, was “From the River to the Sea, Palestine Will Be Free.” “From the River to the Sea” implies the destruction of Israel. BDS brought a climate of hate, anti-Semitism, and fear to my campus last year and it also perpetuated many falsehoods about this incredibly complex geo-political conflict. I am Jewish, lost many relatives in the Holocaust, and have family living in Israel, so needless to say this an issue that is very close to my heart. But it is not unusual for someone to oppose BDS. You can oppose the settlements, Israeli policy, or even support boycotts, but BDS is extremely hateful. It is another issue entirely to oppose BDS.

  26. Renee28 says:

    If she supports SodaStream, she turns off a lot of people. If she supports Oxfam, she risks turning off Jewish people. It’s a lose/lose situation. Also, if she has a contract with SodaStream she probably can’t just walk away. There are probably financial penalties for doing so.

  27. BettyBlue says:

    Also, not that Sean Penn is a catch in any way, but if she revealed herself as Ill educated and feckless then no wonder he dumped her otherwise fine ass.

  28. dahlianoir says:

    We now know how much her integrity is worth.

  29. Maureen says:

    DISCLAIMER: I’m a big supporter of Israel (I could give a really long laundry list of reasons, but this isn’t the right forum) and I make a point to BUYcott Israeli products on a regular basis whenever I can. However, I’ve never used Sodastream. I don’t really drink sodas much at all, so it’s just not a product for me. [End of Disclaimer]

    Getting mad at an actress for supporting a REALLY good product that betters the lives of many residents of the Palestinian Territories and is itself a symbol of how so-called “enemies” can live and work together, is not going to change the mideast conflict. Nor will boycotting. On principle I hate seeing a person publicly bullied, demonized, and shunned because their actions don’t suit someone else’s personal politics or religion. ScarJo is politically WAY far Left from me, but I fully support her right to speak out about issues that she feels passion for, and also to support corporations/products that she believes in, regardless of how her choices personally make me feel.

    I have more friends/neighbors than I can keep track of who are in love with the Sodastream stuff, and most of them are Liberal/Leftists who may or may not have a personal opinion about the mideast conflict. They just really love their homemade fizzy drinks!

    • Kiddo says:

      Maureen, I don’t think this will budge me out of my largely indifferent feelings about her. I never thought she was a great actress, she’s pretty, and nothing has really changed in my opinion. But she did put herself in unnecessary controversy, without researching the ramifications or fall out ahead of time. But I really don’t care. I wasn’t interested in the soda machine before all of these things came to light. I thought of it as an unnecessary space-gobbling machine.

      • Maureen says:

        Oh, I don’t like her. I think she’s pompous and over-rated. However, I deeply disagree that she is to blame for whatever “controversy” is surrounding her right now. She didn’t create the controversy. Those who pitched a fit about her decision to rep Sodastream are the ones who created a controversy. Controversy is not created by an action — it’s created by re-action to an action. That’s the literal meaning of “controversy”. It means “contrary to the verse/word”, i.e. against the word that was said.

  30. JenniferJustice says:

    Just goes to show she is not a politician or even a self-educated advocate…she just plays one on T.V. Tired of her pretending she’s smarter than she is. It’s highly doubtful any of these decisions were her’s, but rather suggestions from her PR team or whoever they hire to do the actual research.

  31. LAK says:

    I doubt the Isreali/Palestinian situation is teachable.

    It’s gone on too long and too far for either side to back down.

    And it’s become so toxic that it’s better to walk away because any stand one takes on either side will not be enough for their opposite number.

    It’ll take many more decades before the sensible practical approach, what ever that turns out to be, for this issue to be settled.

    No shade or applause for Scarjo OR Oxfam.

    • Maureen says:

      I truly believe — in my head and in my heart — that there is a solution that would work for both sides. However, it would be a solution that many would find impossible to accept and many would refuse to take part in. So the stalemate is not for lack of solution. It’s for refusal to bend. I also genuinely believe it’s possible to choose a side without emotion and politicking. It’s just knowing the facts and the historical context, like anything else. And thinking outside the box of whatever you’ve heard, been told, or previously thought you believed was right.

  32. Sam H x says:

    Sounds like a bit of common sense would have prevailed in camp Scarlett before she signed on to do work for Oxfam. Would have avoided the whole situation altogether. Leave the humanatrian work to the Brad and Angelina’s of this world, Scarlett. Has this changed my opinion of her? Yes.

  33. tal says:

    longtime lurker, first time posting. As an Israeli, and a dovish anti settlement one, I think Soda Stream really is a more nuanced issue than people here are making it out to be. I, for one, boycott products from settlement. I refuse to buy parsley from the west bank, and check each produce, but Soda Stream really is different. For one, the executives there are lefties, and as such they make it a point to provide palestinians full and equal benefits just like any Israeli employee. If people here really care about peaceful coexistence, than I think perhaps they should research this company some more. They have that feel good story, that because of blanket generalizations gets lost in pop culture.
    The plant is there because of historical tax reasons the previous owner made with authorities some 15 years ago, it’s now a public company on the NASDAQ. They have other plants located within Israel, and tried to relocate the west bank plant, with the Israeli workers, but ultimately decided to keep it open, since the 500 Palestinians couldnt relocate for obvious reasons.
    BTW every peace talk negotiations , EVERY and ANY, has that west bank land remaining in Israeli control, as part of a land swap. That’s a given accepted by both sides, so this issue being controversial is just showcasing peoples’ willingness to let their ignorance make a judgement call instead of appreciating the subtlety and complexity of politics half a world away.

  34. Evi says:

    Greed always wins.
    Johansson has shown how she values money above everything else – even trading in areas that are deemed illegal under international law.

  35. BettyBlue says:

    Just checked the Investor Room in the sodastream website: the price of shares has dropped from 50 used to 35 over the past few days. Karma!

  36. StepfordWifeNot says:

    Do we all really believe that Ms. J had actually thought any of this through prior to signing on the dotted line? Saw $$$$$$$ … did not see anything else methinks.

  37. Kiddo says:

    Here’s an interesting interview.

    At the heart of the dispute is SodaStream’s boss in Israel, Daniel Birnbaum, who says the company’s decision to take over an old munitions factory on a settlement was taken long before he worked for it.

    He is a supporter of the two-state solution, which would create an independent Palestine to stand beside Israel between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea, and says that if the West Bank were to end up in a future Palestinian State he would keep the factory there and pay taxes to the new government.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-25966781

    He’s not the owner so I would imagine he may not have the clout to make the decision, he doesn’t advocate one way or another for ownership of the land by either government, so in that way, he is playing down the middle. I just thought it interesting that it was his opinion that the company would stay if the region was under Palestinian rule.

    Why did end this up @ #40? I posted it at the bottom.