Text: Izzy Copestake
Irish musicians performing for a good cause: Saoirse don Phalaistín
It seemed like most of Ireland were at the 3Arena last night. Lankum, The Mary Wallopers, Lisa O’Neill and Damien Dempsey were among the strong lineup of all-Irish talent performing, with all profits from the show going to Medical Aid for Palestinians.
Unsurprisingly, the incredible performances from the musicians alongside the vast display of love and solidarity with the people of Palestine, left audiences in awe of such a powerful event, especially at such scale. The gig drew some crowd. After an unprecedented high demand for tickets at the Vicar Street venue, the event moved to the 3Arena to accommodate the sheer number of people looking to support Palestine and see their favourite Irish artists in the process.
Just out of the excellent Gig for #Gaza in Dublin – plenty of anti fascist / racist messaging amongst the #Palestine solidarity did something to lift the gloom since a few 100 shamed our city last Thursday. Lots of work to be done but a reminder that we are many, they are few pic.twitter.com/yucqE0k4uX— Andrew Flood (@andrewflood) November 28, 2023
“Like most people of sound mind and reason around the globe, we are heartbroken and shocked to see the indiscriminate murder of children and civilians happening for the past few weeks,” stated Lankum ahead of the gig. “This, on top of decades of oppression, persecution and dehumanisation is something we can only struggle to comprehend. That is why we are very proud to raise our voices in solidarity with the people of Palestine. It’s the very very least we can do. Cormac, Daragh, Ian and Radie. X” Just 6 days before the gig, Lankum had their festival slot at the German festival TransCentury, canceled due to their public support of the Palestinian people amid Israeli bombardment of the Gaza strip.
The Mary Wallopers also spoke out in support, “We think it’s extremely important for everybody to spread awareness about what is happening in Palestine right now. The government and media have been releasing misinformation and blocking Palestinian news sources. This isn’t about religion or politics at this stage, it’s about basic human rights.”
Despite the outpour of admiration for the event, there were reports on X (formerly Twitter) of security taking Palestinian Flags off people in the crowd. The 3Arena stated that they were operating ‘a strict NO FLAG policy’ for the event. Regardless of the policy, towards the end of the gig all the artists united on stage, holding up the Palestinian flag.
Everybody who played on stage at the end of the gig – I think they said quarter of a million had been raised for Gaza /2 pic.twitter.com/v8uQ9yBPZa— Andrew Flood (@andrewflood) November 28, 2023
What these artists have achieved is remarkable. In the shadow of last week’s shameful riots, this gig has demonstrated how in the face of hatred, violence and dehumanisation, Irish people can unite in the name of love and freedom.
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