Roger Waters calls U2’s Bono an “enormous s**t” over Israel speech

Bono’s recent comments on the Israel-Hamas war have drawn the ire of the former Pink Floyd man, who himself has been accused of antisemitism in the past.

Roger Waters and U2's Bono

Image: Sergione Infuso – Corbis / C Flanigan / Getty Images

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Roger Waters has slammed Bono for “being an enormous shit” following the U2 frontman’s recent comments on the Israel-Hamas war.

In a new interview with news network Al Jazeera, the former Pink Floyd man addressed a recent U2 performance at the Las Vegas Sphere where Bono paid his respects to those who were killed during the 7 October attack at the Israeli music festival Supernova.

“In the light of what’s happened in Israel and Gaza, a song about non-violence seems somewhat ridiculous, even laughable, but our prayers have always been for peace and for non-violence,” Bono told audiences at the band’s show last fall. “But our hearts and our anger, you know where that’s pointed. So, sing with us, and those beautiful kids at that music festival.”

He then changed the lyrics to Pride (In the Name of Love), singing, in place of the original’s Martin Luther King, Jr. references: “Early morning, October 7th/the sun is rising in the desert sky/Stars of David, they took your life/but they could not take your pride.”

Slamming the display as “disgusting”, Waters – a longtime critic of the Israeli government – lambasted [via Clash]: “Anybody who knows Bono should go and pick him up by his ankles and shake him… until he stops being an enormous shit.”

“We have to start saying to these people, your opinion is so disgusting and so degrading… sticking up for the Zionist entity,” he added. “What he did a couple of weeks ago in the Sphere in Las Vegas, singing about the Stars of David, was one of the most disgusting things I’ve ever seen in my life.”

Watch the full interview below.

Roger Waters has been condemned in recent years for his actions both on and offstage, which many have interpreted as antisemitic.

In April last year, officials in Frankfurt, Germany announced that they would cancel his then-upcoming show in the city over claims of antisemitism. The ruling was reversed and the show ultimately went ahead, but German police later announced that they were investigating Waters over alleged Nazi imagery used during his performances. For context, Waters performed onstage wearing an SS-style Nazi uniform, and held a prop MP-40 submachine gun, a model developed by the Nazis in World War II.

But his controversial history doesn’t stop there; earlier in 2023, he spoke at a UN Security Council meeting following an invitation from the Russian government. He condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and called for a ceasefire, but also called out Western “provocateurs” he claimed were to blame.

Per the BBC, Ukrainian ambassador to the UN Sergiy Kyslytsya declared Waters’ speech “another brick in the wall” of Russian disinformation.

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