Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger

Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger face blowback for pro-Israel statement

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You know who never, ever needs to publicly weigh in on the Middle East? Sylvester Stallone. Justin Bieber’s manager. And the guy who directed The Exorcist

But hey, they won’t let that stop them: These are just three of the nearly 200 Hollywood heavyweights—including Seth Rogen, Bill Maher, Aaron Sorkin, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Sarah Silverman—who attached their names to an open letter condemning Hamas for threatening the “democratic values” of Israel. Because that ought to help.

The statement was crafted by Creative Community For Peace, an organization and shoddy website that represents “a cross section [sic] of the creative world” interested in preventing “cultural boycotts” of Israel. Though it laments the “devastating loss of life endured by Israelis and Palestinians in Gaza,” the blame for recent violence falls squarely on one side:

While we stand firm in our commitment to peace and justice, we must also stand firm against ideologies of hatred and genocide which are reflected in Hamas' charter, Article 7 of which reads, “There is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him!” The son of a Hamas founder has also commented about the true nature of Hamas.

Hamas cannot be allowed to rain rockets on Israeli cities, nor can it be allowed to hold its own people hostage. Hospitals are for healing, not for hiding weapons. Schools are for learning, not for launching missiles. Children are our hope, not our human shields.

Hardline neocons happily welcomed the support of “luminaries” they’d normally blast as liberal Jewish Illuminati, though much of Twitter was not so pleased.

Meanwhile, one or two producers have vowed to blacklist married actors Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem for signing a letter against “the genocide perpetrated by the Israeli occupation army.” Oh, and here’s Joan Rivers taking a typically nuanced position:

We’re so glad that celebrities could wade into this mess and explain it for us nobodies.

Photo by Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)