Megadeth, the LA thrash metal band, has canceled its scheduled Wednesday performance in Tel Aviv in light of the ongoing violence in Gaza.
The music group, which has performed in Israel three times before, seemed dead set – megadead set, if you will – on making it back to the Holy Land this summer, despite weeks of incessant Hamas rocket fire on Israeli cities and a massive Israeli ground incursion into the Gaza Strip. Just after the hostilities broke out in July, Megadeth told Channel 2 that anyone who doesn’t come to Israel is “a coward.”
Despite those assurances, on Tuesday morning, Megadeth posted an announcement on their official Facebook page, saying, “Tel Aviv Concert Cancelled” due to, as they put it, “an inability to confirm the guaranteed passage of the band and their gear into Tel Aviv in time for the show.”
The band is currently in Istanbul and the statement raised serious questions among Facebook fans as to whether the cancellation may actually have been due to foot-dragging on the part of Turkish customs officers or airline officials who would be responsible for their passage to Israel. In recent years, Turkey and Israel have seen ongoing tension, and Turkey has repeatedly compared Israel to the Nazi Germany over its actions in Gaza.
“The band was looking forward to this concert and is disappointed they will not be able to put on the show for their fans, but expects to return to Tel Aviv on their next international tour,” the statement said.
Ticket buyers were instructed to check with their point of purchase for refund information.
Concert promoter Udi Appelboim said he was also still expecting Lana Del Rey on August 20, and recently announced that local singer Marina Maximilian Blumin would be Del Rey’s warm-up act.
“No news is good news, right?” said Appelboim.
In the capital, the Jerusalem Season of Culture, which postponed its two-month-long list of activities, is still planning to hold its Sacred Music Festival on September 9-12.