Cosmetics firm LUSH endorses “Freedom for Palestine”

Posted on June 5, 2011


Submitted by Ali Abunimah on Sat, 06/04/2011 – 14:02

The UK-based international cosmetics firm LUSH has endorsed a single aimed at raising awareness of the struggle for human rights in Palestine. In an appeal in the “Ethical Campaigns” section on its website, the company says:

This month we have the exciting opportunity to help secure a UK chart position for a song called ‘Freedom for Palestine’ by a collective of musicians called OneWorld. The aim of the song is to raise awareness of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the resulting poverty and other human rights abuses. Musicians include the South African gospel choir, members of the London Community Gospel Choir, Maxi Jazz from Faithless, Jamie Catto from 1 Giant Leap and other musicians from around the world. Please support this project by buying the song; you can pre-order on iTunes or HMV now.

The LUSH statement adds, “The catastrophe facing the Palestinian people is one of the defining global justice issues of our time” and urges, “If OneWorld are successful at getting the song in the charts, the mainstream media will find it hard to ignore it or censor its message.”

This is particularly relevant in the UK, where recently BBC Radio 1Xtra bleeped out the lyric “free Palestine” from a performance by rapper Mic Righteous.

The move by LUSH marks a significant shift toward mainstreaming the struggle for equality in Palestine that recalls how songs such as “Free Nelson Mandela” helped do the same for the struggle against apartheid in South Africa in the 1980s.
LUSH’s support for the song – and for freedom for Palestine – comes after best-selling rock band Coldplay had urged its fans to check out the Freedom for Palestine video in messages posted on their Facebook page and Twitter feeds.

LUSH has entered the debate on Palestine by taking a firm stand for human rights. This contrasts with the Israeli cosmetics firm Ahava which has been the subject of an intense boycott campaign because of its use of raw materials pillaged from occupied Palestinian territories and production in illegal Israeli colonies in the occupied West Bank.

LUSH has previously supported protests against Arizona’s anti-immigrant law known as SB 1070, has called for the abolition of nuclear weapons, and opposed the destructive environmental effects of oil production from Canada’s Tar Sands among other causes.

The company, known for its hand-made cosmetics made from organic and natural ingredients, has 650 stores and several factories in over 40 countries and employs 6,000 people.