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Museum caves to pressure, cancels Palestinian art exhibit

Saturday, September 10, 2011

imageThe Museum of Children’s Art in Oakland has pulled the plug on an art exhibit by Palestinian children depicting the Israeli assault during the 2008-2009 Gaza conflict, citing pressure from Jewish groups and others. The exhibit was to have opened Sept. 24 and featured drawings from kids ages 9 to 11, including depictions of bombs dropping, tanks and people getting shot, the Chronicle says.

Add: MOCHA board member Randolph Bell tells the Chron: "The pressure was ...well, we were getting calls from constituents that were concerned about the situation. We don't have any political stake in this thing. It just became apparent that we needed to rethink this."

Background: Remove the Palestinian-Israeli conflict from the equation and the exhibit sounds similar to ones the museum has featured in the past. An excerpt from the piece by Jill Tucker:

In 2007, MOCHA exhibited paintings made during World War II by American children in the Kaiser shipyard child care center. The art featured images of Hitler, burning airplanes, sinking battleships, empty houses and a sad girl next to a Star of David.

In 2004, art by Iraqi children hung on the museum's walls. The pictures, made shortly after the U.S. invasion, included a picture of a helicopter shooting into a field of flowers.

The art by the Palestinian children was similar in content.

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