Here's another taste from the article itself:
Politics will always walk hand in hand with film, and with film festivals, but at the core of every festival, from Melbourne to Montreal, is the independence and integrity of the programme: it is a festival's primary asset and part of an inviolate bond of trust between a festival and its audience. To allow the personal politics of one filmmaker to proscribe a festival position would not only open a veritable floodgate, but also goes against the grain of what festivals stand for. Not that I felt the need to justify ourselves but in my response to Loach, explaining why Melbourne's film festival would not comply with his demands, I reminded him that it had had a long interest in the Middle East and has programmed many films about the Israel-Palestinian question – most, if not all, sympathetic to the Palestinians.No they haven't, they just don't have lots of representative groups of their victims calling for a boycott.
Loach's reply was:In other words, everyone has been given a royal dispensation from Loach to commit war crimes bar the Israelis.
Film festivals will reflect many points of view, which are often radical and progressive. It is also true that there are many brutal regimes and many governments, including our own, which have committed war crimes. But the cultural boycott called for by the Palestinians means that remaining sympathetic but detached observers is no longer an option.
Why can't Israel's apologists be honest? There have been honest opponents of the boycott but clearly this Richard Moore chap isn't one of them. Ken Loach has simply said that funding from Israel should be rejected or he will withdraw his own work from the festival. Withdrawing ones own work is hardly censorship and nor is rejecting funding from racist war criminals.
I believe comments are still open