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June 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

New York’s Metropolitan Opera has canceled a live broadcast to 2,000 theaters globally of John Adams’s The Death of Klinghoffer after complaints by the Anti-Defamation League and the daughters of Leon Klinghoffer that the opera was anti-Semitic. In 1985 Klinghoffer was a passenger aboard the cruise ship Achille Lauro that was hijacked by Palestinian terrorists who demanded the release of 50 Palestinians imprisoned by Israel. When their demands were refused, they singled out Klinghoffer for revenge, shooting him in the forehead and chest as he sat in his wheelchair, then forced members of the ship’s crew to throw his body overboard. The Met’s general manager, Peter Gelb, told the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday that he had received hundreds of emails calling on him to cancel the opera. He added that he understood there was "great concern, which I think is justified," about "anything that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as pro-terrorist." The decision to cancel was strongly supported by Klinghoffer’s daughters, Lisa and Ilsa. Composer Adams, however, released a statement maintaining that his opera "accords great dignity to the memory of Leon and Marilyn Klinghoffer, and it roundly condemns his brutal murder. … It acknowledges the dreams and the grievances of not only the Israeli but also the Palestinian people, and in no form condones or promotes violence, terrorism or anti-Semitism." The Met said that although the opera will not be transmitted to theaters in November, it will be presented at the opera house in the fall.