Yale News, “Dance group boosts fundraiser for ‘Palestinian anarchist fighters’ during weekend shows”

During at least two performances, Ballet Folklórico displayed a QR code linking to an Instagram post with a Venmo handle, since deactivated, to support self-described “Palestinian anarchist fighters.” On Monday, the co-presidents said they were solely responsible for displaying the QR code, apologized to members and called it a “grave error” in an email to the group.

By Tristan Hernandez & Jane Park, November 14, 2023

During at least two of Ballet Folklórico Mexicano de Yale’s three fall showcase performances this past weekend, the dance group included a QR code labeled “Support Palestine” on its on-stage projection screen, alongside a separate QR code for the show’s program. The “Support Palestine” QR code directed audience members to a three-slide Instagram post by the account @desolasol.colectiva, with a title slide that reads “Collection of resources to aid Palestine.” The second slide listed donation information for four groups — the Middle East Children’s Alliance, Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, Medical Aid for Palestinians and Gaza Mutual Aid Collective. The third and final slide is a graphic with the heading “Support Palestinian anarchist fighters.” 

The last slide listed a Venmo handle — which, as of Monday night, appears to no longer exist — and also tags another Instagram account called @abolishtheusa. That account features a handful of posts from this month showing support for Fauda, a self-described “anarchist movement in Palestine” that the account says associates itself with Hamas, which the United States recognizes as a terrorist group. According to the account, a Fauda member in an interview described the organization as one of “15 anti-Zionist resistance groups in Palestine” — specifically including Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Kitab al-Aqsa — that are “all together” and “follow the same goal.” 

In an email sent to Ballet Folklórico members yesterday at 4:14 p.m., the co-presidents wrote that they made the decision to include the QR code hours before the first show “without consulting the board or membership,” which they called a “substantial oversight.” They apologized to members who were “unwillingly and unknowingly aligned” with the statements.

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