So much for the hope that “America's standing in the world would immediately rebound when the Bush administration rode into the sunset,” said the Los Angeles Times in an editorial. Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman echoed a sentiment shared by many abroad when, onstage at California’s Disney Hall, he lambasted the U.S. military for trying to “control the world,” and called on America to “get your hands off my country.”
Hey, celebrities have a right to their opinions, said Don Surber in the Charleston, W.V., Daily Mail, but Zimerman's threat to stay out of the U.S.—once his tour is over, of course—seems like a marketing ploy. Like the Dixie Chicks, Zimerman may just be out to ingratiate himself with left-wingers. “When the Soviet Union actually occupied his nation, did he ever rail publicly against the occupiers?”
“I’m glad Zimerman isn’t afraid” to speak out, said Tom Service in Britain’s The Guardian. He has been criticizing the Iraq war since 2003, and now he is mad about President Obama’s decision to continue the Bush administration’s plans to build a missile shield in Poland. “The reaction of the audience, from cheering to walk-outs, showed that Zimerman touched a nerve.”
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The latent sexism of the male marriage proposal
- Bush vs. Clinton in 2016 is the perfect way to make millennials hate politics even more
- After Ferguson: Stop deferring to the cops
- This judge is the reason we're still fighting over net neutrality
- Is it now OK to have sex with animals?
- The hilarious hypocrisy of Republicans complaining about the imperial presidency
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- The week's best photojournalism
- The lessons of Japan's latest recession
Subscribe to the Week