Let the peaceful spirit of the 20th century wash over the Middle East

The famed Israeli peace activist Jeff Halper is making (important) friends in the strangest of places:

Anyone who owns a radio probably knows the song “Turn, Turn, Turn” (To everything there is a season) very well. A number of versions of this song have become permanent fixtures on the play lists of most popular music radio stations. Here’s what the listeners don’t know: every time this song is played, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions receives a few dollars, which accumulate to a “several thousand dollars every year,” according to the committee’s co-founder and coordinator.

The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) is a non-profit organization that uses non-violent means to oppose Israeli demolition of homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Seeger has been donating some of the song’s royalties to ICAHD for ten years.

The banjo-playing Seeger, 90, is considered one of the pioneers of American folk music. He is known for his political activism no less than for his musical achievements. In the 1930s he was involved in the establishment of worker unions, in the 1940s he opposed the war against Germany and in the 1950s he was interrogated by Senator Joe McCarthy over suspicions of belonging to the Communist Party. In recent years Seeger has been involved in efforts to clean up the Hudson River in New York and performed at U.S. President Barack Obama’s inauguration celebration.