Israel to enter Eurovision after third song is approved

The country’s first two songs had been rejected after accusations of being “political”


Israeli Eurovision entrant Eden Golan will be singing "Hurricane" at Eurovision in May after Israel's first two song submissions were rejected on the grounds of being "political" for referring to the massacre of October 7

Israel will be performing at the Eurovision Song Contest this year after its third entry was approved by organisers.

The announcement by Kan, Israel’s public broadcaster, comes after Israel’s first two submissions were rejected by the European Broadcasting Union.

The first song, October Rain was denied entry for being “political” and the second entry, Dance Forever, was also turned down. Both songs alluded to the massacre of October 7 by Hamas terrorists.

Israel will now enter with the song Hurricane, which has the same melody of October rain, but with revised lyrics. Singer Eden Golan will be performing it in Malmo in Sweden, in May.

In a video message posted on social media, Russian-Israeli Golan said in Hebrew: “This year, it is more important than ever that we stand on that stage and represent our country with respect. I intend to do everything to represent our country with pride and to give it my all so we can get the maximal result.”

Several countries, including Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden, have called for Israel to be banned from Eurovision or threatened not to take part if Israel is allowed to enter. In Belgium, two ministers have demanded that Israel be barred, comparing the county to Russia, which has been denied entry since 2022 after it invaded Ukraine.

The first song, October Rain, included the lyrics “There’s no air left to breathe / There is no place for me” and “They were all good children, each one of them”, which were understood to be referring to those murdered by Hamas on October 7. The lyrics also included “flowers,” a term that is often used in Israel as military code for war casualties.

Hurricane, penned by Keren Peles, Avi Ohayon and Stav Beger, is reportedly about a woman coming out of a personal crisis.

Kan originally rejected calls for changes to be made to October Rain, but was persuaded following requests from President Herzog. A Kan spokesperson said at the time: "The president emphasised that at this time in particular, when those who hate us seek to push aside and boycott the state of Israel from every stage, Israel must sound its voice with pride and its head high and raise its flag in every world forum, especially this year.”

Hurricane is due to be released today on Israeli channel Kan 11 at 9.30pm IST.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive