Scarlett Johansson is not backing away from her endorsement deal with Israeli company SodaStream.
Johansson is the first-ever “global brand ambassador” for the drink maker, which includes appearing in a Super Bowl commercial next Sunday.
SodaStream has been targeted by pro-Palestinian activists for running a factory in the West Bank. The Oxfam International so-called humanitarian group, for which Johansson has also served as a global ambassador, opposes all trade from Israeli settlements.
In a statement, Johansson said that she wanted to clear the air because she “never intended on being the face of any social or political movement, distinction, separation or stance” as part of her Soda Stream endorsement.
The actress, 29, went on to say, however, that she is standing behind the SodaStream product, and also noted that she is proud of what she has accomplished during her Oxfam affiliation:
I remain a supporter of economic cooperation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine. SodaStream is a company that is not only committed to the environment but to building a bridge to peace between Israel and Palestine, supporting neighbors working alongside each other, receiving equal pay, equal benefits and equal rights. That is what is happening in their Ma’aleh Adumim factory every working day.”
The international organizations that keep calling for disinvestment in or trade boycotts of the state of Israel for whatever reason don’t seem to realize or acknowledge that the Jewish state is the only functioning multicultural democracy in the Middle East. Israel is also the home of many start-up companies, both in high-tech and in other fields.
SodaStream, which calls itself world’s largest manufacturer, distributor, and marketer of home carbonation systems, has 22 plants around the world, According to CEO Daniel Birnbaum, the West Bank factory gives Palestinians “an opportunity not only to have a job and health insurance, but also social benefits and a very high pay scale which they could never achieve in the West Bank.”
Watch these previews of Scarlett Johansson’s SodaStream TV spot:
[top image credit: Gage Skidmore]