There's encouraging news in the results of a poll for the Jewish Chronicle that Martin Bright reports on in that paper:
[P]eople calling for a boycott of Israeli actors, dancers and musicians are not in the majority in this country. Sometimes, in the heat of the debate, it is easy to lose perspective. The voices branding Israel an apartheid state are so shrill and vocal that it is easy to forget that they command only limited support.
Easy to forget for people (including me) whose impression of national opinion is too much influenced by the Guardian and its more verkrappt left periphery. In any event, Martin continues:
The YouGov poll carried out for the JC shows that most people in this country believe Israeli artists should be welcome to perform here. Younger people and Labour voters are marginally less supportive of Israeli artists playing here, but only just...
The picture is different when it comes to British artists playing in Israel: when 27 per cent of people believe we should not send our cultural talent to play in a particular country, this is something that should give cause for concern. However, it is important to bear in mind that 37 per cent also oppose a boycott in this direction.
Martin also warns against taking too sanguine a view of these survey results:
[B]efore we start thinking that the boycott glass is half-full, we should look at the less positive aspects of the poll. It is sobering to know, for example, that 17 per cent of the public believe Israeli artists should not be welcome in this country. For most countries in the world this figure would be zero.
If that doesn't suggest the need for an explanation, probably nothing will.