Sunday, February 21, 2021

Michael Che Forgot The Four-Letter "K" Word

Anti-semitic, mostly left, Twitter is ablaze with support for Saturday Night Live's Michael Che, who claims "Israel is reporting that they vaccinated half their population. And I'm going to guess it's not the Jewish half."  Unfortunately, Ryan Grim also is pleased:

Nice try, Ryan. But when one is criticizing a government for alleged religious bias, one needs to have one's facts straight.

There is no documented bias in administration of Covid-19 vaccination in Israel. None. Although vaccination rates there are higher than in most of the world, individuals in some groups have been reluctant to receive their dose (s) and

Einav Shimron, the Health Ministry’s deputy director for international relations, said the ministry is working with physicians and religious leaders to counter misinformation, such as claims that the vaccine can cause infertility.

The ministry manages a command center with 11 trackers who monitor social media activity for anti-vaccination posts in Hebrew, Russian, Amharic, Arabic and English on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Telegram. The center is adding more staffers in the coming days.

Hebrew- and Arabic? This does not sound like a government pleased that its Arab residents are not receiving the vaccine.  The Palestinian Authority is responsible for vaccinating its own residents and, as The Guardian recently reported, "after international pressure, Israel agreed this month to transfer 5,000 Moderna vaccine doses to Palestinian medical workers in the West Bank, while the Palestinian Authority intends to source the majority of its doses elsewhere."  (This has been its policy throughout.)

Grim presumably was referring to vaccine doses held up on Monday, but allowed through on Wednesday, by Israeli security forces. There has been no word recently on the two Israeli citizens, nor of the remains of two Israeli soldiers, held by Hamas.

Last July, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar recognized “anti-Semitic tweets and posts from sports and entertainment celebrities (which) are a very troubling omen for the future of the Black Lives Matter movement.”  While referring to Israel itself, Michael Che may have been thinking about the West Bank. In which case he should have replaced “Israel” with “the West Bank," the "occupied territories," or the "land under control of the Palestinian Authority." 

Instead, he believes attributing bias to Israel is good sport, binding anti-Semites, some religious and secular Christians, and left-wing Jews hurt that Israel has not been able to provide for Arab Palestinians the prosperous and free homeland denied them for centuries by Arab nations.

Under some circumstances, criticizing Israel- or even Jews- is  legitimate. However, there is one description for a brazenly inaccurate. religiously-based, attack:  Anti-Semitism.

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