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April 8, 2020 9:13 am

Wiesenthal Center Demands Social-Media Platforms Delete Viral Antisemitic Posts

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The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s new study “Deadly New Virus Intersects with History’s Oldest Hate: Report and Analysis,” released in April, highlights anti-Semitism on social media during the coronavirus pandemic. Photo: Screenshot. – The Simon Wiesenthal Center is urging social media platforms to remove posts that use the coronavirus pandemic to promote antisemitism and violence against Jews.

“This is exactly the breeding ground for extremists,” Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean and director of global social action of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, told Fox News.

Its new study “Deadly New Virus Intersects with History’s Oldest Hate: Report and Analysis,” released in April, highlights one of many posts on Telegram, the popular instant-messaging app, that shows an image of the coronavirus with the words ”Holocough: If you have the bug, give a hug, spread the flu, to every Jew.”

“The coronavirus pandemic may be new, but Jews have a long and tragic history of being accused of spreading deadly viruses,” the report stated.

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Such antisemitic posts are being used “to incite lone-wolf-type of attacks, God forbid, one-on-one, and to demonize a community,” said Cooper.

He added about Telegram, “It’s a hot spot in which extremists can promote and communicate with each other. While they occasionally take things off, I’m not holding my breath that we’re going to get any positive results.”

Cooper contacted the US Department of Justice, and is calling on the FBI and local law enforcement to take action when necessary, reported Fox News.

He also addressed the increase in hate crimes against Asian-Americans since the start of the virus, which originated in Wuhan, China.

He explained that “what it shows [is that] in a time of uncertainty and fear, people naturally look for a scapegoat or an outlet for their anger … or they have a predisposition, they might hate Asians or Jews, and use this as an excuse … this is indicative of the climate.”

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