An anti-Semitic sticker on a subway car in Hamburg linking Jews to coronavirus was condemned as virus that “creates a climate of hatred and propaganda.”
By Paul Shindman, World Israel News
An anti-Semitic sticker connecting Jews to the coronavirus pandemic was found on a subway car in a major German city, an organization that fights anti-Semitism reported Thursday.
The sticker in the shape of a yellow star of David with a biohazard symbol on it was found last week stuck to the window on a subway car in Hamburg using an infamous Nazi-era symbol, the Research and Information Center for Anti-Semitism (RIAS) in Berlin said in a statement on its Facebook page.
“The sticker compared with the Holocaust by comparing state measures against Covid19 sufferers with the Nazi extermination policy,” RIAS said.
Two stickers were found, with one being a yellow heart with the text “I bio-hazard CORONA” where the word “bio-hazard” appeared on the stick in the shape of the international symbol for a bio-hazard. The second sticker had the shape of a star of David in yellow with the inscription “Coronavirus Infected !!” and in the middle the symbol for biohazard.
“The shape and color of one of the stickers thus openly alludes to the so-called “Jewish star,” a compulsory identifier that Jews had to wear” in Nazi Germany, RIAS said. “The use of the symbol leads to a trivialization of the Holocaust, and the users also stage themselves as victims of a mass crime.”
RIAS said similar symbols are now found in Facebook groups among in conspiracy theorists where “conspiracy theorists,” “Corona” and “Alternative Press” are stylized into a persecuted group like the Jews were under Nazism.
The Research and Information Center Antisemitismus Berlin (RIAS Berlin) has developed a reporting system for anti-Semitic incidents in the city in cooperation with Jewish and non-Jewish organizations. Reports and independent research are systematized and analyzed, serving as the basis for qualitative assessments.
The incident was condemned by German groups and the World Zionist Organization.
“In times of corona, the virus of anti-Semitism also spreads and creates a climate of hatred and propaganda,” said Uwe Becker, president of the German-Israeli Society (DIG) that promotes bilateral relations between Germany and Israel in the areas of civil society, culture and science.
WZO Vice-Chairman Yaakov Hagoel blasted the anti-Semitic nature of the conspiracy theories that try to blame the Jews for the pandemic.
“The Corona virus does not differentiate between race and gender religion but gives fertile ground to anti-Semitic conspiracies,” Hagoel tweeted. “This phenomenon, of accusing the Jews of creating epidemics, diseases and more, is not new. We saw it already in the Middle Ages during the Black Plague. Even then, as today, they incited against the Jews.”