Israeli comedian deported from US after making ‘bad joke’

A Twitter tiff ended with a Haaretz journalist reporting Guy Hochman’s joke tweet to US immigration police. 

By World Israel News Staff

An Israeli comedian and his pregnant wife were deported from the United States this week after a tweet joking that the couple would soon “give birth to an American citizen” was reported to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) by a journalist for the left-wing Haaretz daily.

The tweet in question revolved around Guy Hochman’s experience with his seventh-grade English teacher, who had doubted his mastery of the English language. Hochman expressed gratitude for being able to perform in Miami, albeit not in English, before praising his wife. “Kudos to my pregnant wife who goes with the flow and agreed to stay with me here, five months until an American citizen will be born to us.”

Chaim Levinson responded to the tweet, questioning Hochman’s decision to bring his pregnant wife to the US for the purpose of giving birth and securing American citizenship for their child. The journalist tweeted, “Guy Hochman really drags his pregnant wife to give birth in America so that the child gets citizenship and then preaches to the whole world and his wife about patriotism from Miami?”

Hochman retaliated by accusing Levinson of throwing a tantrum and referencing the journalist’s history of criticizing IDF soldiers. The Twitter exchange escalated when, five hours later, Levinson tweeted that he had informed immigration authorities about Hochman’s intention to have his wife give birth in the U.S. for the purpose of obtaining American citizenship for their child. Levinson encouraged others to do the same by providing a link to the ICE tip form.

Following the tip-off, Hochman and his wife found themselves facing inquiries at the airport upon their departure from the US.  In another tweet, Hochman wrote: “Listen, remember the post about Miami where I joked that if we stay here a little longer then we would give birth to an American citizen? So Haaretz reporter Chaim Levinson took it seriously and simply tipped off the American authorities to arrest me and even called on his followers to report me. Now I’m in the airport and they’re starting to ask questions. What a crazy man!”

On Friday, only a day after the initial tip-off to ICE, Guy Hochman and his wife landed in Tel Aviv, Israel. Hochman posted a sarcastic tweet calling on Levinson to report that they were smuggling a fetus into the country.