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Hundreds of Hollywood stars unite to denounce controversial Oscar speech

via ABC
This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

Top Hollywood stars and Jewish leaders have condemned the controversial remarks made by “The Zone of Interest” director Jonathan Glazer during his acceptance speech at the Oscars this year.

Glazer compared Israel’s military response to Hamas attacks to Nazi atrocities, drawing over 450 signatures on an open letter refuting any moral equivalence between targeting civilians and self-defense against terrorist groups seeking Israel’s destruction.

“We refute our Jewishness being hijacked for the purpose of drawing a moral equivalence between a Nazi regime that sought to exterminate a race of people, and an Israeli nation that seeks to avert its own extermination,” the letter read. “Every civilian death in Gaza is tragic. But Israel is not targeting civilians. It is targeting Hamas. The moment Hamas releases the hostages and surrenders is the moment this heartbreaking war ends. This has been true since the Hamas attacks of October 7th.”

While Glazer’s film depicted the Holocaust, signatories and others criticized him for inappropriately using that platform to criticize Israel and ignore Hamas’ responsibility for civilian deaths during the latest conflict.

They assert Israel has a right to self-defense and dispute claims that describe Israelis as occupiers in their historic homeland.

“The use of words like ‘occupation’ to describe an indigenous Jewish people defending a homeland that dates back thousands of years, and has been recognized as a state by the United Nations, distorts history. It gives credence to the modern blood libel that fuels a growing anti-Jewish hatred around the world, in the United States, and in Hollywood. The current climate of growing antisemitism only underscores the need for the Jewish State of Israel, a place which will always take us in, as no state did during the Holocaust depicted in Mr. Glazer’s film,” the letter added.

“There was no concern for how Jewish people are going to react to a speech like that, to that applause to those red pins, when not even our hostages are being mentioned, and it’s just incredibly hurtful, incredibly painful,” actor Brett Gelman said. “It’s truly baffling to me that people were choosing to be silent that night.”

“Our film shows where dehumanization leads at its worst,” Glazer said. “Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation, which has led to conflict for so many innocent people – whether the victims of October the 7th in Israel or the ongoing attack on Gaza – all the victims of this dehumanization, how do we resist?”

“I just fundamentally disagree with Jonathan,” executive producer Danny Cohen said.

“It’s really important to recognize it’s upset a lot of people and a lot of people feel upset and angry about it. And I understand that anger frankly,” Cohen said. “The war and the continuation of the war is the responsibility of Hamas, a genocidal terrorist organization which continues to hold and abuse the hostages, which doesn’t use its tunnels to protect the innocent civilians of Gaza but uses it to hide themselves and allow Palestinians to die. I think the war is tragic and awful and the loss of civilian life is awful, but I blame Hamas for that.”

“I watched in anguish Sunday night when I heard you use the platform of the Oscars ceremony to equate Hamas’s maniacal brutality against innocent Israelis with Israel’s difficult but necessary self-defense in the face of Hamas’s ongoing barbarity. Your comments were factually inaccurate and morally indefensible,” Holocaust Survivors’ Foundation USA president David Schaecter wrote.

“The ‘occupation’ of which you speak has nothing to do with the Holocaust. The Jewish people’s existence and right to live in the land of Israel predates the Holocaust by hundreds of years. Today’s political and geographic landscape is the direct result of wars started by past Arab leaders who refused to accept Jewish people as their neighbors in our historic homeland. Now that several Arab countries are making peace with Israel because security and prosperity are better for all people, Iran and its terrorist proxies started another war, abetted by too many, who, through naïveté or malice, blame ‘the occupation.’”

“Worse is that you chose to use the Holocaust to validate your personal opinion. You made a Holocaust movie and won an Oscar. And you are Jewish. Good for you. But it is disgraceful for you to presume to speak for the six million Jews, including one and half million children, who were murdered solely because of their Jewish identity,” Schaecter added. “And it is disgraceful for you to presume to speak for those of us who personally saw the world stand silent as our mothers, father, brothers, sisters, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins were murdered. We actually had nowhere to go – no possible place for refuge. No country would accept us even though world leaders knew full well that thousands of Jews were being murdered every day. There was no Jewish nation to which we could flee. You should be ashamed of yourself for using Auschwitz to criticize Israel.”

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This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak,...

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