'Jews To Blame For Swine Flu'
World Jewry this week hit out at a Dutch 'healer' who has blamed the swine flu outbreak on the Jewish community.
Speaking to Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf Saturday, Desiree Rover said the virus is a conspiracy of pharmaceutical companies, intent on increasing their profits through the sale of swine flu tablet Tamiflu and decreasing the population by spreading the sometimes deadly strain.
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De Telegraaf quoted Rover as saying descendants of the group are now "praying to another god; Lucifer, Satan or however you want to call him" and "are called Rockefeller, Rothschild, Brzezinski and Kissinger".
Condemning the hypothesis, director of the Dutch Centre for Information and Documentation on Israel Ronny Naftaniel told the Jewish News the article "had the smell of" implying the drug companies are operated by Jewish groups who are using the community's panic as a wage-garnering coup.
Naftaniel's group, an anti-Semitic watchdog in the Netherlands, are arguing that the comments were "libelous", adding that the centre is considering filing an official complaint against Rover. Naftaniel also noted the healer is a common speaker at various events in Holland, and is known to "stir controversy during her appearances".
He said: "These types of comments are not new, but they are dangerous whenever they are spoken. Her claims had absolutely no scientific evidence to support them, they were conspiracy theories.
He added: "This woman is no doctor, and she should take better care when speaking about subjects she obviously knows very little about."
Responding to criticisms, De Telegraaf ran an article in it's publication on Sunday providing counter arguments against Rover's claim, interviewing Naftaniel who told the paper he believed her statements were "completely false and libelous".
Jon Benjamin, director general of the Board of Deputies, told the Jewish News: "These absurd claims belong in the middle ages when ignorant superstitious yokels propagated such blood libels. It is regrettable if they are given any currency by being repeated."
Jonathan Hoffman, co-Vice Chair of the Zionist Federation, added: "This accusation takes us back to medieval times when Jews were accused of well poisoning, sacrificing children and host desecration. I cannot imagine why De Telegraaf saw fit to print the deranged rantings of this conspiracy theorist."
Meanwhile, swine flu has spread in the Jewish state, with the Israeli Health Ministry confirming that 2,000 residents have fallen victim to the virus. In an effort to counteract the pandemic, a group of about 50 rabbis took to the skies Monday for an airborne minyan. Praying onboard the flight which circled over Israel, the gathering saw shofars blown as rabbis davened, with participant Rabbi Yitzhak Basri telling Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot: "The purpose of the flight was to stop the [swine flu] epidemic so that people will not keep dying from it."
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