Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has refused to apologize for anti-Semitic remarks she posted on Twitter last week in which she compared investment funds contributing to Argentina’s extensive national debt to William Shakespeare’s famous Jewish antagonist Shylock, playing on the old anti-Semitic claim of Jews trying to control global finance.
Fernandez tweeted the remarks following a visit to a Buenos Aires school, where she told 10-year-old students that to understand Argentina’s economic crisis, they should read Shakespeare’s “The Merchant of Venice.” In that play, Jewish moneylender Shylock is portrayed as a greedy ruthless usurer.
“No, don’t laugh. Usury and bloodsuckers have been immortalized in the greatest literature for centuries,” Kirchner tweeted.
Kirchner has not only refused to apologize for the remarks, which have caused uproar in the country’s large Jewish community, but she also mocked her critics by saying that “The Merchant of Venice” was performed at the Habima Theater in Israel.