French Jews reacted with concern after anti-Semitic comments were made by humorist Sebastian Thoen on the prime-time Le Grand Journal show, on the country’s CANAL+ television station earlier this month.
The offensive remarks came as Thoen was introducing popular Jewish Comedian Elie Semoun, who appeared on the show to promote his newly published book.
“You never embarked into communitarianism […] You could have also appeared in the streets selling jeans and diamonds from the back of a car saying ‘Israel is always right… But you did not … One can be Jewish and not be completely disgusting. No offense to some!” Thoen said according to a translation provided to The Algemeiner.
Roger Cukierman, president of CRIF, the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions responded to the incident by calling to the attention of Mr. Bertrand Méheut, the chairman of the CANAL + group, the severity of the comments which he said amounted to the “trivialization of anti-Semitism,” according to a statement published on CRIF’s website.
New York based French Jewish artist, activist and Algemeiner blogger Ron Agam said that “These incendiary remarks are the culmination of an attitude often found in French media where Jews are often demonized for their support of Israel.”
“These two minutes set off a huge storm within the Jewish community in France, including outrage and demands of resignation addressed to CANAL+,” Agam said. “The indignity is mounting daily; the realization that such words of extreme gravity can be pronounced on TV is creating a feeling that it is OK to lash out with anti-Semitic remarks.”
A video in French of the incident on CANAL+ can be viewed here.
Source: ALGEMEINER JOURNAL