Netanyahu slams ‘SNL’ joke about Israeli COVID-19 vaccine effort

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​Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed a “Saturday Night Live” skit that claimed that Israel only vaccinated “the Jewish half” of its population.

“This is just outrageous,” Netanyahu said during an interview Thursday on “Fox & Friends” when asked about the cringe-worthy comedy routine.

“It’s so false.”

“In fact, I brought vaccines and went especially to the Arab communities, the Arab citizens of Israel, and vaccinated as many as we can. I must have gone to half a dozen Arab communities already, talked with the mayors there, brought the leaders, brought the doctors there – Arab doctors,” he said.

The segment last month on the show’s “Weekend Update” prompted accusations that the joke was anti-Semitic and sparked protests outside the NBC studios.

“Israel is reporting that they’ve vaccinated half of their population. I’m going to guess it’s the Jewish half,” Michael Che said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu grimaces as he chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu grimaces as he chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem
AFP via Getty Images

Former state Assemblyman Dov Hikind was among those blasting Che at the time for the skit’s ignorance.

“But Michael Che or whoever wrote that ‘joke’ is obviously also ignorant of fact that Israel has Arab citizens who’ve received the vaccine according to the same qualifications as Jews!,” he wrote on Twitter.​

Israel has vaccinated 53.2 percent of the population with the first dose and 39 percent have received the second shot, Haaretz reported, citing figures from the Health Ministry. ​​

'SNL' hosts of 'Weekend Update' Colin Jost (left) and Michael Che
‘SNL’ hosts of ‘Weekend Update’ Colin Jost (left) and Michael Che
Will Heath/NBC

Jews make up nearly 74 percent of Israel’s population, and Arabs comprise 21.1 percent, according to the Jewish Virtual Library.



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