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Singapore’s Israel embassy condemns social media posts comparing vaccination campaign to Holocaust

“Comparing the obvious health benefits of vaccinations that have benefited billions around the world is not only in bad taste, but is also Holocaust Distortion by downplaying the horrors of the Holocaust,” said the Israel embassy.

Hana O THE INDEPENDENT SG August 12, 2021

SINGAPORE — The embassy of Israel in Singapore has slammed recent social media posts comparing the country’s Covid-19 policies to the Holocaust.

“The Embassy of Israel in Singapore strongly condemns recent posts circulating on social media likening the vaccination campaign and other vaccine related issues to the Holocaust,” the diplomatic mission said in a Facebook post on Thursday (Aug 12).

It explained that the Holocaust was a genocide by the Nazi regime to slaughter six million innocent Jews.

“Comparing the obvious health benefits of vaccinations that have benefited billions around the world is not only in bad taste, but is also Holocaust Distortion by downplaying the horrors of the Holocaust,” said the Israel embassy.

 “We urge others to think twice before re-sharing such content – There is no equal for the tragedies that occurred during the Holocaust.”

The response came days after former Progress Singapore Party (PSP) member Brad Bowyer took to social media on Aug 10, sharing his views on the island-nation’s vaccination programme.

Mr Bowyer wrote, “Singapore is now us and them. God help our nation!” on the caption.

He attached a photo of the infamous railway truck leading to Auschwitz and the Nazi death camp in the background.

On top of the image was the message:

“It didn’t start with gas chambers. It started with one party controlling the media. One party controlling the message. One party deciding what is truth. One party censoring speech and silencing opposition. One party dividing citizens into “Us” and “Them” and calling on their supporters to harass “them”. It started when good people turned a blind eye and let it happen”.

Members from the online community quickly criticised the post, noting it was “deeply offensive and just plain wrong.”

Many noted that the two situations could not be compared.

In his Instagram account on the same post, a Jewish woman blasted his message, calling it “disgusting to not only us Jews of Singapore but Jews worldwide.”

However, Mr Bowyer replied, “Sadly, it is disgusting that this turn of events has been allowed to happen again. I believe you should reflect on that young lady. I have met a camp survivor and know her story. If she were alive today, I am sure she would be equally disgusted that this is happening in modern Singapore.”

On Wednesday (Aug 11), Mr Bowyer tendered his resignation from PSP, as some of his views “are diverging” from the party’s positions.

He also clarified why he chose the picture from the Holocaust for his previous post.

Mr Bowyer said he and his family, as well as “hundreds of thousands of Singaporeans who have concerns about vaccination, were formally made second class citizens in their own country.”

“Further by these edicts and all the online vitriol and ill will being made towards unvaccinated people, generated in no small part by months of government propaganda many, including my wife, are now feeling unsure of their future and livelihoods and frankly with calls for starvation, expulsion, being locked in their homes etc., feeling unsafe to even be here,” he said.

Mr Bowyer wrote that the “exact path” has been followed before, with similar “for your own good” justifications.

He noted how he had studied the Holocaust at school and had met a survivor who shared the “same creeping patterns she described happening today.”

“Down to the fact that now non vaccinated on construction sites must wear identification, or patrons have to wear coloured stickers in food courts, and I don’t know how long before that gets expanded to the general population all the time.”

Mr Bowyer said in conclusion that he could not stay silent amid such concerns.

“But at the same time, I won’t allow that and any online noise makers damage PSP either.”

In a separate post on Wednesday, People’s Power Party leader Goh Meng Seng uploaded a photo of a notice at a social club indicating that certain changing rooms and toilets were only for “vaccinated users.”

 “Things are getting out of hands due to Nazis PAP,” Mr Goh wrote, referring to the ruling People’s Action Party. /TISG

S’pore’s Israel embassy condemns social media posts comparing vaccination campaign to Holocaust

SOURCE – THE INDEPENDENT, SINGAPOR August 12, 2021

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