WATCH: Dutch TV Denies Spoof of Israeli Eurovision Song was Anti-Semitic

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — The Dutch broadcaster that aired a spoof of Israel’s Eurovision song said the parody was not anti-Semitic, but declined to answer questions about the content that prompted the allegations. In a statement to JTA Tuesday, the BNNVARA state-funded broadcaster defended its spoof Sunday of “Toy” by Netta Barzilai by saying it is “not an indictment against the Jewish community.” The song featured a singer impersonating Barzilai and other singers who performed the winning song on May 19 at the annual song competition in Portugal. Cast members of a satirical show starring comedian Sanne Wallis de Vries sang about Israelis “hunting Palestinians,” keeping the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem empty and inviting revelers to party there. It was a lyric about money that led critics to charge anti-Semitism. The parodists sing, “If your party’s crashed, make sure you cash on embassies, with your ka-ching, ka-ching and your ping-a-ping, with your dollars and cents and your funds, with your ka-ching, ka-ching, ka-ching.” The Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, a watchdog on anti-Semitism, suggested the parody dealt in anti-Semitic cliches about Jews and money. In an unusual move, Israel’s embassy also joined the criticism, penning a letter to BNNVARA Tuesday by Ambassador Aviv Shir-On. The parody had “anti-Semitic overtones,” he wrote, citing the money references. “Not only is this unacceptable, it is also dangerous,” he added, referencing the increase in violent anti-Semitism in the Netherlands, often in connection to Israel. Gideon Lustig, the embassy’s deputy chief of mission, wrote on Twitter: “There are so many things I want to say about #SanneWallisdeVries show, but I’ll only put this here: 2018; Antisemitic-flavored parody on prime-time public broadcasted TV, actually meant to make people laugh: Netherlands, you’ve got a problem. A real one.” Lustig also noted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of anti-Semitism, which includes examples of discriminatory anti-Israel vitriol. BNNVARA spokesperson Thijs Verheij declined to explain the creators’ references to money. In the Sanne Wallis de Vries show, “events of the past week are discussed in a satirical way. Last week, the winning song festival song of Israel coincidentally coincided with the flaring conflict in the Gaza Strip. The parody questions the policy of Israel,” he wrote. ADVERTISEMENT: Bruising easily? You may be eligible for a new study for people with Gaucher disease. Get JTA's Daily Briefing in your inbox Enter Email FEATURED STORIES The ‘#1 fan’ of Israel’s national airline has over 40,000 pieces of memorabilia The '#1 fan' of Israel's national airline has over 40,000 pieces of memorabilia 5 Jewish facts about the new Han Solo ‘Star Wars’ movie 5 Jewish facts about the new Han Solo 'Star Wars' movie This lawyer yelled at restaurant employees for speaking Spanish. Now he’s in trouble. This lawyer yelled at restaurant employees for speaking Spanish. Now he’s in trouble. Your guide to Shavuot, now with 50 percent less facts Your guide to Shavuot, now with 50 percent less facts How Israel overcame politics in winning the Eurovision song contest How Israel overcame politics in winning the Eurovision song contest Enter Email MOST READMOST SHAREDTWITTER Hasidic volunteers, kicked out of a major NY hospital, blame a clash over medical ethics Gazan Palestinians enter Israel, set fire to IDF outpost Dutch state TV’s spoof of Israeli Eurovision song was anti-Semitic, critics charge Jewish siblings assaulted and stabbed in Melbourne Pompeo lays out 12 requirements for signing new nuclear deal with Iran
The Dutch broadcaster that aired a spoof of Israel’s Eurovision song said the parody was not anti-Semitic, but declined to answer questions about the content that prompted the allegations.

In a statement to JTA Tuesday, the BNNVARA state-funded broadcaster defended its spoof Sunday of “Toy” by Netta Barzilai by saying it is “not an indictment against the Jewish community.”

The song featured a singer impersonating Barzilai and other singers who performed the winning song on May 19 at the annual song competition in Portugal. Cast members of a satirical show starring comedian Sanne Wallis de Vries sang about Israelis “hunting Palestinians,” keeping the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem empty and inviting revelers to party there.

It was a lyric about money that led critics to charge anti-Semitism. The parodists sing, “If your party’s crashed, make sure you cash on embassies, with your ka-ching, ka-ching and your ping-a-ping, with your dollars and cents and your funds, with your ka-ching, ka-ching, ka-ching.”

The Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, a watchdog on anti-Semitism, suggested the parody dealt in anti-Semitic cliches about Jews and money.

In an unusual move, Israel’s embassy also joined the criticism, penning a letter to BNNVARA Tuesday by Ambassador Aviv Shir-On.

The parody had “anti-Semitic overtones,” he wrote, citing the money references. “Not only is this unacceptable, it is also dangerous,” he added, referencing the increase in violent anti-Semitism in the Netherlands, often in connection to Israel.

Gideon Lustig, the embassy’s deputy chief of mission, wrote on Twitter: “There are so many things I want to say about #SanneWallisdeVries show, but I’ll only put this here: 2018; Antisemitic-flavored parody on prime-time public broadcasted TV, actually meant to make people laugh: Netherlands, you’ve got a problem. A real one.”

Lustig also noted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of anti-Semitism, which includes examples of discriminatory anti-Israel vitriol.

BNNVARA spokesperson Thijs Verheij declined to explain the creators’ references to money.

In the Sanne Wallis de Vries show, “events of the past week are discussed in a satirical way. Last week, the winning song festival song of Israel coincidentally coincided with the flaring conflict in the Gaza Strip. The parody questions the policy of Israel,” he wrote.