Actress and progressive activist Alyssa Milano was one of a number of celebrities, politicians, and commentators voicing concerns over the coronavirus relief package that passed Congress Monday. Listed among her gripes, however, was a factually inaccurate, anti-Israel meme that could be considered anti-Semitic.
Late Monday, Milano posted a tweet noting that, “Between 30 and 40 million families are at risk of eviction, but Congress can only afford $600 per person. I’m sure the $500 MILLION in arms and military aid to Israel and the $2 BILLION for Air Force missiles will help keep them warm when they are on the streets.”
Between 30 and 40 million families are at risk of eviction, but Congress can only afford $600 per person.
I’m sure the $500 MILLION in arms and military aid to Israel and the $2 BILLION for Air Force missiles will help keep them warm when they are on the streets. pic.twitter.com/3cqq63t8jO
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) December 21, 2020
The tweet cited a page of the omnibus government spending bill — the bill paired with the coronavirus relief package, not the relief package itself — listing a $500,000,000 expenditure, directed to Israel, for the Iron Dome project as well as other joint United States-Israel defense and foreign aid initiatives.
According to Milano, who pulled the bill segment from a tweet by far-left journalist Walker Bragman, Congress pulled food from the mouths of needy Americans in order to fund projects designed to protect Israel — one of many unnecessary expenses in the $900 billion bill, negotiated by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on the part of Congressional Democrats.
Her explanation, however, ignores that the listed defense expenditures are actually part of the omnibus spending suite, a $1.4 trillion package that funds the full Federal government for 2021. That package includes all of the year’s defense spending, of which foreign aid is one part.
Journalist Yair Rosenberg clarified.
“NARRATOR: The Covid relief bill did not, in fact, contain $500 million for Israel. Congress passed a suite of bills, including Covid relief *and* the bill funding the Defense Department for 2021, which includes foreign aid. This isn’t hard unless you know nothing about Congress,” Rosenberg tweeted.
NARRATOR: The Covid relief bill did not, in fact, contain $500 million for Israel. Congress passed a suite of bills, including Covid relief *and* the bill funding the Defense Department for 2021, which includes foreign aid. This isn't hard unless you know nothing about Congress. https://t.co/Y558nnKcf2
— Yair Rosenberg (@Yair_Rosenberg) December 21, 2020
‘The bill contains money for everyone from Egypt to Pakistan, as it does every year. Worth noting that under the current agreement struck by Obama, most military aid to Israel (and soon all of it) must be spent in America, so it’s ultimately just a subsidy to our own industries,” he continued.
“What they told you: Congress gave $500 million in its covid relief bill to Israel instead of Americans,” Rosenberg concluded. ‘What actually happened: Congress passed its foreign aid budget for all countries, including military aid to Israel, nearly all of which must be spent on American companies.”
Rosenberg later pointed out that it’s likely those pushing the “$500 million” meme had objectives other than saving Americans money. The meme itself appears to be designed as an anti-Semitic attack on the Jewish state.
“Now ask yourself: Why would people so egregiously misrepresent what happened here, and who does such misinformation demonize? You have now learned a valuable lesson about consuming viral tweets about the Jewish state,” Rosenberg noted.
Milano limited responses to her tweet to those she accounts she follows — an action that served to curb any criticism but also unintentionally revealed that Milano follows quite a few accounts with anti-Semitic leanings.
“Half a billion dollars from one crook (Trump) to another (Bibi)-it’s OUR money. 2 billion for missiles?? 600 dollars for hungry, jobless, homeless Americans. Something is so so wrong, and it begins with McConnell,” one responded.
“We need to stop supporting apartheid states,” replied another.
A few accounts Milano follows did point out that Milano’s tweet could be considered anti-Semitic, but they were quickly shut down by others.
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