A Belgian state broadcaster has apologized and yanked its ‘Schindler’s List’ parody following complaints
Belgian broadcaster VRT has apologized for using a Holocaust movie to ridicule Belgians complaining about food shortages – reportedly caused by the conflict in Ukraine – after Jewish groups complained. The Flemish-language public TV network had used a concentration camp scene from ‘Schindler’s List’ to satirize media reports about a popular cookie being out of stock.
“Humor and satire should be allowed in our programming but it must never be the intention to hurt the feelings of others or laugh at their suffering,”VRT made the statement Monday night. “We recognize that this did happen here, we wish to express our heartfelt apologies.”
The Vlaamse Radio- en Televisieomroeporganisatie also said it would remove the video from its YouTube channel. The segment reportedly aired on April 7 as part of an evening show called ‘The Ideal World.’ It shows a scene from Steven Spielberg’s 1993 Holocaust drama, in which a Jewish concentration camp prisoner was dubbed to complain how someone being taken to the gas chambers took “the last family pack of Cent Wafers.”
Cent Wafers are traditional Belgian cookies stuffed with chocolate cream. Some of the Belgian media has attributed the shortage to the conflict in Ukraine, a major wheat exporter to the EU – along with Russia, which Brussels has embargoed. VRT attempted to ridicule those reports but met resistance from Jewish lawmakers and activists.
Video of the Consultative Body of Christians and Jews of Belgium, also known as the video “disrespectful and tasteless”VRT was urged to make use of its public funds “promote higher values,”The Jerusalem Post. The sketch was also opposed by Michael Freilich (federal parliament member and Orthodox Jew).
‘Schindler’s List’ is a 1993 drama directed by Steven Spielberg about a German industrialist who saved over 1,000 Polish Jews from the Holocaust. It was nominated for seven Oscars.
Last month, an Israeli comedy show, ‘Eretz Nehederet’ (‘It’s a Wonderful Country’), also referenced the film in a sketch satirizing Israeli tech executives against the backdrop of the conflict in Ukraine.
A pair of leggings featuring artwork from the movie were found at a California thrift store this week. They quickly became viral via Twitter. This questionable legwear was found at a virtual US store, which also offers clothing and accessories with art inspired by the movie.
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