Israeli television star Orna Pitussi compared Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla to Adolf Hitler Tuesday in video posted on the actress' Facebook profile, later apologizing for her remarks following public criticism, as reported by MAKO news.
The actress, known for her role in the Hebrew-language series "Reverse", asked rhetorically in the video "How [are] Jews the ones who ended up trying to kill Jewish children," in connection to Israel's rollout of Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine.
Following a public outcry over her comments, Pitussi explained her rationale for the comparison, saying she had "a very stormy day. Contrary to what people think, the last thing I wanted was this kind of publicity, I'm not a bored actress. The post I posted with the cartoon was not from boredom or a desire to make headlines, and certainly not hurt [anyone]. I also belong to a family who survived the Holocaust."
Noting her comparison of Bourla to Adolf Hitler, Pitussi said "what motivated me to upload this cartoon where you see the CEO of Pfizer standing with his hand raised and shouting 'Heil Pfizer' was the thought that children should not be part of an experiment."
"Even if the best minds have worked on a vaccine, medical professionals and other scientists claim it is dangerous. It has not been tested yet, there is no longer enough time to check what side effects there will be, so they prefer not to vaccinate children... I do not say 'I prefer not to vaccinate children' but I shout it. From the blood of my heart. I'm shouting my truth," she added in the statement.
Pitussi also defended her right to express her opinion on the coronavirus vaccine, noting that mentioning the Holocaust was not the best idea, given the sensitivity surrounding the topic, particularly in Israel. Similarly, Pitussi said that she is far from an expert on the topic.
The actress has in the past been vocal in her opposition to vaccines, according to MAKO. The previous day, Pitussi expressed her support for Dr. Avshalom Carmel, who publicly expressed his opposition to administering the coronavirus vaccine to children, later leading to the revocation of his medical license.